best italian london

Yes, this is a restaurant that serves its diners decadence before they’ve even picked up the menu, but it’s most certainly not a case of style over substance. Muted neutrals, lofty ceilings, glass walls and copper accents lend all the refinement you’d expect of a Mayfair restaurant, and the menu is generous, too. It's all so good you'll consider dropping by for breakfast the next day. Then there’s an almost overwhelming choice of pasta, pizza, meat and fish, with daily market specials for the latter. They were right to offer us additional bread for the sauce: this is pasta at its best. And anyway, the pasta is worth the wait. The fettuccine with black pepper, parmesan and Amalfi lemon, a sort of cacio e pepe with more citrus, is velvety and delicious. Filter and search through restaurants with gift card offerings. The queue up Borough High Street each evening suggests that their second restaurant is not aimed purely at locals. The chef, who is also behind Rotorino in Dalston (above), has simplified things for this central London spot. Slow-cooked sausage ragu with malloreddus (Sardinian gnocchi) was rich and spicy, with a depth of flavour that seemed to follow us out of the restaurant like a gorgeous groupie. From the grill, it’s worth checking out their porchetta, which is so moist as to seem chemically impossible. 39 William IV Street, WC2. It's a beautiful, twinkly space, with vintage glass panes, reclaimed wood and blackened steel, reminiscent of French industrial design. Not so much. In the buzzing and cosy ground-floor restaurant order a selection of herby meatballs (there's also a veggie option), creamy buffalo-mozzarella pizzette and nicely spiced crab and chilli linguine or a delicious dish of squash, gnocchi, blue cheese and walnuts. Don't skip the primi – the pasta dishes are the stars of the show (the pici cacio e pepe never disappoints). Its walk-ins only policy means that you should be prepared to wait for a table upon arrival, but you know that thing they say about those who wait? Almost all of the staff are Italian, the food is affordable, filling and delicious and the vibe is something like a Summer wedding in Sicily. It feels like you’re at an intimate wedding in the Italian countryside, no matter where they plant you. Best Italian restaurant for: seasonal dishes with Italian flair Dish to order: pappardelle with beef-shin ragu This always-packed north London restaurant has been a favourite since it was launched in 2010 by Jordan Frieda, ex-River Café, and Tim Siadatan, an original recruit at Jamie Oliver's Fifteen project. Other classics include Americanos and Aperol Spritzes alongside a couple of wines and two London lagers on tap. This is the version of our website addressed to speakers of English in the United States. Now his food comes with an Italian accent, but fans will recognise his signatures: crispy chicken skins top cheese agnolotti, some of the best desserts in London (including Pump Street chocolate and fennel gelato) are never too sweet, and his love of charcuterie, fermenting, pickling, curing and smoking are present and correct with plates of 20-month-aged prosciutto Marchigiano and black-pepper coppa served with tangy farm pickles. The interiors are crawling with greenery and the space is candlelit making it a great place for a date. 4 Knightsbridge Green, Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7QA. Best Italian restaurants in London Obicà is a chain of Italian restaurants, but what it does it does very well. A roast grouse with figs and lentils was also delicious, once you figured out its anatomy. Order a selection of starters to share, including the creamiest burrata, crispy zucchini fritti and lemon-topped calamari. But while the interiors are slick, the food on the menu is seriously hearty. Or on a balmy summer's evening, sit outside and people-watch on one of London's most charming streets as you feast on Napoletana pizza with salty anchovies and capers, hearty spaghetti with meatballs, and home-made tiramisu - with shots of raspingly sweet limoncello to finish, of course. It would be a shame to visit Margot and not try their pasta, so opt for the pappardelle con ragù di cinghiale – wild boar to those of us who need to brush up on our Italian – if you’re in the mood for something rich, or the linguine vongole if you want a lighter dish. And, as we have come to expect from Parle, the homemade pasta is a winner too: porcini and ricotta ravioli and rigatoni with veal pajata. London's Italian-restaurant scene is as varied as the food-loving country itself, from old-school trattorias to new-wave small-plates, and, of course, the best home-made pasta – these are the best Italian restaurants in London. We liked the namesake pasta alla Norma, which is a simple supper with tomatoes, aubergines and ricotta. It tastes as good as it sounds. Address: Lina Stores, 51 Greek Street, London W1D 4EHTelephone: +44 20 3929 0068Website:, Lina Stores: A Great Little Place We Know, with Masha Rener. If you try just one thing to start, make it the fried raviolo filled with cacio e pepe. If you’re up for more, the tagliata steak – juicy slices of beef with rocket and Parmesan – is great for sharing. As the country shivers under the grey sky of our dreary political climate, there is a corner of East London that has brought sunshine, good times and a trattoria off the coast of Capri to the capital. Headed up by chef Louis Korovilas, who previously worked at Locanda Locatelli, Bancone in Covent Garden takes its inspiration from many of the 21 regions of Italy. Excellent pasta without the queues you’ll find at Padella. You won’t want to skimp on the starters or mains, so our advice is to skip pudding and order an extra plate of pasta (the calamarata with squid, white wine, chilli and pistachio is a standout). The location might be inauspicious - next to a cash-and-carry and a fried-chicken shop - but this is one of the coolest spots in Stoke Newington's restaurant-packed streets. Address: Trullo, 300-302 Saint Paul's Road, Highbury East, London N1 2LHTelephone: +44 20 7226 2733Website:, Bocconcino serves up hearty, classic Italian food in elegant but pared-back surroundings. Go on a Sunday (do book) and you can eat all three courses for just £20. Then there’s the spiral staircase that swoops down to the lower floor, glass handrails glistening in the soft golden light. Our personal favourite was the duck and foie gras ravioli: something this ballsy shouldn’t be so moreish, and yet here we are gasping for another plate days later. 