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May 19, 2008 05:21 AM

[London] Brixton Market

Just moved south of the river and have heard good things (especially around the Latin selections) at Brixton market. I've picked up a few items from other threads (arepas, etc) but was hoping to have a couple questions answered by those in the know:

- Anyone have a butcher reco in the market? Heard I can get Latin cuts there.

- What's the schedule of the market?

- Any other recos?

Thanks all.


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  1. Hello there I'm at Brixton market every week or every two weeks sooo...

    I go to three butchers in the market and I have another as a back up for Colombian items. My main butcher and the one who I am practically on go over for dinner terms with is across from the very large English all pork butcher inside Brixton Village, one of the indoor market areas. It is halal and has an excellent selection with AMAZING prices. It's also smaller and much easier to get bargains at; I regularly get a kilo of lamb or goat for 3 quid. Just down the hall/road/thing from that is a Colombian butcher which carries skirt/falda steak and other Colombian cuts at outrageously cheap rates. I go to the aforementioned pork place for pork (while hiding from my main butcher in shame as I'm still within eye sight) and I use Las Americas (huge Colombian store) on Electric Avenue as backup for all things Colombian. The market closes at night. I generally eat a snack at Las Americas; papas, empanadas, chicharron, etc. They've also got little pomegranate icecreams now among other summer juices and such. Another Colombian place with seating is inside the covered market. A Guyanese cart serves up curries at not the cheapest of prices on Brixton Station Road. Also, Jeff the Chef's cart has good Jamaican patties. Down further towards Streatham is O Cantinho for Portugese. They have really good stuff sometimes; I had an incredible rabbit special there once for ei. Beers are CHEAP too.

    2 Replies
    1. re: JFores

      do you find halal meat good? i always find it lacking in flavour

      1. re: t_g

        The quality of what I've gotten there has rarely bothered me (a few overly tough pieces of goat, but that's about it.) I usually cook goat or lamb which are quite flavorful in themselves, so that might be why I notice no difference.

    2. I've lived in Brixton for more years than I care to remember. I don't really use the butchers apart from the Colombian one JF mentions because I'm not overly impressed with their hygiene. There used to be an amazing and very good value butcher in Loughborough Junction but unfortunately he closed down a few months ago. I now go to a butcher on Rosendale Road in West Dulwich but I would use the Portuguese butcher on Atlantic Road (the one with a good selection of fruit and veg outside) at a pinch. For fish I go to Mash and Son (also on Atlantic Rd, near the Portuguese butcher) but my friend swears by Gareth in the covered market (he's the one kind of in the middle, not on the corner, but between two other stalls).

      I get my veg delivered these days from Riverford Organics, but in the days when I used the market my favoured stall was on Electric Avenue near the Asian supermarket (Wing Tai). Not sure if he's still there though (sadly, the market's a lot smaller than it used to be).

      Other shops I visit regularly: A&C Continental on the corner of Atlantic Road. This is my absolute favourite shop in Brixton and I've been shopping there for fifteen years. I practically go into mourning every August when they close down for a month (owners are British Portuguese).

      Brixton Wholefoods (further down Atlantic Road, past the junction with Coldharbour Lane). Amazing for herbs and spices, and all manner of healthy stuff.

      Wing Tai. Aforementioned Asian supermarket. Seemingly open all the time, and with a pretty good range given it's size.

      There's also a pretty good pizza place in the market which is going to be opening a bakery shortly.

      ETA: the market is open roughly 8 to 5ish, with a half day on Wednesdays. Closed Sunday.

      4 Replies
      1. re: greedygirl

        I'm a fan of Gareth, but I go to Mash and Son for my shellfish (especially oysters which are very fresh there.) Wing Tai is quite good, but it can be a little expensive for what you're getting; still the only solidly reliable Asian store in Brixton which I know of besides the one that's waaaay off from the market heading south. A&C Continental is also GREAT and it is one of the only reliable and sooort of reasonable places that I can find Sicilian capers in salt. I love their cheese selection. Great values.

        1. re: JFores

          I also love their chorizo, semi-dried tomatoes in oil, fresh herbs and always buy my De Cecco pasta there (cheaper than the supermarkets).

          Really nice people too. It's a family business and they're always really kind. I thought I was going to faint outside their shop on a really hot day once and they made me sit inside near a fan and drink lucozade! Bless.

          1. re: greedygirl

            As you know I was down at Brixton Market last week to try out Franco Manca. I haven't been a Brixton regular since the days of the Bug Bar and Basement Jaxx playing at the Loughborough Junction so took the chance to explore anew. A few places caught my eye and I will probably head back on a monthly, 2 monthly basis and load up. I certainly like the look of A&C, I find lots of Italian and Mediterranean delis in London to be unremarkable so it's nice to hear about people getting it right. Thankfully I've finally found myself a local Italian deli worthy of the tag (Giacobazzi's). I also increasingly find Lebanese and Polish grocery stores a good source of pan-Mediterranean produce and ingredients, for example Red Pig Polish deli on Camden High Street has an impressive selection of Spanish deli items at good prices.

            I checked out Las Americas cafe/bakery and we grabbed an arepa (lousy), empanada (good) and washed it down with a tin of guarana. We were comped a Colombian dairy drink consisting of milk and oats, was very tasty, kind of like liquefied porridge, I think that he called it "avela". And a good coffee to round our snacking off. Lots of Colombian customers, an elderly lady was recommending the ice creams to me, she had opted for blackcurrant flavour. Not much English spoken, a good place to practise Spanish in relaxed surroundings, nice chap working the counter. Noted the name of another Colombian place, Santafereno on 3rd Av in Brixton Village, seemed quite convivial.

