Books for Cooks runs on a simple but very successful formula. From the small open kitchen, co-owner Eric Treuillé puts recipes from the cookbook(s) of the day to the test. There’s no choice – until it comes to pudding, when there’s an array of must-try cakes (lemon victoria sponge, raspberry and pear cake, or chocolate and orange cake, say) – but the standard of cooking is high. So popular is the good value lunch in the tiny café at the back of this specialist cookbook shop that regulars start lurking from 11.45am to secure a table (no bookings are taken). You can also take a cookery class in the demonstration kitchen upstairs.