15 New Burlington Place, London W1. The spicy pork 'nduja ragu with mafalde pasta has just the right amount of kick and the wonderfully straightforward cacio and pepe is as smooth as can be. Address: Polpo, 41 Beak Street, Soho, London W1F 9SBTelephone: +44 20 7734 4479Website: The stalwart deli has been supplying its regulars with handmade pasta and all the trimmings since the 1940s. All the wines are Italian – we recommend the bold Puglia red Negroamaro, which can be ordered by the glass, and as a happy coincidence it’s the most affordable on the wine list, too. That way you can make sure you're able to try both the simple-but-stunning classic dishes as well as the more complex items on the menu. We could have taken or left the starter of zucchini fritti with burrata – it’s the pasta that has locals coming back week after week. Save up to 50% at London restaurants when you book on Tripadvisor, “The food was delicious we chose calamari and, “Glad we tried this lovely little place!”, “Probably one of the best experience in...”, “Always a good choice for a nice dinner on...”, “... with wild boar ragu and a pistacchio, “... are amazing but we were too full to try one- but the, “What a gem this turned out to be! Unlike its more-hyped neighbour, it is not plagued by hour-long queues – book a table at one of the discreet booths, surrounded by tiled floors and arches that give the dining room a Moorish feel. The menu is northern Italian and full of strong, earthy flavours and impeccably sourced ingredients: mushroom and lardo bruschetta, spaghettini with squid and mussels, venison saddled with creamy Parmesan polenta. Does it get any better? The braised octopus with is masterful cephalopod cooking, and the steak- yes, I know, it’s just a steak- really does go above and beyond, almost wagyu in its butteriness. Genius! Smooth ribbons of pappardelle with meaty wild boar ragù and pillows of tortelli Maremmani doused in sticky butter and sage sauce are the winners. Although it’s tempting to stick to pasta and wine – as the name above the door recommends – you’d be a fool to skip the small plates here. Kick off with some antipasti – bite-sized cuts of salumi e formaggi or a silky tuna tartare with crispy capers – but save room for the primi. The basement bar feels like a hidden-away secret and was serving tiny tumblers of Campari Spritz long before they swept every hipster bar in the capital. But the runaway success here, no matter when you’re going, is the pasta selection: if the pappardelle with rabbit and porcini ragu, orange and rosemary is here, it’s a perfect argument that gaminess is the thing that brings ragu from comfort food to a work of art. With 280 covers, plus space for another 60 on the outdoor terrace, it measures 835 square metres and is every bit as flamboyant as Gloria. 40-41 Rathbone Place, London W1. In the upper dining room, there’s an olive tree, satisfyingly positioned exactly in the centre of the space. Steve Parle is quietly and confidently making quite the name for himself as one of London’s most talented and creative chef-restaurateurs. Address: Melanzana, 140 Westbridge Road, London SW11 3PFTelephone: +44 20 7228 5420Website: Address: Ciao Bella, 86-90 Lamb's Conduit St, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 3LZTelephone: +44 20 7242 4119Website: By Sarah James, Address: Ida, 222a Kilburn Lane, Queen's Park, London W10 4ATTelephone: +44 20 8969 9853Website:, Named after the flour typically used to make pasta, this contemporary pasta workshop and Shoreditch restaurant (interiors are tiled in green, and there are lots of trailing succulents) is playing with Italian tradition and flavours. This always-packed north London restaurant has been a favourite since it was launched in 2010 by Jordan Frieda, ex-River Café, and Tim Siadatan, an original recruit at Jamie Oliver's Fifteen project. If you can, bag a couple of spots at the marble-topped counter of this smart and shiny hotspot and then eat your way through Italy's most delicious regional dishes. This site uses cookies to improve your experience and deliver personalised advertising. Plates of pasta, made that day, are served with simple ingredients in a simple setting: canteen-style terrazzo-patterned tables lit with pendant lights. It's the ultimate comfort food. Here, they display wines that they say have been served to the likes of Renaissance visionaries and Popes, the waiters and waitresses provide an exquisitely pleasant service, and the walls are adorned with murals and the ceiling is covered in ivy, making it feel as though you've entered a 15th century Italian villa. Even better was the pheasant, rabbit and pork agnoli – little punchy parcels of pleasure in a slick and sexy sauce that would reduce Giorgio Locatelli to tears of joy. In the bathrooms, marble and gold furnishings ensure that the Bocconcino experience never wavers. Looking to expand your search outside of London?

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