Exmouth Market is one of our favorite markets in London, helped by its proximity to us here in Islington. During lunchtime on weekdays, a smattering of food stalls pop up in the middle of the street, selling pad thai, barbecue, burritos and even food from Ghana (Ghanian food? Ghanan food?). Once those stalls close up shop for the day, the buzz does not leave Exmouth Market. The street is full of fantastic restaurants, a few good pubs, some fun stores and even the salon where Julie gets her hair done. So, I decided to venture down during a weekday lunch period, have a walkabout, a little bite to eat and snap some photos to show why even more people should come to Clerkenwell and explore Exmouth Market.
Like I noted, the food stalls pop up during the week from 12:00-3:00pm and Exmouth Market fills with local office workers, grabbing delicious cheap food on the run. Moro, which runs a highly-rated, fine dining restaurant a few yards away, offers up a different dish each day for £5 like spiced lamb with couscous. There is some tasty pulled pork barbecue sandwiches and some uncomfortably large German sausages. No matter what you pick up, you won’t spend much more than a fiver for lunch. Now that’s a good deal.
Once 3pm rolls around and the purveyors fold up their tents and pack up their vans, Exmouth Market does not go quiet. The main drag is one my favorite streets to eat on in all of London. Hummus Bros, a small group of fast casual restaurants focused around hummus and pitas (I know how boring that sounds), is always one of my mainstays for a quick bite when I feel like something lighter or have been especially mean to my body/liver recently. The hummus and falafel wrap is my go to.
If you fancy something a little heavier (aka containing meat), than there is Blackfoot, a pig-centric restaurant a few doors down, or Medcalf, a former butcher shop turned seasonal, modern British restaurant. For more high quality, upscale Middle-Eastern flavor, Moro and its baby sister Morito, fit the bill. Morito, which does tapas bar with African and Mediterranean flair, is one of my favorite small plates spots in London.
If you manage to save room for something sweet, or are just stopping by Exmouth Market to hit up fancy men’s clothing shop, The Content Store and feel like a little peckish, then there a few options up and down the street. I like to hit up Gail’s Artisan Bakery, for some amazing sweet treats. Or, if you need coffee, Caravan, located on the other end of the street, roasts its own beans and is a great option. If its the weekend, Caravan also offers NYC-approved brunch, which unfortunately includes the long queues.
After eating hummus, some sausage, a little spiced lamb, having a decadent brownie and a flat white, do not forget to stop by Borough Wines and grab a bottle of obscure wine or local craft beer before waddling home. That is why Exmouth Market is so spectacular for food lovers. It offers a little something for everyone. From fast, cheap street food stalls to £100 dinners for two. While other markets like Borough get a lot of hype and have some crazy crowds, Exmouth is pleasantly busy and ever bit as good as any other market in London.