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23 November, 2010

London in October 2010, Part 2: Borough Market, the London Bridge, and Camden Town

Comments : 2 Posted in : Dining in London - UK, Travel, Travel Guide for London, UK on by : The Gourmez

The Borough Market, from one of many entrances

For our third day in London, we had a theme: FOOD. I didn’t actually do much tasting of food, but I did smelling and looking galore. London has many markets, and one of the best is the Borough Market, located in Southwark on the south side of the Thames. It’s a blend of produce, meat, and cheese sellers and purveyors of a variety of ready-to-eat munchies. We rendezvoused with Scott, Zahir, and Sanaz after a little while and continued the market tour. Let the food show begin!

Walking into the open-air section. I always think tunnels add drama.

Bizarre-looking mushrooms

Oysters

Turkish Deligts

Pretty Meringues

Olive Oil Tasting—so much better in Europe, let me tell you.

Meat pies in a multitude of varieties

That last picture is of the Southwark Cathedral, which is right next to the sprawling grounds of the Borough Market. I thought it quite lovely, especially in a photo coming up in a bit. This next picture is also not of food, but of an impressive apartment complex with golden lines.

I told you in the last blog that this trip showed me just how much I love gold. A lot! Now back into the market:

These two cheeses scared me.

People reclining with their purchased goodies. I’m amazed they found a spot, actually. The market was absolutely swamped. I basically had to use my crowd technique of parting the people waters the whole time we moved through the stalls.

Jamon?

Scott and Zahir had these chorizo sandwiches that looked scrumptious.

I thought this photo was quite appropriate. You might not be able to see, but the cow has EAT ME painted on its side.

Want some curry? They might have enough for you.

How about some hens?

Steaming rice and red sauce?

Yep, I basically wanted it all, and thus, refrained entirely. I regret that now, especially not partaking of this one vendor’s slabs of bread that were absolutely covered in dripping cheese and served up with pickles. I don’t know what they were, nor did I get a picture, but if you have any ideas, let me know. Pretty sure he had the longest line by far. Even food, one can only peruse for so long, so Ben and I wandered off toward the nearby London Bridge for more sightseeing. And we bumped right into Zahir, who had the same idea. This was our first view of the Gherkin, perhaps London’s most famous skyscraper.

Not the Gherkin, but also a pretty building, right on the edge of the bridge.

And now, here are the views from the London Bridge.

And here’s Ben’s 360 degree view from the bridge. Make sure you right-click to view the whole image.

Here are the Tower Bridge and the HMS Belfast. You’re going to see a lot more of that bridge in the next blog on the Tower of London. I get a bit carried away with it.

This is walking back toward the Borough Market. Hello, Southwark!

Ben at the City of London Dragon post

And here’s the picture of the Southwark Cathedral from the front. I loved that modern interpretation of a suit of armor.

Finally, we had had enough of the Borough Market—those crowds are ridiculous. So where did we head? Where the sidewalks were nearly as packed as the Market, of course! We took the Underground to Camden Town, where Scott lives. This portion of the day is titled SHOPPING, though there was still some FOOD to be ogled. So basically, Camden Town is hipster/goth/punk central with lots of overpriced stores full of fashion for the stylish, and ultra-cool, young adult.


We walked along the avenue down to the Camden Lock Market, which is another area that looks deceptively small when you enter but never ends!

The Loch that I assume Camden Lock Market gets its name from.

Deceptively small market stalls. Oh, but it was only the beginning.

When this is one of the market’s decorations, you know you have more than a few stalls on your hands.

Heading into what I call the Golden Ceiling section of the market. Yep, more gold!

The Horse Tunnel Market entrance, which is apparently part of the larger Stable Market complex, which I think the Camden Lock Market was merely attached too. So confusing, but gosh darn pretty for shopping plazas.

Giant chandeliers? Yes, please.

More horses earning the market its name.

Cyberdog, a crazy hipster robot store. Yes, you read that right.

Market food stalls

Inside Cyberdog. Yes, those are dancers in the cages.

Androids coming from the walls.

More gold! What’s a market in London without gold?

And the Stable Bar. We stumbled into this establishment, and it looks totally fun for a group to hang at for the evening. It’s divided into separate corrals that you can rent, all decorated differently. There was a music show going on in the middle of the space. Wave hi to Scott.

From there, we headed to Scott’s flat, then off in pursuit of the evenings’ pints and food.

Pretty row of houses with Scott, Zahir, and Sanaz walking in front.

A minigolf course in a residential area.

After ciders at the very popular, neighborly Southampton Arms, we headed to Scott’s favorite local pub, the Lord Stanley, and had dinner. Photos weren’t great and neither is my memory of the dishes, but all the food was delicious except for the rabbit pie. Of course, we met yet another of Scott’s friends here. The man has friends everywhere.

Toasted bread with caper berries and some sort of fresh jam, I think.

Croquettes.

Inside the Lord Stanley

The Rabbit Pie. The problem was that it was too thin. The accompanying greens were delicious, though.

And dessert, which was pretty good, but I don’t recall what was involved. Figs? Chestnuts? Who knows.

We then parted ways for the evening, and Ben and I headed back to the hotel, passing this odd site along the way.

What on Earth is this ad selling?

 

Coming up on London Part 3, probably next week, is the Tower of London, which was my absolutely favorite part of the trip, if only because it applies to my fantasy sensibilities so well. In the meantime, feel free to see more photos at our photo website.

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