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Real Foods Market Review

Evelien de Vogel finds real food at Southbank

Written by . Published on June 4th 2011.


Real Foods Market Review

THE current western metropolitan mindset is a melting pot of renewed ’60s hippie culture, New Age thinking and today’s love for anything hip and happening. Organic, fresh, pure, artisan and biodynamic are only a few words that have seeped into the daily vocabulary of the self-conscious city dweller. The foundations of this reborn ‘peace and love culture’ have carried into the UK from an über-democratic America and revived this world-loving attitude.

It appears that founder Philip Lowery lives to the popular proverb ‘food serves to enjoy’, combining fresh food shopping with the chance to take a break, nibble on a delicious whatever you’d like and enjoy real music. This is what truly separates Real Food Markets from their competitors.

Eating well, or in other words, eating organic, has been high on the Londoner’s priority list for many years. Think about popular lunch stops like Pret a Manger, Itsu and Eat, who all use organic ingredients and have been a common sight on London’s high streets for years. Yet until recently, London hosted only one weekly market offering fresh, high-quality products, namely the Borough Market in Southwark.

However, Borough Market may soon be surpassed in popularity by its competitor, the monthly Real Food Markets at the Southbank Centre. The Markets have been upgraded to a three-day, weekly event, ensuring environmentally-minded Londoners are able to squueze some good food shopping into their hectic urban lives.

Here visitors can choose from a wide selection of products ranging from locally grown fruits, vegetables, milk and meat, to culinary delights from Basque Country, Italy or Poland. Besides their grand selection of the best small producers around, the Real Food Markets also offer a taste of Britian’s up-and-coming street food vendors including Jamon Jamon Paella and Healthy Yummies.

At the heart of the market visitors will find a stage where on weekends the city’s most exciting new artists will perform. It appears that founder Philip Lowery lives to the popular proverb ‘food serves to enjoy’, combining fresh food shopping with the chance to take a break, nibble on a delicious whatever you’d like and enjoy real music. This is what truly separates Real Food Markets from their competitors.

In addition to the weekly fresh veg fix, there is a yearly Real Food Festival in Earls Court (May). The festival tries to tackle food-related issues because although organic producing is gaining popularity rapidly, industrialised food manufacture remains the norm. The Festival offers the best small producers the chance to expand their customer base and support them by paying their costs.

For the enthusiastic do-it-yourselfers, and any visitor inspired by the divinity that fresh products possess, the Real Food Markets have produced a beautifully illustrated cookbook. The Real Food Cookbook  (Duncan Baird Publishers, £20) boasts over a hundred recipes from big names like Valentina Harris and Raymond Blanc, as well as from popular markets chefs.

Real Food Markets

Royal Festival Hall

Southbank Centre

Belvedere Road

London, SE1 8XX

T: 020 7370 8627

Fri – Sat: 11am – 8pm, Sun: noon – 6pm

 

www.RealFoodFestival.co.uk/Markets

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