Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Old Spitalfields Market

Craig of That Dapper Chap visits London's Old Spitalfields Market and takes lunch at Blixen

Just a few of the great stores that you'll find at Old Spitalfields Market

There's been a market on the site of the Old Spitalfields market for nearly 400 years, needless to say much has changed since then and while you're able to buy chicken in various different foods from a wealth of street food vendors, you'll no longer see live trading as there once was when the market first set up in 1638! Once on London's outskirts, the market is now very central and is just a few minutes walk from Liverpool Street station.

Shopping in Hackett where they hold rum tasting and backgammon evenings
Just one of the many stalls that you'll find at this historic market


This market is very different to others in London, yes, there is that traditional element with the traders and their stalls selling everything from dresses, flat caps, paper craft, cheeses and jewellery and everything else in between, but also in this covered Victorian hall there's a funky modern vibe which sits very comfortably alongside high end stores such as Belstaff, Chanel and Cheaney.

Stall offering everything from Clothing and watches to jewellery and paper craft and cheese

Does sir fancy a new bowler hat or a top hat perhaps?

Maybe a dandy new waistcoat to go with your new hat?

Open seven days a week, the market is not only a destination for tourists but is also a go to place for the locals. With community events such as the free yoga classes offered by Lululemon at the Commercial Street store on Tuesday mornings, fashion shows, night markets and the art on display in the basement of Hackett, the stores here and the market offer something different to the mainstream.

Beautiful artisan cheeses available n the cheese shop. Pop in and try a few samples.

Olive and sweet treats in abundance 

While wandering around the market either looking for something new to wear on a Friday night on the town, or some artisan bread, you are assaulted with the sights and sounds of the place. The smells that radiate from the food area are very difficult to resist and every taste is catered for. With healthy options for the fit and cautious there's something for the spice lover too, with many street vendors such as Bleeker Street Burger and Poppies fish and chips for the traditional foodies. Pilpel will cover all your falafal needs while Indigo offers traditional street food of India, alternatively grab a wood fired pizza from Sud Italia. Just grab a paper plate and take a few minutes to sit and eat while listening to the pianist playing some traditional tunes.

Bleecker Burger: The best burger in London, according to Time Out

Grab a wood fired pizza from the guys at Sud Italia

Falafel for days at Pilpel
The Turkish Wrap House stand at Old Spitalfields Market
 

If you fancy something a little more refined you can find a good variety of chain restaurants on site one of which comes with Michelin stars! On my visit we chose to eat at Blixen on Brushfield Street. Open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and cocktails they offer a wide menu of very tempting dishes

Blixen in Brushfield Street was a welcome pit stop

The beautiful conservatory interior at Blixen

Getting stuck in to my smoked haddock and perfectly cooked poached egg

I chose the smoked haddock with poached egg, spinach, crushed potatoes and hollandaise. It arrived quickly (considering how busy it was) and was perfectly cooked. You can often judge a restaurant by how well they can do a poached egg. This one was perfect. 

A closer look at the smoked haddock and poached egg with crushed potatoes and hollandaise sauce

Rustic charm at Blixen in Brushfield Street

My guest chose the burnt fennel, freekeh, pea and wild oregano salad with seared tuna. I have to say that when it arrived I did suffer from a bout of food envy as the tuna looked incredible. Both dishes were immaculately presented and my plate was left clean.

The seared tuna that gave me immediate food envy

Blixen has a great atmosphere and is reasonably priced with both dishes under £15. We had more shopping to do (which I'll cover in future posts) so we had to decline desert, however I was incredibly tempted by the brownie with vanilla ice cream, chocolate crisps and spiked espresso! Maybe next time!

Blixen offer private dining. Book online.

FIND OLD SPITALFIELDS MARKET


  

FIND BLIXEN


     
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