The Foodie Issue
Fabulous Food Markets
Split into 12 different zones, Or Tor Kor Food Market in Bangkok brims with regional specialities from all over Thailand. There are stalls brimming with mangosteen and rambutan, river prawn, king crab, and vats of pungent nam-prik (fiery fish-based sauces).
The food court is revered among Bangkok chefs, as the source of the city’s best street food. We know where to find the spiciest papaya salad, juiciest pork satay sticks, and most satisfying massaman chicken curry.
Of the 300 food markets in Mexico City, our favourite is the 150-year-old Mercado la Merced. In the bewildering maze of narrow passageways, you’ll find whole sections dedicated to chicharron (deep fried pork skin), nopal (cactus), sticky, technicolour towers of candied fruit, and tubs of goopy mole paste.
Up front are the street food stands,hawking everything from tamales to tortas to tacos, and some less familiar dishes too — you really need an insider to help you navigate this weird and wonderful world.
Tokyo’s Tsukiji Fish Market is the oldest and biggest fish market in the world. Some 500 different kinds of sea creatures are on sale in the central wholesale section, where the famous tuna auction take places every morning at 5am.
Over 2000 tonnes of seafood are sold daily in this hectic marketplace. All around the perimeter, simple food stalls offer super-fresh sushi, soothing ramen, sweet and fluffy tamagoyaki, and feather-light shrimp tempura, which all taste surprisingly good at the crack of dawn.
Japan’s iconic fish market is due to relocate in October 2018, so go now.
London's oldest food market, Borough Market has been around for some 1,000 years. Some of the area’s cosy pubs feel almost as old. All around the covered wholesale market, a new wave of food emporia, bakeries and wine bars have cropped up.
From Padella’s sublime fresh pasta to El Pastor taqueria, the diversity of offer reflects the cosmopolitan character of London. Discover British cheeses at Neal’s Yard, slurp oysters and stout at Wright Brothers, stock up on jamon iberico at Brindisa, or nit’irkibe (aromatic, clarified butter) at Ethiopian Flavours. Don’t miss Justin Gellatly’s “pillows of joy” – doughnuts stuffed with caramel custard and honeycomb at Bread Ahead.