Has been a favourite of mine since returning to London where I both lived and worked within easy walking distance. They never travel all that well but if you get their at a time when the queue isn’t out of the door then it’s in my opinion THE place in London to get some proper fish and chips. Their chips have always been crisp and fluffy and their fish battered to crisp perfection yet deliciously moist. Avoid beer and you’ll get a great meal at around the £10 mark.
A few months ago during a party I remember being asked something along the lines of “OK, so I’ve got £10 and I want something good to eat, where do I go?”, I thought for a bit and gave a few recommendations but thought at the time that the question needed more thought; and the opportunity to write something aimed at quicker eats and for a less fancy event.
I’ve tried to focus on places where you can get a proper meal opposed to nibbles and attempted to cover a range of tastes. I know South London and the West End so that’s where my recommendations are – but if you would like to add your own in comments then please do!
Churros are long sticks of deep fried doughnut coated in sugar and the perfect accompaniment for the rich, almost ganache like hot chocolate served up at Wahaca. You can have the drink plain or with a hint of chilli and a shot of tequila but either way it’s a perfect pick me-up for those looking for an extra sugar boost to get them through the hell of a busy covent garden trip. The hot chocolate is so good I’ve rejected a beer in favour of it on over half of my visits.
Burgers have become a bit of a thing in London over the past few years and because of that it has felt to me like the prices, to be fair along with the quality of the ingredients has rocketed rather. Now when looking for a bit of American themed fast-food for cheap I look for hot-dogs and those from the Dogfather are awesome – £6 gets you a dog with a topping of meat chilli, crusty bread (no soggy white) roll, cheese and more. Great stuff – though note it’s only on White Cross on Saturdays.
The a la carte at The Canton brings in the punters like no-bodies business but the thing I return for time and again are the toasties. The fois-gras one got most attention when it was first introduced but it’s a bit pricey and leaves not much change from a tenner; but the haggis version at half the price leaves more than enough for a pint of ale to go with, and allows you to sit at the bar.
Of the near 25 places I’ve sampled burritos across London Benitos Hat is my preferred choice by quite a bit so if you fancy a burrito and are in town then it’s the only place to go (if you ask me). Their original venue is still best and their juicy steak is their best filling.
While a lot of the famous market has changed over the years, many of the old stores have left and the ability to find a bargain has been reduced Marias cafe still sits in the same spot (give or take) and serves up a good English breakfast and a good English welcome (at a great price) to those able to fight through the hordes of tourists and photographers. The winning item for me is the bubble and squeak, top it with a soft fried egg for a perfect hangover dish.
I used to live in a house that was near enough to Negril that they would deliver, happy times, when I fancy jerk chicken this is where I go. The chicken is always tender and moist and the jerk seasoning hot enough to feel the burn but not burn your taste-buds off; with the added gravy providing if it was needed even more juice. I’m also a big fan of the curried goat/mutton. Only thing to note – it’s bring your own beer.