With the diktat that we should only eat outside, food markets are back on the menu. Another positive is that this encourages a grazing experience. Which is nothing to moan about as it lets me sample a collection of delights. However, the only problem is when everyone and their dog thinks so too.
This is before midday at Spitalfields Market, so outside the expected lunchtime crush. It was to become something much more lively later.
A hopeful customer. I did wonder who came up with the name rice brother. I didn’t know that rice had siblings. Within this genus was there wheat uncle, quoina granny and gruel son? Or were those different families, orders, classes or phylums?
BBQ pork and soya chicken. Luscious pork and succulent chicken. A delight. The char siu (BBQ pork) had deep flavour and excellent texture (not too fat or too lean). The soya chicken was tender, moist and soft yet not falling apart. With the rice and the sauce, this was a real treat and as I tucked in a firework of umami, sweet and savoury exploded in my mouth. With such an addictive combination of flavours, I quickly hit the bottom to exhale in contented happiness. However, in my greed, even at the bottom, I scratched around for the last grains of rice and sauce to extend the pleasure.
I guess this goes to show that even if some of the Chinese food in London has gone downhill, that just pushes me outside my comfort zone to try places that I might otherwise never have come across. So although the sad slip into mediocrity of other Chinese restaurants depresses me, if the new challenger shops are all like this, I will soon be a larger man.
A quiet eating 8.5/10.
Lunch (one box) was GBP 9.50 excluding drinks and service.
Old Spitafields Market
London E1 6EA