Tasting the best foods of East London
Ah yes, I can really equate to poor Oliver Twist when he sings out on the streets of London starving and dreaming about food, glorious food and those hot sausage and mustard dreams of the young Oliver. While surprisingly, there was no sausage on this food tour of East London’s trendy arcades and foodie haunts, we were able to taste a variety of amazing and delectable yummies while Eating London – a delicious food tour on the East end of London.
I must say, I was slightly disappointed mostly for missing the first venue because I forgot to bring the confirmation sheet showing the exact location where everyone was to meet and unfortunately I only remembered the meeting place as Old Spitafield market which was an abandoned train station that has been converted recently to a super trendy market, specialty food and clothing Galleria filled with fun things to explore including delicious food. What I missed out on was a great start to the tasting extravaganza – literally the best bacon sandwich ever made and sold in East London..(boo hoo) and everyone from the tour was raving about it and said it was quite delicious. I guess I’ll just have to go back another time to visit the shop and have a real taste.
Why take a food tour in London?
With so many choices of food markets, cafes, take outs and restaurants in the city, it really is hard to decide on something special to experience in the food venues around the city. A food tour gives you a sampling of the best regional foods and specialty food venues to try out all in one tour and also get a fun experience exploring around the city. I signed up with Eating London which offers some of the most signature dishes to experience from the best local venues in the area of East End, but they also do tours of other areas of the city to explore and eat at the same time.
Lets start the East London food tour
Fortunately, I was able to join the tour for the next taste which was at a very traditional English restaurant simply called The English restaurant for traditional bread pudding and a soothing café mocha. Yes the moist and creamy bread pudding was simply divine and I had a really big slice to make up for missing the first stop. It was nice meeting up with an international grouping of tourist and our ever so friendly guide.
Would you like a slice?
We continue our walk back to Spitafield’s through the various arcades and über trendy shops and head into the tasty cheese domain of Androuet, London’s famous cheese shop selling locally produced cheese from England along with some specialty cheese from the continent. We sampled a variety of soft, semi-soft to cheddar style cheese and it was a fun tour of tasting the local cheese from the many regions of England.
Tasty cheese at Androuet
After our cheese foray, we took to the streets and visited the older section of East London with its notorious past of derelicts, hookers and infamous characters like the Jack the Ripper. What is left of these old brick structures and warehouses converted into fancy eateries and condos making real estate in this zone, one of the most expensive in all of London. Fortunately many of the old facades are left intact and being preserved while the interiors are used for different purposes.
Trying the best fish and chips in London
It’s all a fascinating tour of this rapidly changing district and once again, I’m starting to get hungry and fortunately we head close-by to what is known as the best fish and chip house in all of London at Poppies. Winning many contests and accolades as the best chippy shop in all of London, I was really excited to get my hands on these hot, fried and yes fluffy fish chips served with thick slices of French fries. The place is pretty cool with its vintage 40’s vibe and décor and the food being served old style in newspaper wrap.
Well I’m getting full from all the fried goodness so it’s a good thing that we are walking around the area again and this time we are visiting some of the cooler parts of East London in an area that has been revitalized called Brick Lane. It’s now a very cool and filled with street art, über shops and galleries and a slew of specialty ethnic cuisine including Indian curry shops. We are now visiting the tasty and spicy (if you like it super hot or not) curries at Aladin, one of noted 10 best curry shops in London. We get to sample three different curries: one vegetarian, one with beef and another with chicken and all done in medium not spicy which for the lot of us was already pretty hot. I skip the rice addition and just go for the different curries but take it easy since, we are just half way through our eating extravaganza.
Now I’m getting very close to exploding and fortunately we get to walk around Brick Lane to check out some of the very popular street artists and galleries in the area. Surprisingly, it doesn’t take long to see many food venues along the way and we drop by our next venue which makes some of the best bagels in the entire city. Sammy’s Bagels is an institution and makes their bagels the old fashion way and strict Jewish standards. We get to sample the bagels and their main specialty, pastrami on bagels, and oh my god it is so good and I’m so full now but still stuffing my face – it’s crazy and so am I on this foodie binge.
