Tuesday 27 October 2009

Top 10 Snack Attacks, London

Despite my focus on restaurants, I love a good, dirty pig out on the run. Here are my top 10 snack attacks, scattered around London, for when you're eating on the hoof...

1. The Breadman: Gorgeous Berwick Street market stall run by two affable chaps, Chris and Tom, from Mondays-Fridays. Best Portuguese tarts in London. Don't even think about stopping at one. Beigels hot out of the oven from Brick Lane - get them plain, with hot salt beef and mustard, chorizo and other delicious fillings. The doughnuts bursting with raspberry jam or custard are also delicious. Great prices. Berwick Street market, Soho

2. I Camisa & Son: My favourite shop in London. Step in the doors of this tiny Italian grocer and see, hear, smell and taste Italy. Stock up on fresh pastas, home made pestos and sauces, cheeses, truffles (the white Alba truffle is in stock now), hams, salami, jars of tuna, sweet peppers, olives, anchovies, wine, panattonis hanging from the ceiling and fabulous olive oils and balsamic vinegars. The staff are real Italian nonnas, the prices are great and everything's all the better if you can barter in Italian. Prego. Take away rolls and focaccias can be made up with all their fresh ingredients, starting from about £1. Yes, £1.  61 Old Compton Street, Soho W1D

3. Brick Lane Beigel: Needs no introduction. Join the queues to wolf down a giant, salt beef, pickle and mustard beigel made by the masters. 159 Brick Lane, E1 6SB

4. Nordic Bakery: The cinnamon bun is a knock out. They also do a rich hot chocolate to help wash it down. 14a Golden Square, London, W1F 9JG

5. St John: Order a box of fresh madeleines, lull over a wine while you wait, then take them home freshly baked, and don't let anyone else in the house. Scoff them all. Heavenly. 26 St John Street, Smithfield, EC1M 4AY.

6. Princi: This is not the first time I have sung the praises of the marvellous cannoncini and chocolate chip biscuits - see here. 135 Wardour Street, Soho, W1F 0UT

7. Leila's: Warm up over winter with a rich coffee, and a hearty slab of ginger cake or The Peanut Gallery's beloved Portuguese rice flour brioche thingie. 17 Calvert Avenue, Shoreditch, E2 7JP  Leila's Shop on Urbanspoon

8. The M&S Scone: Cakey, sweet, crumbly mounds of joy.

9. Flat White & Milk Bar: Love the haloumi and bacon bagel with brown sauce. Everything tastes better with haloumi. Amazing coffee too. Flat White: 17 Berwick Street, Soho, W1D; Milk Bar: 3 Bateman Street, Soho, W1D

10. Scoop: Divine Italian gelato, made with ingredients sourced from Italy and the UK. I love a sizeable scoop of the Nocciolo made with hazlenuts from Piedmont, their spiritual home. The coffee, dark chocolate and caramel varieties are also sensational. Even worth a bit of frost bite in winter. 40 Shorts Gardens, Covent Garden, WC2H 9AB 
Scoop Fine Italian Gelato on Urbanspoon

Finally, Borough Market: Ok, so this makes 11. But would I really miss out this glorious mecca of cheeses, meats, veg, bread, olive oils etc, with Neal's Yard Dairy just up the road? Loiter around the cheese stalls and steal as many samples as you can before they start recognising you, load up on a monstrously big roast pork roll with stuffing and apple sauce, scoff samples of chocolate brownies and banana cake, try creamy balsamic vinegars, wrap up a fabulous, giant almond croissant and with your spare hand, or borrow somebody else's, indulge in a lovely Monmouth coffee. Mmmm...  Borough Market, 8 Southwark Street, London, SE1 1TL.

Feed me: Let me know what I have missed!


  1. BrightonSuz28 October, 2009

    There's a Nordic bakery in Golden Square? Who knew?! Well, not me anyway. Next time my Swedish father is in town, I'll stock up on cinnamon buns and watch him weep a small tear. Thanks!

  2. I used to work near Berwick St but never knew about The Breadman - would've made a great lunch option. Agree about those Princi cannoncinis - delicious! And Nordic Bakery do some amazing cinnamon doughnuts but only on Wednesdays...mmm

  3. Hi BrightonSuz - That's brilliant. I almost welled up myself when I first discovered them. Hope your dad enjoys!

    Hi Gourmet Traveller - ooh, the doughnuts sound good. I'll give them a go. Love your blog.

  4. Thanks! Talk of those cannoncinis made me crave them so I dropped by to Princi on the way to dinner and bought some (as well as some profiteroles and spinach & feta pastries)...looking forward to having them with a cuppa later

  5. Hilarious! I love that you were on your way to dinner but still felt the need to stock up to get you through the night. GD


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