If you’ve ever been to this eclectic area of North London, you’d know that street food rules.
Camden Market and the roads around the lock are chocka with quirky stalls offering up dishes inspired from cuisines all over the globe; the air is rich with the delicious smells of burgers, batter and grease (enough to make your arteries weep after a few whiffs!), stall holders tempt you in with tiny tasters… the atmosphere is fun, busy and it’s all too easy to give in to cravings and have your feed and then some.
However, this is London. It’s a huge expanse of a city, you’ve been on your feet for seven hours today, trudging around Piccadilly Circus, stomping down The Mall, doing laps of Regent Street and dragging yourself around Harrods. It’s most likely a bit chilly, the wind is picking up and the clouds are threatening a downpour. Welcome to England everyone!
You know what, sometimes, there’s nothing more I want than to sit down, chill out and eat my food with a knife and fork like a civilised being and avoid the sticky-hands / sauce-all-down-my-chin risk that inevitably arises when trying to grab a bite on the go.
For this, I’ve comprised a quick list of some great affordable alternatives to Camden’s street food, have a read through a few of my favourite restaurants in the area.
Burger fans can’t even call themselves such if they haven’t yet had a Hache. This is potentially one of the best burger’s I’ve had in London; meat cooked to perfection, choose your brioche or ciabatta bun and don’t pass up the option of the side of sweet potato fries. My go-to dish is always the Steak Louisiana, served up with a medium rare burger, topped with melted cheese and crunchy peanut-butter. Burger’s don’t get much better than this.
[Image Credit: HacheBurgers.com]
This fish restaurant on Camden’s parkway doesn’t do things by halves. Hook is hardly your average fish and chip joint so if you want to take your seafood up a notch, look no further. Hook cooks their fresh fish in panko breadcrumbs or tempura batter and punches in bags of flavour with a mix of herbs and spices. The fries are addictive, with their seaweed salted thick cut chips – you’ve been warned. If you find yourself in Camden for midday, go for lunch and try their day menu, I can recommend the fish tacos that taste infinitely better than they sound.
[Image Credit: HuffingtonPost.co.uk and TimeOut.com]
This Greek Cypriot eatery is set back from the main road on Bayham Street, but make it your mission to seek this one out. Daphne has been around since the 1950’s and if they’ve been serving up Moussaka this good for that long, it’s not difficult to understand this restaurants longevity.
This Japanese café near to the station could easily be missed; it has a modest front with a rather haphazard mix of Japanese decorations adorning the windows, step inside and it’s still a pretty casual dining area. Taste the food however, and you begin to cotton on to its popularity. This place fills up quick so bag a seat when you can and order yourself a Katsu curry; better than a Wagamama’s and a few quid cheaper too.
[Image Credit: BentoCafe.co.uk and Locappy.com]
This American Diner on Camden High Street is again, one of those places that might have a dingy façade but once you’re though the door you’ve got yourself a contemporary buzzing bistro with cosy corners and a menu to drool at. Blues Kitchen specialises in hearty all-American food, so think lots of sticky Buffalo wings, pulled pork, big slabs of ribs and filling burgers. Order meat, meat, meat and more meat and finish off with a side of Mac n’ Cheese.
[Image Credit TheBluesKitchen.com]
I’ll finish off with a mention of my favourite Italian on Pratt Street. This place is a cosy, friendly restaurant with authentic Italian dishes – you can’t go wrong here. The portions are generous and the prices are great; choose from a wide selection of pizzas, salads and pasta dishes, top it off with a dessert and waddle off home. Finito!