Lipsmacking: London's top gourmet food shops

An easy to digest list of London's finest grub shops.

"Foodie" is cited more and more often these days on people's CVs as a hobby. Just when did "food" turn into a hobby?

Well if you think about it, food is actually a fantastic hobby and one in which we get to indulge 3 times a day. (More if you're Rick Waller.)

And of all the fans of food "gourmands" are at the top of the foodie tree. They demand more of their food - they want passion, they want heritage... and they want it presented in something rustic-looking which will bio-degrade by the time they get it home.

So if you demand the very best food from your producers take a look at our list of London's finest gourmet food shops.

Leila's Shop
17 Calvert Avenue Shoreditch E2 7JN
Region: Shoreditch
Nearest Station: Bethnal Green (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: A hidden gem, Leila’s Shop is situated on Shoreditch’s Calvert Avenue. Selling gourmet food stuffs, Polish delicacies and groceries, it is filled with rustic charm. The coffee is raved about and breakfast here is an excellent way to start the day.

A Gold
42 Brushfield Street Spitalfields E1 6AG
Region: Spitalfields
Nearest Station: Liverpool Street (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: If rumours are to be believed, the scotch eggs at A. Gold are so good that people queue for them daily. Judging by the produce on offer in the Spitalfields deli that isn’t hard to believe. Selling classic British tuck – sugared mice etc – along with fresh sandwiches, coffee and gourmet tinned goods, A. Gold has become a lunchtime phenomenon.

  • USERS 9/10
La Fromagerie
4 Moxon Street Marylebone W1U 4EW
Region: Marylebone
Nearest Station: Baker Street (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: La Fromagerie have two London locations. One is in Highbury and the other in Marylebone. Each combines a chilled cheese room with a café/shop that sells fresh coffee beans, pastries, wine, chutney and jams. Each miniature emporiums of gourmet food and drink.

Neal's Yard Dairy
17 Shorts Gardens Covent Garden WC2H 9AT
Region: Covent Garden
Nearest Station: Covent Garden (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: The smell of cheese wafts through Covent Garden thanks to Neal’s Yard Dairy. Hard, soft, blue, wrapped in nettles, it’s all available here. The queues get big during the festive period but it is without doubt one of London’s best options for cheese.

59 Ledbury Road Notting Hill W11 2AA
Region: Notting Hill
Nearest Station: Notting Hill Gate (0.3 miles)

AIL Says: You can’t beat a lovely bar of Dairy Milk, except you can, because at Melt the master chocolatiers make fine handmade chocolate to eclipse those newsagent sweets. Think sea salt and caramel bonbons, REAL chocolate oranges, truffles and chocolate themed gifts in the Notting Hill store.

E5 Bakehouse
395 Mentmore Terrace Dalston E8 3PH
Region: Dalston
Nearest Station: London Fields

AIL Says: Bread is big business. Most of us eat it every single day and think little of it. The E5 Bakehouse is here to change that. Gluten free, sourdough, rye and olive read as a small sample list of what the East London bakery is producing. You haven’t had fresh bread unless you’ve eaten here.

Paxton & Whitfield
93 Jermyn Street St. James's SW1Y 6JE
Region: St. James's
Nearest Station: Piccadilly Circus (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: Paxton and Whitfield is a cheese shop with finer credentials than most. Once beloved by Winston Churchill it was also the cheese supplier to Queen Victoria herself. Now the Jermyn Street shop must satisfy itself with selling exquisite cheeses from all over Europe.

Ginger Pig
99 Lauriston Road Homerton E9 7HJ
Region: Homerton
Nearest Station: London Fields (0.6 miles)

AIL Says: As butchers go, The Ginger Pig is at the top of the London pile. You’ll find aged beef, succulent pork belly and fresh, free-range chicken in behind the meat counter. In the deli below, the huge sausage rolls, juices and vegetables on offer are a good addition.

  • USERS 8/10
L'eau A La Bouche
35-37 Broadway Market E8 4PH

Nearest Station: Cambridge Heath (0.3 miles)

AIL Says: Broadway Market’s La Bouche doubles up as both café and deli. Stocking a great range of European cheeses, cured meats, bread and specialty groceries it is as much a gourmet food shop as it is a meeting place for the market’s foodies. Always smells great.

  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
Lina Stores
18 Brewer Street Soho W1F 0SH
Region: Soho
Nearest Station: Piccadilly Circus (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: Lina Stores has existed in its current guise on Brewer Street for over fifty years. A family-run deli, the shop stocks high quality meat, cheese and groceries. Every inch the local Italian food shop, it makes delicious fresh pasta daily.


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