            1. re: greedygirl

              and they sell Guarana in A&C too..... to remind me of my days in Brazil...

        2. Thanks both of you. I was especially hoping to find skirt steak and short ribs there, so it looks like I'm in luck. I can't wait to explore.

          3 Replies
          1. re: CTownFeedR

            Short ribs is not a cut commonly found in the UK - you'll have to get a butcher to cut them for you specially. There's actually a thread about it:


            1. re: greedygirl

              True, but it is common for Latin Americans. That's why I am expecting to find it there.


              1. re: CTownFeedR

                Can't say as I've seen short ribs there, but I haven't really been looking.

          2. Market was cool. Stopped into AC for chorizo, peppers, and cheese, Marsh and son for shrimp and the Colombian butcher for skirt steak. All looked good.

            I was there early, so all i tried was a patty from Jeff the Chef. Great! Filling to crust ratio was generous. Filling (beef) was rich and savory. Can't go wrong at 1.20.

            Thanks for the tips, I'll be back.


            8 Replies
            1. re: CTownFeedR

              Did they have short ribs at the Colombian butcher? I had a long discussion with a butcher in Shropshire today, who said that they're called flat ribs over here, and that he hasn't sold any for ten years!

              1. re: CTownFeedR

                I got beef for the first time on Saturday from the Colombian butcher. They'd run out of skirt so he recommended a slice of topside instead. I wasn't that impressed to be honest - I don't think it had been properly hung, it was Australian not British (!) and it was definitely not as good as the beef from my normal butcher. Will try the skirt though as it's hard to find elsewhere.

                Colombian chorizo was great though as an ingredient in my pork burgers.

                1. re: greedygirl

                  Thanks. That's a tad disappointing.

                  I will still try the skirt when I get down there next to see how it is. Just remember skirt can be tough if not treated properly so think about acidic-based marinading the meat to help break down the connective tissue.


                  1. re: CTownFeedR

                    I often get skirt from that butchers in brixton, and its pretty good.
                    last time i marinaded it in fresh pinapple juice, soy, and other stuff, before grilling on the BBQ. turned out great!

                    1. re: foreignmuck

                      I really don't see why they're selling Australian beef though. I've been spoilt with great beef from my now sadly departed butcher for years, and it didn't compare that favourably. Not bad, still quite tasty, but not top notch.

                      1. re: greedygirl

                        i always thought the beef from those latin butchers were from Brazil. maybe they change it around depending on supply

                        1. re: foreignmuck

                          Brazil... Australia... Think of the food miles!

              2. Honey mangoes have arrived in Brixton Market! I bought a box of six on my way home from work last night for £3.50.

                11 Replies
                1. re: greedygirl

                  Sweet, they were £1.50 at Borough this past weekend.


                    1. re: greedygirl

                      Ah, but still doesn't beat the £6.50 for 12 Indian mangoes (Kesar or Alphonso) from Kingsbury Fruit & Veg :-) The kesars have comfortably outshone the alphonsos this year. I do like the honey mangoes too, I'm guessing that they come from Pakistan.

                      1. re: oonth

                        Just went to the Pizza place - Franco Manca on Market Row having been meaning to go since it changed hands.

                        I know Metro did a big feature and raved about it recently and Time out wrote very highy of it last year, so I arrived early just as it opened at 12. Its currently only open for lunch which is a shame, but they are expanding and hopfully switching locations so they can open in the evenings too. (Their current location within the Arcade means they have to shut when the arcade shuts)..

                        Anyway, the pizza in one word : incredible. These guys are seriously passionate about thier product and it shows. The pizzas are cooked in a coal fired oven at 600 degrees for only 36 seconds, and the Napoli style sourdough base comes out soft and pillowy with charred bubbles on the outside, almost like a naan bread. I went for the Chorizo special which had dried and wet chorizo on top, together with buffalo mozzerella. At £5.60 this was the most expensive pizza on the menu, and was the perfect size for one. I think you can get basic pizzas for under £4 which is incredible value. Plus monmouth coffee for £1 and free filterd tap water.

                        Now i've never had pizza in Naples before, but it reminded me restaurants like Lombardi's in NYC, which Jeffery Steingarten (who wrote The Man Who Ate Everthing) claimes is one of the best pizza joints in the world. Franco's in my opinion exceeded Lombardi's.

                        Im so happy that such a great, independent restaurant exists in my neighbourhood.

                        1. re: foreignmuck

                          Sounds great and I'll have to try it as soon as I get back to London at the end of the summer, but with all due respect to Steingarten (and he's damn good at his job) Lombardi's is so bad that it's nearly inedible. Not even top 10 for pizza in New York.

                          1. re: foreignmuck

                            But the question is how does it compare to the real deal from Italy? NY pizza is a different beast, no? Anyway, must get myself down there soon and give it a try.

                            1. re: foreignmuck

                              Thanks for the report. You've probably seen my earlier report and whilst I don't place it in the top echelon of pizza I've eaten globally including Naples, I do like what these guys are trying to do and would certainly be happy to have it in my neighbourhood. Did you get fresh basil on your pizza or are they still [criminally] using dried herbs?

                              1. re: oonth

                                We went on Saturday and I am pleased to report that fresh basil was in evidence on the pizzas, which were fantastic. Best pizzas I've had outside Italy. I had the wild mushroom and anchovy, which comes without cheese. A good portion of meaty mushrooms (not sure which kind) and proper, salted anchovies. Simple but very, very good. The homemade lemonade was also really nice (despite looking rather dubious when it arrived in an old-fashioned stoppered bottle). All of the waiters were Italian, and there was a constant queue for tables. I'm really happy that they're doing so well.