One way to understand the idiosyncrasies of a country is to know its eating habits. So on your next trip to London; by all means try to visit the Borough Market, one of the oldest in Europe still in operation. Since the 13th-century the legendary market combines history, tradition and of course, excellent local and international products.
But the Market claims that its history dates back to the 11th century, maybe earlier, when the sellers of grains, fish, vegetables and livestock trading by the London Bridge were moved to Borough High Street. In 1755, Parliament ordered its closure because of the massive traffic congestion that occurred at the bridge entrance, until finally, a group of merchants acquired a plot and reopened the market there.
Borough Market is located in the area of Southwark, between Southwark and Borough High Streets, south of the Southwark Cathedral and right next to the London Bridge underground station. The current buildings are from 1851, and its iconic art deco facade was added in 1932.
A haven for food lovers, Borough Market, offers a large number of food stalls from all over the world and is surrounded by colorful shops, restaurants and pubs where you can try many of its products specially prepared for you.
In this magical, bustling place, chickens, cauliflowers, vanilla beans, Scottish salmon and pig heads share space with stalls selling the best French champagne or the most delicate Russian caviar. That is what makes Borough Market such a unique attraction.
It is best to follow the aromas, flavors and colors. Take your time to browse the different stalls, enjoy a freshly cooked roast beef with mustard sauce, try the richly seasoned Spanish and Greek olives and enjoy the aromas of freshly baked bread.
Not to be missed at the Borough Market are its famous paella and a traditional meat pie that dates from the time when London was part of the Roman Empire. There are also stalls offering artisanal honey, fresh pasta, various Indian curries and spicy dishes, as well as yogurts, nuts and typical English cheeses such as Cheddar or Stilton.
In the wine stores, you will surely find what you are looking for, and will be amazed at the shops selling traditional English beers and ciders. Your visit will be an authentic and unforgettable gastronomical feast. ■