If the massive 45-minute (minimum) queue outside Five Guys on its opening night is anything to go by, London still digs burgers. Between the buns, another trend is emerging to complement our ever growing love of the lard: Southern Style Food.
As this addictive Stateside cuisine is set to come into its own, here are our top picks to get comforting creole fuel, along with some cracking cocktails.
Food vendors Anna Mae’s have been serving up London twisted Southern street food for a while now – with their headlining mac and cheese, often with intriguing variations such the Don Macaroni (pesto, bacon, basil), going down a storm at festivals, private parties and events all over the capital. Catch them with the Kerb collective where you can also get hold of their pulled pork creations and hot dogs.
Various locations around town, including Zoo Lates and KERB.
Double dipped fat daddy chips and warming whiskey are just the tip of the ice block here, as deep fried baby squid, delicious full racks of bourbon ribs (with warmed barbecue sauce… hmmmm) are also on offer. A taste of the South in Shoreditch with a heavy British accent, with Yorkshireman Dan Thrippleton (former Hix Soho) throwing proper roast dinners into the mix.
77 Curtain Road, EC2A
Much feted Soho restaurant, which boasts both an award-winning head chef and a Bourbon expert, houses some of the best ribs in London. It’s also the only place to get your grubby little mitts on a Jowl Scrumpet – a deep fried panko-crumbed, fish finger-shaped Pigs Jowl. If you want to take the morish recipes home, you can now get the book, which promises to divulge the secrets of their ribs, pork, bone marrow mash and all their cocktails.
1 Newburgh Street, W1F
Further out east is Dalston’s answer to the Pitt Cue Co guys, and they mean business. In house brewing and smoking equipment imported from Oklahoma means the beer and sticky ribs are not to be missed. The cocktails are spot on, and the menu is short and sweet, but if you simply can’t choose (hey, you’re only human) go for the Duke’s Greatest Hits Platter (£23.50) loaded with ribs, pork, ‘slaw and Texas garlic toast — you won’t be disappointed.
33 Downham Road, N1
Newly revamped eatery – formerly Navajo Joe’s — Joe’s have gone all out with their new menu. Cynical Londoners should not be put off by the tourist-friendly location. Gumbo, gargantuan tender ribs, moist chicken, and do you want a bottle of honey to drizzle over those dirty deep fried chicken wings? Oh yeeeeah. Yeah you do. Dessert indulgers should make a beeline for the home-made pecan pie.
34 King Street, WC2E
Pop up chicken-touting connoisseurs and pun lovers Mother Clucker have a reputation for dishing up some of the most mouth-watering poultry in the city – free range, marinated in a sweet tea brine and double fried with buttermilk and spices. With New Orleans native Brittney Bean behind the fryer, you can’t get any more authentic than this.
Currently at the Shacklewell Arms, 71 Shacklewell Lane, E8
This multi-award winning, family friendly BBQ joint situated in Chelsea has been serving up steak and shrimp patrons for over 20 years. Based on the crabshacks that line the Louisiana coast, you can opt for whole, fresh Maine lobster or pig out at one of their all-you-can eat specials that run Monday-Wednesday, including ribs, fajitas and deep fried prawns.
332-334 King’s Road, SW3
Images provided by the respective restaurants. Text written independently.
This article is part of our Best of London Food and Drink series. Visit the page for more recommendations of where to enjoy the capital’s top food and drink, categorised by cuisine, food type and more.