Oistins Fish Fry – Barbados

On Friday evenings, there is only one place to be when you are in Barbados – Oistins!

Just south of Bridgetown, Oistins is a fishermen’s village which turns into the most lively spot on the island at the weekend. Food, music, dancing, head to Oistins Fish Fry and you are in for a great night!

Oistins Fish Fry Barbados

Getting there is an adventure too! Head to the closest bus stop to your hotel and wait for one of the small vans to stop. You read that right, you won’t actually take the official public transport, nope! You will board the first private van honking at you with the driver yelling ‘Oistins????’. I know it seems weird but just embrace it. A lot of locals provide public transport with their own vans. It is how most of the Bajans travel between towns and it is very cheap!

Once in Oistins, just follow the people and the music and you will find your way to the big food market.

Oistins Fish Fry BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

There, get lost in the alleyways to find your preferred dinner option. Most food stalls offer very similar menus made of various fish, plantains (my favourite!), rice and beans. It is simple and delicious!

Oistins Fish Fry BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

Grab a sit, order food and a fresh beer and enjoy people watching while eating flavoursome Bajan food.

Oistins Fish Fry barbecue BarbadosOistins Fish Fry food Barbados

When done with your dinner, go explore the market beer in hand. In Oistins, you will find many places to buy souvenirs.

Oistins shops BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

Also, make sure to swing by the domino and card players. In a corner of the market, you will find many locals playing games. The atmosphere is very lively as some players can get a little too competitive, but everyone is in good spirit.

Oistins dominos BarbadosOistins dominos BarbadosOistins card players Barbados

End your evening by the stage where you will see some of the best local dancers. They all had impressive moves so Andrew and I got a little too intimidated to join and sat at a table close by with a rum punch.

Oistins dancers BarbadosOistins Fish Fry Barbados

The blissful and joyful Barbados life at its best!

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Mercato Metropolitano – London

One of my favourite food markets in London is Mercato Metropolitano, and this is a big statement knowing how many street food places there are in London!

Mercato Metropolitano entrance London

Mercato Metropolitano is hidden in an old warehouse of Elephant & Castle and just a stone’s throw away from the famous Ministry of Sound. From the outside, it may look deceivingly small, but don’t get fooled by the narrow entrance. Once inside you will be surprised by the scale of this place!

Mercato Metropolitano entrance London

There are three main areas in Mercato Metropolitano, the warehouse where most of the food stalls are. Prezzemolo & Vitale, the Italian deli, a big store full of delicious fresh products which you can either take home or consume on site (including the wine!). And there is the outdoor garden area, a great place to hang out in the summer evenings with a glass (or jug!) of Pimms.

Mercato Metropolitano LondonMercato Metropolitano Italian deliMercato Metropolitano London outdoor area

My routine is as follow when I go there. And yes, I do have a routine because I am massively a regular- I just love this place so much!

Mercato Metropolitano London

First stop is the Italian Deli where we will buy a bottle of wine to enjoy in the market. The staff is amazing and will happily make you taste different options before you buy a bottle. I even converted one of my friends to red wine in this shop!

Mercato Metropolitano Italian deli

The second step is to browse all the different food options before selecting your lunch or dinner. I highly recommend the meat platter from the Argentine Grill, the pulled pork burger at Prairie Fire BBQ, the charcuterie and cheese plate from Champagne & Fromage and the gelatos at Gelateria Badiani.

Mercato Metropolitano gelatoMercato Metropolitano London BBQMercato Metropolitano pulled pork burger

Finally, grab a table inside during the winter or on a rainy day (Mercato Metropolitano is opened all year round!) or outside on warmer and sunnier days.

Mercato Metropolitano foodMercato Metropolitano London outdoor area

End your visit by checking out all the cool street art going on in the venue and grabbing some Italian treats at the deli to take home. Get some houseplants at RootLabs or go watch a movie at the Backyard Cinema.

Mercato Metropolitano London street artMercato Metropolitano RootLabs bus

So make sure to pay a visit to Mercato Metropolitano, and if you have visitors in town bring them with you! They will be blown away by the place and they will find something they like no matter what!

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Flat Iron Square – London

It doesn’t happen often but sometimes looking for free wifi and clean toilets can lead to great things. It was the case for me recently while looking for a decent spot to work from, around London Bridge, before a dinner with my friends at Padella.

The Shard London

I was walking down the streets hoping to find a warm place with good coffee which was not a chain. I eventually saw a warehouse-like door opened with people coming and going and some music playing. I had time to lose so I thought I would check it out. One of the best decision I have made within the past 10 days (my life is not that exciting). This is how I discovered Flat Iron Square.

Flat Iron Square

Nested under some of the London Bridge train tracks, Flat Iron Square is an indoor/outdoor food market. It opened in 2016 so it is still fairly new and not too crowded. Part of me considered not sharing this address with you so it would remain fairly low key, but sharing is caring and I couldn’t let you miss out on this place!

Flat Iron Square

Flat Iron Square is part of London’s Low Line project aiming to open South London railway arches to local businesses.

Flat Iron Square

The first time I visited I took a sit indoor and grabbed a coffee and one delicious cinnamon roll at Burnt Lemon Bakery. Their sandwiches also looked amazing and I would definitely go back there for some flavoursome bread and tasty pastries!

