The Stepkids were just in the UK for a whirlwind week of press and performances, and an odd cellar stairwell acoustic session. There wasn’t much time for food adventures, and even less for stalling said adventures with dedicated photographing, but here are some of the highlights.
London may have a bad reputation when it comes to eats, but it sure fooled us. Take lunch at the Urban Psychic Garden, for example, a quirky medicinal garden installation by the collective Wayward Plants, complete with a stellar lunchtime cafe serving up artsy Brooklyn-esq grub by Rambling Restaurant, like this chorizo & lentil salad with paprika, parsley, spicy potatoes and – and here is where the UK veers away from BK – red currants. (*Note the compostable and composted container and utensils. Win.)
Or, the bangers & mash at The Globe pub. A proper British lunch, though the mashed potatoes were a bit on the starchy side.
Unfortunately, no photos of The Canton Arms in Stockwell, where we had an exquisite meal: fried baby artichokes stuffed with garlic and herbs, a superb duck breast on a salad of greens and spring peas, and, would you guess it, duck rillette once again, served with slices of cured duck. (Not quite as good as Paris, but still worthy of a mention). We were sent there by a friend who works in the Michelin-starred world, as a less expensive but equally good alternative to St. John Bread and Wine, and we were not disappointed.
But really, the best adventure of all was the Sunday morning (er, afternoon) spent at Borough Market – what Smorgasburg wants to (and might eventually one day) be. We must have sampled all the world’s delicacies in the span of two hours! The market is an unending melange of deliciousness, a feast for the eyes and taste buds (and no shortage of samples), with crispy fried cod, blood red venison sausage, aged cheeses made from unpasteurized milks, honeycomb chocolate, turkish delights in light green and rose, rows of tiny jars filled with spicy mustard, mint jelly, and lemon custard, savory pies, baklava, smooth and slightly pink slices of foie gras, colorful spices, pungent truffles, shallow pans of curry two feet across, sliced watermelon, tangy goat milk ice cream and even raw milk for £1 a cup (whose drinking caused us to further curse the sorry state of food in the United States). And, beef curtains (the UK’s version of jerky?).
As they say in London, it was brilliant!