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Oct 29, 2007 01:03 PM

Anchovies in London?


I'm looking particularly for white anchovies or at the very least the darker and longer cured anchovies. They have to be whole, small and absolutely not what I've seen in cans here thus far. I would really prefer them in a very large jar or sold directly out of an olive oil filled tray as I would've gotten them back home or in Italy. Thus far, I haven't seen them anywhere. The only canned anchovies that I got were far too large and had an all together different taste. I need them in order to create my winter supply of cured anchovies for bread toppings and various Ligurian pies.

Thank you very much,


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  1. Justin --
    I think I've seen what you're looking for at Lina Stores on Brewer Street in Soho. If they don't have them go round the corner to Camisa on Old Compton Street

    1 Reply
    1. re: qnseats

      Awesome I'll take a walk over there tomorrow or Wed. Jarred or in a tray behind glass? The latter is definitely preferred.


    2. You know, for an 18 year old, I am continuously impressed by the things you're on the lookout for. When are you having us over for dinner?

      2 Replies
      1. re: kristainlondon

        I'd be happy to do a big meal for some Chowhounders, actually. I've got a huge kitchen here. It would just be a matter of timing it so that every single person on my floor wasn't cooking dinner. My food isn't exactly restaurant quality or anything (worked in one for a few months though. Italian. Line cook. Hot. So much Spanish.) but it's enough to get some culinary worship out of my students here and my mom.

        Didn't get a chance to get to SoHo today though. I'll get there tomorrow hopefully. Wednesdays are so busy and I've got a morning job now too. ::World begins spinning::

        Oh shit, I just remembered I have three fish in the fridge. Wow that's not good. Fish dinner tomorrow!

        1. re: kristainlondon

          yep. in pete townsends immortal words, the kids are all allright. to the think the only wine i knew at that age in bombay was ruby golconda - i'd hesitate to use it to clean my sink today.

        2. Why don't you try new billingsgate market (ie london's early morning fish market) out near canary wharf? I went a few years ago and bought a big tub of can go there by tube and DLR but go early as its generally all over by 9am

          6 Replies
          1. re: DietStartsTomorrow

            What's prime time? About 6am? How much would a tub be and how could I realistically carry it back without anchovying myself to death? Yes I used that as a verb.

            1. re: JFores

              I'm not sure I can think of a better way to die...

              Moving back towards the original question, the only kinds of anchovy I'm familiar with are the canned kind, the dry salted kind, and boquerones. I'd be interested in a source of the second kind in London; haven't bought them since I moved here from Oxford. I've seen boquerones in Sainsbury's, specifically the one behind the N1 centre in Islington.

              But I certainly don't want to put you off going to the market! I should go too at some point; I live a lot closer than you do.

              1. re: JFores

                I try to be there around 6 if I can, it's busier than earlier but there is still plenty there. I've never noticed fresh anchovies though. (Edited to say - you're not after fresh, I've definitely seen tubs of cured ones) Of course, I could have been looking in the wrong direction, distracted by squid or something! Generally fish is sold in big polystyrene boxes that you are given in bin bags. The smaller quantities or crab frozen stuff is however it is packed then in a plastic bag. You might want to take some extra bags or ask for some if you are carrying on public transport. I live in SE London and take the car but sometimes even then have problems lugging stuff from the market to the carpark!

                1. re: ali patts

                  Hi J - the last time I went was some years ago and I recall picking up a big circular tub of white anchovies about 30cms across...they weren't fresh - they were cured in like a vinagreete - the type you get in delis. I went by public transport to buy fresh oysters and I just picked them up along the way. From my experience you can buy in small amounts. But as i said, i haven't been there for ages. its defo worth a trip though - as is smithfield market if you're a meat-eater.

                  1. re: DietStartsTomorrow

                    I'll head over during reading week. What are the best days to go? I might get oysters too; I've been craving them.

                    1. re: JFores

                      Any day except Sunday and Monday (if memory serves). I have found fridays disproportionately busy in the past (saturdays are obviously busy as more provate customers go) - but otherwise it doesn't seem to make a lot of difference. If you go early enough it doesn't really make a lot of difference, except Sunday/Monday.