London On A Plate: From Deep-Fried Doughnuts To Sexy Salads
1/6 Ottolenghi Islington: Where The Salads Are Sexy
Helmed by celebrity chef and cookbook author Yotam Ottolenghi, Ottolenghi Islington specialises in two antithetical food groups that somehow go hand in hand: salads and sweets. Personified, the deli and café would be the poster boy for a balanced lifestyle.
Curious about the electrical flex hanging from the ceiling? A convenient power source for the communal table, it powers the personal toaster that comes with the breakfast toast platter. That way, you can brown your bread just the way you like it.
2/6 Borough Market: For A Slice Of History
Get off at London Bridge on the Northern or Jubilee lines of the London Underground, and gambol through this historical site. Peddling fresh food and artisanal goods since 1250, Borough Market is not only a great place to pick up souveniers (hand-painted tea towels were added to our trove) but also an iconic lunchtime destination.
Things eaten during our visit (in chronological order) include cold jellied eels with a splash of vinegar and white pepper; fresh sea urchin from the shell; rhubarb and cream goats milk ice cream; barley mushroom risotto; and Turkish pistachio coffee. Plan your route using this market map or simply wing it.
3/6 Leon: For Guilt-Free Fast Food
Must fast food equate to junk food? Not on Leon's watch!
The London-born restaurant chain upends all preconceived notions about greasy QSRs (quick service restaurants) by serving "naturally fast food" (also their tagline). Think poached egg pots for breakfast; Brazilian black bean bowls for lunch; chicken and chorizo clubs for dinner; and GFC (gluten-free chicken nuggets) for an in-between snack. Who else would like to see this concept come to Malaysia?
Leon | Various locations | +44 20 7089 7070
4/6 Cutter & Squidge: For Biskies, Buttercream Cakes & More
Home of the original biskie*, Cutter & Squidge is loud and proud about 1) being a 100 percent all-natural bakery and 2) supporting the locavore movement by using only British ingredients.
*But what's a biskie, you say? A distant cousin of the American whoopie pie, the sweet treat is any kind of filling betwixt two biscuits. Good luck choosing from Very Berry Cheesecake; Pistachio Crunch; Strawberries & Cream; Classic S'mores and more... what a chore!
Other delectable products behind the display counter include cake truffles the size of ping-pong balls, macarons in more colours than your eyeshadow palette, and tierred cakes with toppings that could double as fascinators.
Cutter & Squidge | 20 Brewer St, Soho, London | +44 20 8453 0212 | firstname.lastname@example.org
5/6 Crosstown Doughnuts: For Deep-Fried Deliciousness (With Vegan Options)
‘Doughnut’ be abashed about returning to Crosstown Doughnuts for the second time within a half hour. After all, we did. “There was no way you were going to stop at just two doughnut holes," laughed the dimpled server behind the counter. We know better now!
It's a good thing that vegan treats are all-inclusive, or else we'd be green with envy. Dyed with spirulina and dusted with vanilla crumbles, the tangy and creamy Lime & Coconut doughnut makes one forget eggs or dairy ever existed.
Crosstown Doughnuts | 9 physical stores throughout London at time of print, plus many other stockists | +44 20 7734 8873 | email@example.com
6/6 Noble Rot: A Pilgrimage For Wine Afficionados
Named for a fungus that's essential to winemaking, Noble Rot takes its fermented grape juice seriously while eschewing elitism and airs. Offering wines by the half-glass, the handsome restaurant and wine bar is where we sipped our way through as many vintages as possible, including a floral Château Mourgues du Grès Galets Rosès 2017 from South Rhone, France — literally a wet dream!
Where food is concerned, expect an elegant mix of familiar fare (gorgeous oysters, always local) and some more adventurous items (smoked eel served atop black Irish soda bread, anyone?). We're still dreaming of the slipsole with smoked butter, which came clean off the bone in neat fillets.
Noble Rot Restaurant & Wine Bar | 51 Lambs Conduit Street, London | +44 20 7242 8963 | firstname.lastname@example.org