On London's South Bank, Borough Market is the city's oldest food market and is home to 100+ stalls that sell all sorts of delicious food from small batch producers, craft suppliers and artisans across the UK and beyond. The site dates back to the 13th century and the market still draws huge crowds today. Taste your way around by nibbling on samples and stock up on bread, meats, wine and more to create your very own gourmet picnic. Here are our 8 must-visit stalls and shops to whet your appetite.
British Charcuterie From Cannon & Cannon
It may be more of a continental tradition but British charcuterie is a growing trend and Cannon and Cannon is at the forefront of the scene. The stall sells a tasty selection of cured meats and air-dried sausages from artisan producers across the UK. Tuck into samples of salami, chorizo, jerky and sliced meats and buy snacks to go. Enjoy meat and wine pairings or learn how to cure meat and even make your own bacon at the company's Meat School just down the road.
You'll likely smell Kappacasein Dairy before you see it. The pungent cheesy aroma that wafts from this stall is one of Borough's signature scents and lures foodies from afar. The star of the show is the Swiss-style raclette, a hearty dish of baby potatoes, gherkins and pickled onions slathered with potent cheese roasted under hot irons. The Ogleshield cheese is made in neighboring Bermondsey using rich, unpasteurised full-fat milk from Jersey cows. You can also pick up a grilled cheese sandwich made with Montgomery cheddar, onions, leeks and garlic served on sourdough.
Get a caffeine fix at Monmouth Coffee, a major player on London's coffee scene. The first store opened in Covent Garden in 1978 and this Borough Market outpost was one of the first wave of specialist retailers to set up shop on the South Bank in the late 1990s. The fine roasted filter coffees are all ethically sourced from single farms, estates and cooperatives and there's always a tasty selection of cakes and pastries on offer. Arrive early to avoid the crowds that typically queue round the block for a signature strong brew. Monmouth's HQ and roastery on nearby Maltby Street can be visited by appointment only.
Carb load at the Flour Station, an award-winning craft bakery that sells delicious sourdough loaves, speciality breads and tasty pastries. All of the products are handmade and have been created using traditional techniques and a long fermentation process that sees doughs develop for up to 24 hours. The bakery started life in the kitchen of Jamie Oliver's Fifteen restaurant in 2002. Grab a Borough Seeded loaf and tear off fluffy chunks throughout the day.
This Borough Market stalwart has been selling quality meat for 20+ years and the award-winning butcher supplies some of London's best restaurants. The shop has a prime position in the market and sells all sorts of meat from the company's three Yorkshire farms and a range of hot sausage rolls, pies, Scotch eggs, pates and preserves for a meaty picnic.
Pick up a sweet treat from 3Bis, an authentic Italian gelateria sandwiched between Monmouth Coffee and Neal's Yard Dairy. The artisanal small batch gelato is made fresh every day and although many of the ingredients are sourced directly from Italy including pistachios from Sicily, hazelnuts from Piemonte and licorice from Calabria, it's British cow's milk that creates the perfect creamy texture. Classic flavors include chocolate chip and lemon sorbet and you'll see British influences too like Eton Mess. For the ultimate sugar rush, order a gelato-stufed brioche or crepe.
In a converted warehouse with a grand Victorian facade, Neal's Yard Dairy is a stunning cheese emporium that sells British and Irish cheeses. Pop in for samples of potent stilton, creamy goat cheese and tangy cheddar and buy slices straight from giant cheese wheels. The staff really know their stuff and can recommend the perfect cheese for any occasion. Many of the cheeses are aged and ripened in the dairy's own maturing rooms that occupy railway arches in nearby Bermondsey.
English Wine From The Wine Pantry
Say cheers to England's major winemaking regions at the Wine Pantry, London's first tasting room dedicated to English wines. Sip your way through up to 20 wines including sparkling varieties and pair them with a selection of British cured meats and cheeses. You can buy tasting vouchers at the door on Fridays and Saturdays and there are special events to look out for Monday to Thursday.