Here is a quick guide with some of my favourite globe-trotting-tastebud picks at the three Briton Food markets.
for when this passes
Brixton Food markets
Market Row and Brixton Village were both originally market arcades and since the late noughties (2007-) their restaurant offerings have gone from strength to strength. Although this also means the original vibe has faded – you see less and less of the butchers, random stores that sell 1001 things and Caribbean supermarkets, but that’s for another blog … back to those favourites.
What to eat at Brixton Market Row
This is the birthplace of Franco Manca. Yep, the place with the pizza with a sourdough crust – simple, thin, crispy, and delicious. I’m a fan as they do a definitely-worth-trying ‘white sauce’ pizza, as in no tomatoes. They don’t take reservations, so your best bet is to get there as soon as it opens, and pray (or enjoy a good queue).
Craving something deliciously warm and hearty? Then MamaLan and their incredible Mama Chicken Noodle Soup will be right up your alley. And while you’re there, order some dumplings, bao buns and a bubble tea cocktail to wash it all down with. You won’t regret it.
If you haven’t already been won over by its vegan cakes, Ms. Cupcake is where you should be. Although I’m not a vegan, I often stop by for a cupcake or cookie as they are light, not too overly sweet and perfect with a tea. If you think cupcakes are so 2013 then go for the cookie sandwich – Salted Caramel Pecan is the best tip for a cookie sandwich virgin.
Where to eat at Brixton Village Market
Honest Burger is one of the original Brixton Market burger places, which has gone on a dramatic expansion across the city and is kind of losing its touch, but don’t write it off, it’s still worth trying one of their well seasoned and prepared burgers and the delicious rosemary salt chips (for that Sunday Roast potatoes vibe).
It took me a long time to get hold of a table at KaoSarn as it’s usually packed – I imagine it’s because of their reasonable prices and BYOD, and it was worth the wait. It’s hard to recommend just one item from this Thai place, but you can’t go wrong with the Gai Tod: deep fried garlic and pepper chicken, served with sticky rice and a hot dip. Perfect for setting your mouth on fire on a cold winter night.
In the 7 1/2 years that I have been wandering around SW9, the Mexican place has changed it’s name more often than P Diddy – remember him? It is currently known as Jalisco, the food is very moreish and comes without the pretensions you often see at some more central Mexican places. Oh, and the mole is so good, you can just grab a spoon and down a bowl without it even touching a tortilla chip!
What to eat at Brixton Pop Market
Put a few sea-containers together like Tetris, gather some hip street food vendors together, get the marketing ball rolling and you get Pop Brixton, a relatively new entrant to the area. It has its charm as everyone can grab whatever they want and still sit together. I recommend it for a lunch as it’s super packed out in the evenings.
If you’re looking for something different, why not head to Original Patacon for Colombian plantain wraps, wings and burgers. Their house special is a 12-hour cooked beer braised beef brisket with green plantain, smoked cheese and pineapple sauce! Think you can handle it?
Halo Burger does a 90s-inspired fast food chain type of burger, with the added bonus of being completely vegan friendly. And I have to say this is the best plant-based burger I’ve had the pleasure of chowing down on, no question. Even if meat is more your kinda thing, this place is bound to win you and your tastebuds over in an instant.
One of the ultimate things on my wanderlist is a WOOFF experience on a vineyard in New Zealand. Until then I have the Specialist Cellars to turn to and enjoy the end product, without t
Updated March 2021