Fresh bagels and boiled beef, delicious!
Me, pouring some tasty ales
One more short walk through the area and checking out more shops and arcades in the area and we are finally treated to an old fashion local pub in the area called The Pride of Spitafields. This pub is as English as it gets with the cool wooden bar and beer taps, black and white images, weird floral carpets and slightly musty smelling pub smell. We get to sample the local ales and some of the home-made ciders from the pub and it is surprising how few in our group want to go for seconds with all the samples, but I take a few more samples of the hard cider because it is cold and a nice palate cleanser.
Hard to believe that we are not close to being done, but we head on out through the streets into another close district called the Shoreditch district which was also a working class neighborhood and now filled with tiny million dollar condos and trendy shops and eateries. One of those we visit is a fun pizza joint called Pizza East which is in a converted warehouse turned into an uber modern pizzeria. Fortunately we are not here to carb load but to have our last taste which is my absolute favorite, a salted caramel tart. So sensual, rich and salty, it really caps off the tour with the most seductive end and I’m completely satiated and way past the bursting point.
Well nothing left to do but to thank our guide and fellow foodie adventurers and head on our own for a nice nap or easy stroll through the Shoreditch neighborhood. I totally enjoyed the Eating London food tour, you really get your moneys worth and more. Word of advice, reserve this tour early since it books fast, you can check out their website here for availability. I hope you enjoyed this food tour, Eating London – a delicious food tour for Travel Photo Mondays. Please do visit the other bloggers participating today for the link up below.
If you are Visiting London – Check out some of these other posts below
Things to do in Greenwich, London
25 cool and fun places to visit in London
Exploring the East End in London
Discovering London at night time
Cool attractions to explore in Southbank
Conclusion to Eating London’s East End
Thanks so much for inviting me on this food tour with Eating London, all opinions and thoughts are my own and it really is an amazing food experience that I highly recommend.
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Our first visit to Bengal Village restaurant in London- really delicious and fresh-tasting food. We had the garlic and chilli chicken (good chilli heat) and the Karahi (fish in a delicately spiced tomato and onion sauce).
Eating in London has really becoming a major draw to the food scene here, Bengal Village sounds yummy, thanks for sharing
Heading to London in September – thank you for this post! Can’t wait to try all this amazing food 🙂
London is a bit like LA, so many different foods from different countries become a part of the local food experience. The Indian food there is amazing! Cheese too ^_^
we definitely must do this the next time we are in London! Great read! Thanks!
This looks like an amazing tour! I think my favorite part would have been the cheese tasting. 🙂
I always love a good food tour, and what a great spot to do one! London has some amazing food–looks like you got some great food! Yum!
I love tours like this which include history and a scenic tour of the area as well – really is a full package experience with the added bonus of awesome food 😀 And bread pudding is my favorite – couldn’t get enough of it on my 12 months abroad in the UK!
Your pictures and words are so dear to how I’d be traveling if I were in London, food tour and all.
Ahhh. must visit these places
Yum! I’ll be in London next month. I’ll have to check some of this food out. Sometimes it can be…er…difficult to find good English food, but this looks amazing!
I used to shop at Spitalfield market, and even better at Borough Market when I lived in London. Brick lane is one of my favourite parts of town too 🙂
Ah, if you are still there… one of the best fish and chips you can try is in Wivenhoe, Essex – you take the train from Liverpool St. Station 🙂
My daughter lives in London…she has to take me there. This October!
An army marches on its stomache, Noel? 🙂 I ‘m on the towpaths this week. Happy travels!
Wait – you had a chance to try a bacon sandwich and you missed it?! That’s simply tragic! Looks like you had a good time though and also got to see an interesting part of the city.