Exploring Brixton Market

Goodness me I got a shock wandering around Brixton Market on Saturday. I hadn't  ventured there since I was a child when my parents used to go visit their friends who lived just off Acre Lane, so we'd always go and have a wander. In my twenties I spent a lot of evenings clubbing in Brixton and eating at the fantastic Satay Gallery and Fujiyama, but the market was never the big draw for me.

I remember it being quite a dive but after years of redevelopment, giving local businesses a chance to take over closed units, it has retained it's colourful background as well as gaining a number of trendy eateries, sweet gift shops and very expensive Vintage shops. For me it is almost recognisable, in a good way! The vast array of old Fish mongers, butchers and fruit and veg stalls have all remained alongside the African food shops that sell all manner of interesting products. It is now a fabulous meeting point for friends, shoppers and families wishing to while away an afternoon. South Londoners you are very lucky to have this on your doorstep.

We hadn't really done much research on where to eat and having left it too late to avoid long queues at the celebrated Franca Manca or Honest Burgers we retreated to a Columbian place. A number of the tables were occupied by Columbians so we thought we'd be ok. The fresh smoothies were delicious and at £2.50 each a bargain, I had the chicken with a cheese and prawn sauce which was naughtily nice, though sadly it was let down by the cold chips and rice.

Next time we'll try the Japanese street food cafe, Okan, which was jam packed with very enticing food displayed on those lucky people's plates. The trick to getting into the popular eateries is, by all accounts, to get there about 11.45 just before they open. So now we know, next time we'll be taking heed of this advice. Parking is super expensive in the area (£3 pr hour) but a short walk up Acre Lane towards Clapham and parking restrictions are only applicable Monday-Friday, so definitely worth the 10 minute walk back to Electric Avenue.

Exploring the narrow alleyways that make up Brixton Village, whilst listening to the African beats and soaking up the sensational colours, is a perfect way to spend a Saturday afternoon.