London's passion for all things fresh and homemade has created a city full of markets, shops and restaurants that ask you to slow down and enjoy your food. While in town this week we've hit three of London's best food halls. While they all have a lot in commonâeach sells a range of packaged gourmet items, fresh fruits, vegetables and prepared items, and offers the choice of table service or to goâthey also shine in different ways.
Patricia Michelson's La Fromagerie (middle photo above) has two locations. The Moxon Street shop offers a small market with fresh produce, a large variety of teas, gourmet items and accessories in addition to its amazing cheese room. Table service in the back of the shop provides you with several choices of tasty, homemade food. A recent lunch included a salad of white asparagus and monk's beard with an anchovy, chili and lemon dressing, and lasagna with chestnut mushrooms to accompany a stellar cheese plate. Next door is The Ginger Pig, an excellent butcher with some of the most amazing looking savory pies in town.
Ottolenghi (left photo above) has three locations. A few gourmet items are available but the focus is on the freshly made food which is available to go or served on site. The croissants, meringues and macaroons rule.
FlÃ¢neur is the largest of the three, and features a market with fresh fruits and vegetables and shelf after shelf of chocolate, spices, tea and gourmet items. A large selection of prepared items is available for take out, and there are plenty of tables to enjoy their freshly prepared food onsite.