Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Boro in the Borough – Black and Blue, Borough Market

Farmers Markets have become very fashionable in London over the last few years. Every middle class suburb worth its salt proudly has a market of its own, where on a either a weekly or monthly basis you can buy all sorts of farm reared items from ducks eggs to fine cheeses, with of course a large selection of meat, game and poultry. Much like a supermarket but outdoors, with less choice and more expensive. The only thing you will not see at any of these markets are farmers, which pretty much tells you all that you need to know about life in London. Not so Borough Market though, the original and probably best ‘farmers’ market in London town, which in recent years has been transformed into both a tourist and social destination.
The Three Amigos had descended on London for the Bank Holiday intent on a weekend of drinking, talking and errr… drinking and talking. Fresh out of Manchester but made in Middlesbrough the Amigos come complete with stories for every occasion and a seemingly endless appetite for bars, pubs, restaurants and music. The perfect weekend companions. Despite struggling with hangovers and sleep deprivation, Saturday night saw the Amigos, the Northerner, the Vice Consul and yours truly head to Borough Market for a night of metaphorical carnage at Black and Blue.
Black and Blue specialises in steak, steak and more steak. Okay you can get fish there, and they do nod their farmers’ hats to vegetarians with a couple of salads. But this place is about top quality meat and plenty of it. Its got a great bar area, and as you don’t have to book is always busy and buzzing with its mix of locals, returning customers and stray tourists who didn’t book a table at Roast. After a sharperner at the wonderful Market Porter pub, we settled into a steady supply of drinks and food as the Amigos regaled us with tales of failed burglaries (not by them might I hasten to add) and the like while working our way through a half dozen bottles of wine or more. Splendid food, cracking atmosphere and the never-ending stream of anecdotes made for a great night. So good in fact that when we went for the obligatory post dinner drink / nightcap we were not allowed into a pub because the six foot 7 bouncer said we were in possession of contraband. Not drugs or weapons of course but vacuum-sealed sausages courtesy of the Vice Consul. Chorizo and the like. I blame the Amigos.

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