This was technically our second Saturday in London; last week we were dazed and sleepy and only halfway aware what day of the week it was, so we didn't really do anything super-exciting. This morning we took our first trip to Borough Market, the famed London food market open only on Friday afternoon and Saturday. We had wandered through it on our last visit when it was closed, but we had little idea what to expect once the vendors had set up.
In the San Francisco Bay Area there are farmers markets that are very nice, and there are some wonderful groceries like Berkeley Bowl, but there is nothing in the Bay Area remotely like Borough Market. We had heard from some other food-loving friends that Borough Market was definitely worth going to, and some books liken it to a food Mecca with a cult-like following of foodies. They did not exaggerate. We were totally stunned at the scope, quality, array of diverse foodstuffs, and event-like atmosphere of the market. This is clearly the place to be on a Saturday morning.
True to British form, along with very good produce, the market was heavily meat and cheese oriented (hooray!), and had wonderful bakers, tea and coffee merchants, juice bars, and prepared food stalls. The bakers seemed to be in a competition to see who could make the largest and most chocolatey brownie. I encourage this competition.
Perhaps the most famous of the food stalls is the Brindisa chorizo sandwich stand. From this picture you can tell just how happy I was to try one of these sandwiches. No mugging for the camera here, this is pure sausage-fueled joy. They only serve one thing at the Brindisa stand: charcoal grilled chorizo with rocket salad (arugula), piquillo peppers, and olive oil on a grilled ciabatta-like roll. It was perfection. We followed the chorizo sandwich with a creme caramel made by a local dairy that was as good as I've ever had. Other than a chunk of incredible soft cheese we bought almost nothing because we were so overwhelmed with choices.
Anyhow, it was a wonderful start to the day, and Borough Market is highly recommended to all food lovers out there. On the way back we walked over the beautiful Tower Bridge and through St. Katherine's Harbor, enjoying the lovely weather that is still sticking with us.