We packed a lot of eating and walking into our taste of London in 44 hours. Highlights were the Borough Market, Portobello Road and the Tate Modern.
London called, and we answered. Our visit was short and left us wanting more. We got a sampling of the burgeoning food scene, and we got a taste of London in just 44 hours.
London does not have a long history of culinary excellence. The late comedian Bill Hicks referred to London as the land of fairies and elves and as a place where you can eat boiled pizza. Our goal was to find out if things had changed.
Taste of London Day One – Notting Hill, Meat Pies, Piccadilly Circus, Big Ben and Indian Food
On day one, we strolled down Portobello Road in Notting Hill where we ate Ginger Pig meat pies at the cocktail bar Portobello Star. Not surprisingly, the pies went went down quite easily with some beer and cider.
We walked a lot, as we always do, and saw Piccadilly Circus and Big Ben.
We ended the day by meeting friends Russell and Mandy for some vegetarian curry before we crashed due to jet lag.
Taste of London Day Two – Borough Market, Neal’s Yard Dairy, the Tate Modern and Pubs
Day two started late due to jet lag but was full nonetheless. We spent three hours grazing our way through the Borough Market, a world-class emporium right at the London Bridge tube station. This market is over 1,000 years old but has come into its own during the past ten years. Cheeses, meats, vegetables and all kind of treats now abound in a wonderfully overwhelming way.
We also visited Neal’s Yard Dairy right near the Borough Market to check out some of the finest cheese produced in Great Britain and the world. We were pleasantly surprised to bump into DiBruno’s cheesemonger, Matt Shankle. Since DiBruno’s is just blocks from our house in Philadelphia, it truly is a small world.
A short, drizzly walk over the Millennium Bridge took us to Fleet Street’s Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, a pub that was rebuilt in 1666 and was frequented by Charles Dickens, for a couple of pre-dinner pints of Samuel Smith beers from the tap.
We met up with friends and awesome hosts Gregg and Sylva at a neighborhood spot called the Mitre, We ended our too-brief visit with fish & chips, braised lamb shoulder and sticky toffee pudding.
Two things we know for sure: London’s food scene is happening, and we will be back soon.
Our taste of London in 44 hours wasn’t enough! We have so much more we want to do both with both food and culture, not to mention the 30 Free London Attractions on the The Trusted Traveller site. What other suggestions do you have for our next trip to London?