Broadway Market runs from the bottom of London fields down to Regent’s Canal. In the 1890s the scruffy patch in Hackney was filled with fruit and vegetable sellers who pitched up their stalls in wind, rain or sun.
By the 90s only a few sellers were left, until a transformed Saturday market was launched in 2004. You can still pick up the essentials, but the market is now the mecca for foodie Londoners who want to avoid the chaos of Borough market. And when you see the fresh bread, homemade cheeses, jams, pickles and olives you’ll see why.
As well as the market stalls there’s a number of permanent sites that make the road worth a visit whether the Saturday market is on or not.
THE CAT AND MUTTON
Every London street needs a fine public house. And Broadway Market can mix it with the best of them thanks to the newly revamped Cat and Mutton pub at the northern tip of the street. Living up to the standards of the fussy eaters and drinkers on the street was always going to be a tall order, but it’s one the Cat and Mutton doesn’t fail.
There’s a lovely warm atmosphere inside and the drinks menu hits the mark, including the cocktails list that features the tremendous London Fields Iced Tea. The kitchen is run by the celebrated White Rabbit chefs and is unashamedly gastropub.
76 Broadway Market
COFFEE FROM CLIMPSONS
Climpsons and Sons was an old Butcher before it was reincarnated into Broadway Market’s most popular coffee destination. The man behind the Climpsons roast started life as a market vendor at the Saturday market (you can still find him there) before taking over his permanent place on the market and installing his own roastery. The queue on Saturday can snake into the street, and while that won’t speed the baristas up, it’s for a very good reason.
67, Broadway Market
GÖZLEME AT SARAY BROADWAY CAFE
For a light lunch on a budget, look no further than the gözleme at Saray Broadway Cafe. Prepared right in front of you, the savoury pastry dish from Antalya in Turkey, costs just a few pounds. The base is made of dough, it’s brushed with butter and eggs then filled with toppings and fried.
The traditional Turkish filling of goat’s curd and spinach is a hit among hungry market shoppers, but there are plenty of other vegetable or meat varieties being thrown onto the saç griddle. Not sold? Then join the hoard of onlookers watching them being made in the window.
58 Broadway Market
PIE AND MASH AT F. COOKE
Pie-and-mash shops serving jellied eels – as a side dish or in the pies – was a nineteenth century staple in London, but changing tastes has led to gradual decline. Only a handful of proper pie and mash shops have survived and even fewer still serve jellied eels.
F. Cooke is one of them and been serving fresh pie and jellied eels since 1900. The interior of the shop is still intact, and is worth a visit alone. If you’re feeling brave, try the eels, otherwise a homemade steak and ale pie with eel liquor sauce is a must.
9 Broadway Market
PETERS & CO GIN PALACE
Peters & Co takes over the venerable F. Cooke premises from 7pm until late on Saturday evening, serving an array of gin that will delight even the most seasoned connoisseur. There’s pretty much a gin for every mood, as well as local craft beers and English wines.
For the peckish Peters & Co serve up local cheeses, British charcuterie and puddings, along with the the ultimate indulgence for a gin fuelled evening: Gin and Juniper home-smoked salmon.
9 Broadway Market