Brixton’s Best Food Shops

Written by on April 8, 2011 in Uncategorized - 15 Comments

Rachel Manley, who runs the Breakfast Club, gives us a guide of Brixton’s best food shops

Brixton has arguably one of the best food markets in London and it just keeps getting better.

But with the men shouting ‘half price’ at you and the overwhelming selection, it can be a pretty intimidating place to know where to start… here are my recommendations for the best food shops in Brixton.

1. Nour cash and carry, Electric Avenue
Known as favourite shop in my house, the tiny entrance hides what I think is by far the best version of the generic shops along Electric Avenue. Worth a wander around, if only to make new discoveries in random corners. This is where I buy fruit and vegetables particularly huge bunches of fresh herbs including lovely thyme and dill, onions, garlic, ginger, chillies and packs of cherry tomatoes for 50p! I also buy spices, pomegranate molasses, chopped tomatoes, tinned beans, rice and lentils here. All much better quality than the supermarket and loads cheaper. You can also find huge tubs of yoghurt and labneh in the fridges as well as haloumi.

2. Wing Tai
The Chinese supermarket on Electric Avenue is really well stocked. I buy huge bottles of soy sauce and fish sauce, there’s lemongrass and Thai basil in the fridges and I recently bought everything I needed to make sushi for about £10. While the staff aren’t exactly friendly and they don’t speak great English, they will help you find what you’re looking for. Don’t be afraid to ask!

3. Dagon’s Ltd.
There’s some pretty unappetising fish for sale in Brixton Market, dig a little deeper and you can find some fantastic stuff. Mash & Sons on Atlantic Rd is ok, but my very favourite is Dagon’s in Brixton Village. They’re always really busy (definitely a good sign) and they can offer advice on the type of fish to buy and how to cook it. Best of all, they’ll fillet and prepare the fish for you if you ask nicely. Salad Club also recommend Jeffries by Franco Manca.

4. Continental Delicatessen
Turn right out of Brixton station, keep going until you hit Atlantic Rd and the bright blue awning of Continental deli is right in front of you. It’s worth a visit for all the usual deli stuff, in particular the great cheese selection, delicious chorizos and Portuguese custard tarts. I also spotted homemade pestos in the fridge. Rosie’s Deli also has a nice selection of deli foodstuffs and you can get a cake and coffee while you’re there.

5. Giggly pig
Much like fish, finding meat in Brixton Market can be hit and miss. I tend to go to the farmers’ market on Brixton Station Road on Sundays as I know it’s all local and free-range. Although a little lacklustre, it’s worth it for the excellent sausages and pork from Giggly Pig. If you head down later on (after 1pm) you can usually get a good deal. There’s also a really good farmer’s market on on Saturday’s opposite Oval station.

6. Breads etc
Breads etc has been open in Clapham for a while and recently opened in Brixton Market. This is a chance to buy their top quality bread without the queues they usually have in Clapham, plus they do a mean brunch.

Sometimes I feel like I’m only scratching the surface, like when I discovered the fantastic chorizo in Continental Delicatessan or that you can get huge bags of ground almonds in Nour Cash and Carry. Where are your favourite food shops in Brixton? Leave suggestions in the comments.

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15 Comments on "Brixton’s Best Food Shops"

  1. London Bed July 9, 2011 at 7:32 pm ·

    There is a great little bakery on Landsdown Road…the best stodge for a hang over.

  2. laurawardphotography May 24, 2011 at 9:13 am ·

    I’m a big fan of WAG Free too. Being gluten intolerant it’s such a luxury to have a place completley dedicated to food I can actually eat. Countless times I’ve asked waiters ‘does this have gluten in it?’ and they have absolutely no idea. They’ll go and ask the chef and still have no idea.

    I do the taste test with friends all the time. They’ll eat a bite of my WAG free cake and won’t believe that it’s gluten free. Absolutely amazing cakes!

  3. MericanaBoy May 23, 2011 at 9:34 pm ·

    I really, really enjoy the WAG Free Bakery in Brixton Village. I am not intolerant to Wheat or Gluten, but it doesn’t matter–they have amazing cakes, pies and bread which just happens to be ‘sans farine’…which must be a good thing!

    I too really love Mash’s, the AC, Wing Tai, and Nour. While I sometimes find it somewhat self-righteous (and reeking of hubris), I do appreciate some of the things available in Brixton Whole Foods which are difficult to find elsewhere. And of course, on a value-for-money basis, we shouldn’t forget our friends at Lidl.

  4. Marty May 16, 2011 at 7:43 pm ·

    Bread from Franco Manca’s oven sold in nearby Wild Caper deli is one of the best in whole London. Continental Delicatessen are great, very friendly and sensibly priced. Mash and Sons are the most reliable fishmongers (for about 80 years). And Rosie…we all love Rosie,don’t we?

  5. miss south April 21, 2011 at 8:25 am ·

    The meat isn’t amazing at Dombey’s, but they do keep a selection of the weirder wobblier cuts behind the counter that you can ask for like shin of beef for stews that no one else seems to do in the market. Plus they are super friendly.

    I also love the Colombian butcher in Brixton Village for their chorizo colombiano sausages. Twice the size the average banger, filled with huge chunks of fresh garlic and superb with lentils.

    I can’t wait to try Breads Etc. I think the lack of bakery is the biggest disappointment about the market!

  6. Stuart Green April 13, 2011 at 4:10 pm ·

    Good article, though I think Mash & Sons is a great, friendly fish shop. It’s well stocked, with signs pointing out the provenance of the fish. They always seem to have sold enough by 4.30 everyday to pack up, which is a good sign. I’ve shopped there for years, decades even.

    There is a new, tiny, Brazilian butcher just next to Franco Manga who, I think, may be setting a new standard for the area judging by the excellent sirloin I bought last weekend.

    • zoeliv April 13, 2011 at 4:15 pm ·

      I love Mash & Sons – though it’s not as cheap as some of the others. Great fish though. Will try out the Brazilian butcher…

  7. Tilly April 8, 2011 at 8:39 pm ·

    Thanks for this, some useful tips. I get a lot of stuff from the first shop on the right down Electric Avenue – great herbs, veg and spices, and the staff are pretty hilarious. I love Wing Tai too – my staple meal has become their frozen dim sum with stir fried pak choi, chilli and soy. Yum.

  8. Kimbabim April 8, 2011 at 8:37 pm ·

    Brilliant! When I went shopping at Brixton market the other day I thought that I really needed a guide to point out the best stalls to me. Perfect timing! Thanks, Rachel and Zoe!

  9. Irina April 8, 2011 at 7:36 pm ·

    Although not strictly Brixton I love the DiLieto bakery, off Brixton Road on South Island place. Extremely friendly, making the most wonderful olive bread, pizzas, sandwiches and having a great selection of Italian meats. They are always happy to recommend stuff, just make sure you get there early enough on Saturdays as the best bread is gone by 11!

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