Books for Cooks

By jessfagin
4 Blenheim Crescent, W11 1NN
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Tue-Sat 10am-6pm

Books for Cooks is filled with over 4000 books on every angle and intersection of food. From Elizabeth David classics to small print runs on Guyanese cookery, the collection rivals Google in its scope. Set up in 1983, it’s an institution where chefs and gastronomes peel through hard to find editions and grandiose Michelin star chef tomes. Beyond the bookshelves, the back of the shop is an open kitchen where lunch is cooked from the books for a crowd of feverishly loyal regulars. The fervour is no surprise – a three-course lunch is £7 that could include Jane Grigson’s curried parsnip soup and St Johns’ beef shin macaroni, followed by massive wedges of perfect cakes. Get there at noon if you want to eat, the regulars don’t mess. /Jess Fagin