We might be a little biased, but in our opinion, Nottingham has one of the best food scenes in the UK. We offer everything from Cod Scallops to the UK’s only Taco Bell in the whole city.
However, if you are one of the more “seasoned” foodies, you might be looking for something a little different. That’s where we’ve got you covered with our guide to some of Nottingham’s most hidden gems.
Food lovers have been known to follow their favorite vendors, from pop-up bars to festival venues, by researching their locations in advance on social media. Some of the vendors have created their own range of t-shirts and hats so fans can show their support.
You do not know where to start ? Here’s our guide to Nottingham’s ten hidden gems
Mocky D Vegan Burgers
Unit 9, Robin Hood Industrial Area,
As for Mocky-D, if you know, you know. The vegan food industry has gone from strength to strength, and the van has now parked for good at Liquid Light Brewery.
The taphouse which is off the beaten track on Alfred Street in Sneinton is also a working brewery. Mocky-D offers a full line of vegan kebabs, burgers and their new Sunday Roast option. The food is chosen to complement the beer the brewery makes.
The recent launch party held at the brewery was an absolute success, earning the company many new cooking enthusiasts who lined up to get one of their Big Mocks. The secret really is in the sauce that customers say makes the burger.
Beeston’s Katie Adcock tried a big simulation for the first time. She said: “I was so surprised at how good my Big Mock tasted and it tasted like the real thing, even down to the secret sauce.”
The hip-hop grocery store
Street Food Club, Victoria Center
Hip Hop Food Shop is a hidden gem of Nottingham’s pop-up food scene. The company is billed as the “home of hip-hop beats and killer dishes, street food flavors from around the world, remixed.”
Expect mouth-watering entrees like picanha steak and herb tabbouleh with smoked garlic yogurt and chimichurri sauce or Salt N Pepper soft-shell crab with an aromatic salad dressed in a peanut vinaigrette and with ponzu and our Korean hot sauce. The quirky names are an added bonus for hip hop fans and some of the best have included Wu Taco Clan, Hahal Cool J and wrap battle.
The food store is so popular that they have now produced a line of merchandise including t-shirts and hats. Pop-ups can take place across the city at other street food club locations as well as at the Victoria Centre. The best place to find out what’s going on is on McCrellis and Wilkinson’s Instagram and Facebook.
The worker’s kitchen
Various locations, @workingmanskitchen
The Working Man’s Kitchen is the creation of Paddy Sneath and can be found throughout the city, including the Albie Cafe on Carlton Road. The kitchen offers wings, pizzas and thick fries.
Customers follow the van through Nottingham as it announces its new locations on social media. Forest supporters in particular are said to be big fans of the kitchen’s pizzadogs which combine, you guessed it, pizza and hotdogs. The pizzas are made with fresh mozzarella, chorizo, and for those who like a little spice, jalapenos.
Ethiopian Cuisine Abeyo
Sneinton and Sherwood Market
Abeyo Ethiopian Food is the new comfort food you never knew you needed. The pop-up deli can be found in Sherwood and Sneinton Markets with its selection of lentil dishes, hot coffee and mild injera.
Injera is a sour fermented flatbread with a slightly spongy texture, traditionally made from teff flour which is used to scoop food instead of knives or forks. Abeyo makes particularly tasty injera, so it’s worth experiencing it on your own.
The best way to experience Abeyo food is to ask for a mix of each dish which is sandwiched between two injera. You can also adapt your dish to your tastes with spicy salsa and spices. Don’t forget to add a hot coffee to your order as Ethiopian coffee is renowned for its flavor.
Following the business on its Instagram is the best way to know in advance where the pop-up will be.
Squealing Beaver Poutine
Poutine is street food from Canada that combines all the best food groups – fries, gravy and cheese curds. Cheese curds are somewhat new to the Nottingham food scene, but are often referred to as “squeaky cheese” because of the sound they make when chewed.
Squeaky Beaver poutine is known for its decadent toppings, including mouth-watering 12-hour bourbon, barbecue beef brisket, and spicy Buffalo chicken. It’s the perfect naughty food to go with a beer…or three.
The distinctive bright yellow van appears across town at many events, including summer music festivals in the Arboretum and, most recently, at the Crown Inn in Beeston.
One fan wrote: ‘I would honestly say the best street vendor in Nottingham, the Buble was the best I have ever had last Saturday.’
The Sugarberry Cart is one of the best parts of a weekend evening spent at Sneinton Market or the Street Food Club. Gooey and sticky buns, brownies and cakes are the perfect way to treat yourself after a busy week.
The bakery’s owner, Fran Jesson, originally owned Oozee Boozee Patisseries who created unusual liquor-based cakes in their beautiful Sneinton location. It was rebranded as Sugarberry in 2020 and the line of cakes expanded to its current lineup.
The cart has created special cakes for different events around town, including its popular Starry Night Winter Berry Pies for Light Night in February. Fran’s brownies have also become legends and are also available as a gluten-free option.
Street food club. Victoria Center
Vegans look away – this one is one for meat eaters. Dirty Chicken has become somewhat popular among Nottingham foodies for its decadent stacked burgers and crispy chicken nuggets.
The burgers are not for the faint hearted as they are absolutely huge. They use fresh ingredients, including hot Nottsville honey butter, bacon, and layers of melted cheese. Their chicken wings have a huge range of dipping sauces, from mild to red, depending on your comfort level.
Here goes the diet….
The pillar box
Mansfield Road, Sherwood
It’s less street food and more recently launched pub chow. Sherwood’s Pillar Box has just launched its brand new dim sum menu just in time for summer.
Visitors to the bar have already described the ravioli as ‘delicious’ with options from just £3. There are also options for mixed platters and dinner specials if you’re looking to make it a night out. Specialties include kimchi gyoza which includes Korean kimchi or duck with fresh vegetables, hoisin and spices.
If that’s not enough, the bar has an extensive collection of gins and the staff are happy to recommend the perfect glass if you’re a little overwhelmed. Be warned, once you start experimenting with the different options, it’s very hard to stop.
Secret Pizza Kitchen
King Billy’s Secret Pizza kitchen has become one of the people to watch during the lockdown. One of Nottingham’s best-loved pubs operates a small pizza kitchen from a window in their smoking area at the weekends now that it’s open, but during the restrictions it was pre-order and delivery only.
The pizza stays local using flour from nearby Snienton Windmill and features some of the more unusual ingredients including summer oyster mushrooms from Nottingham Vertical Farm with wild garlic pesto or Salami Milano with black olive tapenade, mozzarella, parmesan and fresh purple basil. on a base of San Marzano tomatoes.
Fans of the pizza took to Facebook every week as the pub posted the menu before taking orders for delivery of food and its beers. But beware, they sell out and they can go fast. Although the pub sells crisps, they don’t end up in the same place as a handmade pizza.
If you crave a good simmered homemade curry, then Dosa Love is for you. The company has been making their beautiful artisanal street food since 2018 covering many festivals in Nottingham and the surrounding area.
They specialize in traditional dosas which is a thin dough dish originating from South India, made from a fermented batter made from lentils and rice. The dosa is served with simmered curries and dals as well as fresh chutneys and chilli sauces.
All dishes are gluten-free, dairy-free. dairy free, egg free so it’s the perfect place to go if you have dietary requirements. The signature dish includes freshly cooked Dosa, Sambar curry, turmeric dal, fragrant rice, pickles, ferments and chutneys.