Foodies can taste their way around the world in the heart of the capital’s theatreland this weekend (14 July) as St Martin’s Courtyard hosts a global food festival with a street-party feel.
Tucked away between Leicester Square and Covent Garden, St Martin’s Courtyard is an elegant central London enclave lined with smart boutiques and shops that lead to a courtyard of six bustling restaurants.
Quickly becoming a dining destination in its own right, the variety of restaurants offer a choice of Italian, Thai, Mexican, Indian and British cuisine.
On Saturday, from 12-5pm, they will host tastings, cooking demonstrations and a celebration of food and culture as St Martin’s Courtyard is transformed into a vibrant open air street food market.
This is the address Jamie Oliver selected for the flagship branch of his Italian-themed chain, Jamie’s Italian, already known for its rustic Italian dishes in his signature, laid back surroundings.
On Saturday, visitors can sample Jamie’s festival hog roast and homemade Italian lemonade, served up beside the restaurant’s al fresco terrace.
Next door, Bill’s is both a café and an impressive chef’s larder, incorporating a grocery store, organic fruit and veg, herbs, groceries and hampers. English cream teas will be on offer here, along with strawberries and lashings of cream. A take home range of exquisite jams, marmalades and chutneys will also be for sale.
Bringing a Mexican fiesta to the courtyard, Cantina Laredo – which prides itself on serving authentic gourmet Mexican cuisine and the capital’s finest selection of sipping tequilas – will be setting up a pop-up bar offering some complimentary ‘Lime Paloma’ tequila cocktails. Learn how to make delicious guacamole from the experts and sample Cantina Laredo’s hot and spicy salsas and sizzling Mexican brownies.
If you love Thai street food, head for Suda, where Thai dancers and puppeteers will be entertaining the crowds alongside a tempting stall selling Pandan wraps, Thai fishcakes and papaya salad.
Indian restaurant Dishoom will bring the flavours of India to the courtyard, serving Bombay’s answer to the chip butty.
And to wash it all down, wine lovers can drop in to enoteca Dalla Terra (right) for Italian wine tasting. Mini master classes will include a tasting of three wines, fine Italian cheeses and cold meats for £10.
An hour-long tasting seminar will be hosted inside at 3.30pm by one of Dalla Terra’s wine experts, introducing a selection of red and white wines, cheeses and cold meats.
St Martin's Courtyard Global Food Festival: Saturday July 14, 12-5pm
St Martin’s Courtyard, Slingsby Place, Covent Garden, WC2E 9AB. Visit stmartinscourtyard.co.uk for more details.