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Michael’s Fruiterers

Michael’s is without doubt the best shopping find of this year. It’s one of those places that makes you wonder why people bother with the big chains. And please  don’t give us “it’s convenient because it’s all under one roof” bullshit. Supermarkets are unpleasant fluorescent places with hard fruit, reduced ham and too many crisps.

Around April this year someone told me about Michael’s at the Holloway Road end of Seven Sisters Road. She said the head chef of Moro shops there. Which was enough to get me down there. Now, 6 months later I’m a weekly visitor getting my Jamie Oliver ‘appy days feeling when I chat to the guys in the shop about what’s good at the moment.

Everything is wonderful and fresh. They know where their seasonal fruit comes in from. Citrus from Spain, Cypriot aubergine and plenty of British fare, the spinach still has mud on it – none of this ‘washed and ready to eat’ nonsense – this is real food straight from the farm. It’s great value too. Generally speaking a weeks worth of fruit and veg for two comes in around £12. We’re talking 4 x Corn on the cobs for £1.20, beautiful ripe flat peaches 4 for a £1, lemons at 20p each. Surely you get where I’m going with this.

BUT. It doesn’t stop at fruit. There’s about a 2 x 1 metre table of olives. Every olive and marinade, and don’t be shy – taste them. And taste the olive oil in the huge tin. Bring your own bottle to fill. You can get other daily essentials, bread, eggs, pasta, flour and not to forget a bottle of Nero D’avola from Sicily for £2.99.

The supermarket is redundant. Dalton Phillips told us this morning on the BBC that he’s seeing “more professional shoppers” in stores. Well, the professional shoppers are not in your stores Dalton, they are at Michael’s or their local fruiterers.

Have you got a great local store we should check out? Email us food@theothersidemag.co.uk

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