Pub in Borough Market
The Market Porter restaurant / pub in Borough Market, part of the Market Taverns, is one hidden gem. The dining room is a lovely quiet hideaway, nestled above the busy pub downstairs, with views over bustling Borough Market. It’s quaint, radiating an old-fashioned pub vibe inside, yet it’s pretty cosy. We visited one Saturday at prime time, and it was still very quiet. The staff were friendly from the off, offering help and ensuring we hadn’t forgotten to check out the specials.
Being a pub too, The Market Porter offers twelve traditional, award-winning ales as well as a selection of wines, soft drinks and a handful of cocktails. The classic Aperol Spritz was perfectly prepared, as we clutched onto the end of the warm autumn weather. The Twinkle however stole the show – a mix of Champagne, vodka and elderflower, it was lightly sparkling and beautifully refreshing. If you’re not an ale lover, and are a little impartial to a fizz, I’d definitely recommend a Twinkle.
The seasonal menu features roughly six starters, plus there were a couple on the specials board when we visited – don’t forget to check that board! They weren’t the usual’s you would find on a gastro pub menu and included a thai beef salad and arancini.
We tried the Hot Smoked Salmon Scotch Egg (£9), which was fantastic. The smoked salmon full of flavour, tender and flaky, had a beautiful light bread coating, and soft boiled egg inside. The horseradish and curried fennel mayo which accompanied the scotch egg, was creamy and rich in flavour, complimenting it well. This one was quite a big starter. The Toasted Sourdough topped with Creamed Mushrooms and Onion Crust (£8) did not disappoint either. The mushrooms were rich in that signature umami flavour, weren’t overly creamy, and there were plenty of them.
The eight mains on the menu when we visited, gave off more of that gastro pub feel, with Beer Battered Haddock, a Rib Eye Steak, Market Porter Pie and a Chicken Kiev making an appearance. The special board on our visit featured another beef number and The Market Fish Special – Seabass with Sweet Carrot Puree, which we could not resist.
The Seabass (£15) was delicate, with a fab crispy skin. It had a superb flavour. The Sweet Carrot Puree was a great way to serve carrots. It was indeed sweet, very smooth and complimented the Seabass very well. It’s quite a light meal, so sides are a must if you are hungry. The Chips (£3.75) were neither thin and crispy nor thick and chunky. They were crisp yet fluffy, and perfect for picking/sharing. The Daily Veg (£3.75) was a portion of Tenderstem broccoli when we visited, and it was served delightfully a la dente.
We also tried the Kale & Pumpkin Risotto with Chestnut Sage and Parmesan (£12.50). It was a delicious creamy, soft, autumnal dish. The chestnut pieces were plentiful, and the long strips of parmesan delicately placed on top added a rich, melty, cheesiness. I loved it! This might be the only veggie option, but it’s a fantastic one!
The Sticky Toffee Pudding (£6) with Butterscotch Sauce and Vanilla Ice Cream, obviously caught our attention being lovers of a good one. Unfortunately it didn’t quite live up to others as it was a little dry and not overly sticky. However, the butterscotch sauce was fantastic and the vanilla ice cream beautifully potent in flavour and super creamy. It was still a nice end to the meal.
The Market Porter pub in Borough Market is a fab hidden quiet spot overlooking the market. It is a great restaurant to escape the hustle and bustle to, with some great food, reasonably priced drinks and a relaxed, cosy and friendly atmosphere.
East London Girl: The Market Porter
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