If you are a food lover, and if you like to get the best quality ingredients, then you must visit Borough Market . Admittedly I wouldn’t consider it a place to start doing your weekly ‘big shop’, unless you have a bank balance the size of a small country’s national debt. I’d also advise that you go early, unless you enjoy the feeling of strangers constantly pressing against you and standing on your heels (each to their own!). There is a lunchtime market on Mondays and Tuesdays with the full market Wednesday – Saturday, and it gets VERY busy.
Stupidly, Grenson and I made our visit mid-afternoon. Bearing in mind Grenson finds a mere dead leaf on the ground to be a source of endless fascination, you can imagine just how much all of the tasty morsels spread across the market floor would entice him.
Cleverly, I knew exactly where I was heading and wisely skirted around the market edge. For if you do ever find yourself in Borough Market, having ticked the boxes marked ‘food lover, and purchaser of quality produce’ and if you would also consider ticking the box ‘lover of fine coffee’, then no visit is complete without popping into Monmouth Coffee Co.
This place is a coffee lover’s dream. Not only can you get your fix of quality espresso based beverage complete with excellent latte art, which you all know by now impresses me greatly …
(sorry couldn’t resist a sip of the one above before I remembered to take a photo)
… but you can also buy their beans to take away so that you can attempt to produce the same quality latte art at home (and fail miserably in my case, of course).
Unfortunately, due to its popular location it can be common to find a large queue, sometimes snaking into the street outside. But don’t worry, there is a small army of the best barristas around, working away inside to bring you your coffee. In fact, it can be quite enjoyable waiting in line and witnessing the well oiled machine at work, as each member of staff carries out their specified task, making up the cogs in the wheel that leads to your little steaming caffeine hit. So the wait never seems to be too long. Especially if you don’t have some fool in front of you, messing up the queuing system because his puppy insists on sitting slap bang in the middle of the busy thoroughfare with an expression that says, ‘this isn’t the park, what kind of walk do you call this?’.
Once I’d enticed Grenson out of the way and over to a seat, with the aid of a chicken flavoured chewy stick, I was able to sit back and watch the world go by.
There is nothing like entering a little caffeine bubble of serenity. When you finally finish off the smooth remnants of the latte art now at the bottom of your cup, the caffeine should begin to kick in and embolden you, ready to go outside for the next round of artisan food purchasing.
Unfortunately the pick me up of a good coffee isn’t available to all. If that is the case for you, then a full day of shopping at the market can leave you a little pooped out. You have been warned!
The Man and the Dog.