Grocery Shopping for Students [London]
Hi, I'll be moving to London soon and I was wondering which places are great for bargains and grocery shopping for students on a budget. I love to cook and apart from the usual Tesco, Sainsburys I've heard of, which other places/ markets are best? I'll be living in Euston, near Camden.
Bear in mind that travel costs can wipe out any price advantage local markets may have. An Underground trip is at least £1.50 each way (using an Oyster card, which is the pre-pay system or £4.00 cash) so you really need to be within 10 mins walk. Busses are a bit cheaper. A secondhand bike and a GOOD lock could make sense. Look here:
Borough Market should be avoided unless your surname is Rockerfeller!
The German supermarket Lidl is your friend. They have great deals on fruit and veg, and a lot of their stuff, especially the deli meats and sausages, are really good quality. I don't buy any other meat though, apart from the free range chicken they've started selling. Also good for chocolate, tinned tomatoes etc, prosecco, frozen prawns, German-style rye bread, cat food (!) etc etc. They also have regular promotions - it was Spanish week last week and I got white marinated anchovies, and an enormous chorizo iberico for a fiver!
There's bound to be one near you - check their website.
It depends where in Euston you'll be living, but I'd recommend doing your weekly shop in Morrisons (just up the road from Camden Stables Market) and then getting the bus back. I find our bill is always cheaper when we shop there and it's massive - they have everything I've ever needed. (Great world food sections!) Their fresh fish counter is very good, though we still tend to buy meat from a separate butcher.
Inverness Street (near Camden Town tube station) has some fruit and veg stalls, though I don't think they're any cheaper than in supermarkets.
You could visit Marylebone Farmers Market. Not cheap but a nice foodie experience anyway. http://www.lfm.org.uk/mary.asp
Inverness Street in Camden is fab for fruit and veg and far far far cheaper than the supermarket, bags of cherries for a £1 for instance. I go there not just for the price, but because they are really good. I have had lovely fennel, herbs and an assortment of every lettuce imaginable from one stall.
If you are too busy studying to cook The Stables Market reduces all it's noodle dishes around 5-6pm. A pound can get you very far.
And if you want to splash out I recomend Asakusa sushi bar on Eversholt St. The carpet may give you a headache but the food is great.
I live in Brixton and the market is a good place for cheap fruit and veg. I don't know whether it's the cheapest, as that's not a priority for me these days, but a student who posts on these boards, JFores, does most of his shopping here. Personally, I wouldn't buy meat on the market (fish is good though) but he does regularly.