Flat Iron Square

I actually liked Flat Iron Square so much that I went back with my friends Hemma and Camille for a drink (alcohol is on the pricey side there) and Andrew for a Sunday lunch.

Lupins in Flat Iron Square

The day we went with Andrew was absolutely freezing so we both opted for a warming ramen from Tatami Ramen. The ramen was decent, not as good as the ones served in Japan, but it did the job of keeping us warm and full.

Ramen in Flat Iron SquareEating ramen at Flat Iron Square

Be warned Flat Iron Square, I will be back! My plan is to try all the eateries under the arches, and by the time I am done maybe London will be warmer and maybe we will be able to sit outside.

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The best food markets in Lisbon

Lisbon is such a vibrant city. It has a lot of shops and restaurants. People are very friendly and open-minded. It definitely has a very trendy and cosmopolitan vibe.

The food scene is also incredible, and, with the very good weather, the city is able to offer very various experiences to visitors, some indoor and some outdoor. Today, I am taking you to two places that are a mixture of both – covered food markets.

I will be talking about a very famous market which is in all the guides, and a lot less famous one where locals go to eat. So, ready for some food adventures? Let’s go!

Time Out Market

Time Out Market Lisbon

Time Out Market needs no introductions if you have been to Lisbon or even just read about Lisbon. The giant food market is just next to Cais dos Sodré metro station and a short walk away from Baixa neighbourhood. Inside you will find dozens of food stalls. This place is absolutely huge, I have never seen such a big food market even in London!

Time Out Market Lisbon

I also love the Time Out Market concept. The food vendors have been curated based on Time Out ratings and reviews. One of the chefs even owns a Michelin star restaurant!

Sardine bruschetta Time Out Market Lisbon

The ultimate destination for the foodies. Spy at other people’s plates, walk along the shops to see what’s on offer and enjoy a very tasty meal at a very soft price!

We opted for some octopus (you know me, I never say no to it!) and some risotto.

Octopus Time Out Market LisbonRisotto Time Out Market Lisbon

And for dessert? Make sure to have a pastel de nata at Manteigaria, of course!

Pasteis de nata Manteigaria Time Out Market Lisbon

Mercado de Campo de Ourique

If you want to get away from the touristy crowd of Time Out Market, head to Campo de Ourique, a neighbourhood north west of the city centre. It is only 15 minutes on the bus from Baixa. There you will find the eponymous Mercado de Campo de Ourique. This is where the locals (and a very few tourists) go!

Mercado de Campo de OuriqueMercado de Campo de Ourique

The venue is similar to Time Out Market except much smaller. There are a lot of food stalls with a sitting area in the middle.

Mercado de Campo de Ourique

Again, walk around the place and pick something you fancy! You will find everything from local charcuterie boards to sushi.

Mercado de Campo de Ourique

Grab a refreshing bottle of rosé and enjoy a tasty meal while people watching.

Mercado de Campo de Ourique

Two very different food market, two very tasty experiences!

Mercado de Campo de Ourique

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Nishiki Market – Kyoto

Kyoto is amazing, that’s a given. It is full of history, world-famous sights, shops, and it is a foodie’s heaven. If you like to eat, and you are not afraid to try new things, the first place you have to head to once in Kyoto is Nishiki Market.

Nishiki Market Kyoto

You will find the market in the centre of Kyoto a few back streets away from Daimaru. The market is covered which is fortunate as it was raining when we got there.

Nishiki Market Kyoto

Walk along the gallery and get overwhelmed by choice and smells.

Note that you can shop for anything related to food there. Ingredients, serveware, the world renowned Japanese knives – the perfect destination to shop for some Japanese souvenirs!

Nishiki Market shop Kyoto

Our strategy, after seeing how big the market was, was to walk the full length of it to see what all the options were, then walk back the whole way and start ordering some food. Doing so you won’t miss a thing AND you will walk off the calories – win!

Nishiki Market shop Kyoto

Nishiki market is a very busy place and the main challenge is to reach the counters and then find a little corner to nibble, most of the time standing.

Nishiki Market Kyoto

What is also fascinating about the market is that it has been around for several centuries, and a lot of the shops have been owned by the same families for generations. You literally cannot do more authentic than that, even if you were trying!

Nishiki Market shop Kyoto

On the hunt for our lunch, we knew we very much wanted some seafood. Some were a little too weird or almost too alive for our liking.

Octopus Nishiki Market Kyoto

Eventually, we settled for some Takoyaki, also known as octopus balls or doughnuts.

Takoyaki Nishiki Market Kyoto

Looking at the guy cooking them is entertaining in itself! I mean, how fast can one human being move?

Takoyaki Nishiki Market Kyoto

We also went for some ‘not too sure what it is but it’s delicious’ corn dog like seafood stick.

Corn dog Nishiki Market Kyoto

We grabbed a few more things, some crab legs, pickled vegetables, and others, but we got too hungry and I stopped taking pictures. Ooops!

Nishiki Market shop Kyoto

So if you are a foodie like us, Nishiki will be right up your street! Be curious, try new things, and come home with some packs of dry mushrooms and kimchi.

Nishiki Market mushrooms

Planning a trip to Nishiki Market? Take me there! And make sure to check out my guides to TokyoKyoto, OsakaHakone and Hiroshima!

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