The furore of rusty orange, bitter red and earthy brown leaves decorating London’s parks, icy winds and darker evenings all mean one thing: winter is well and truly on its way.
What better way to welcome in the cold evenings and the crisp Autumnal days than with decadent Italian comfort food. Think truffle and olive oil farfalle sprinkled with fresh chilli, juicy mozzarella and sweet tomato bruschetta and crisp, doughy pizza oozing with parmesan and topped with fiery rocket. Here are our three favourite Italian eateries in the City…
1. La Tua Pasta, Borough Market
Think spinach and ricotta ravioli, basil pesto gnocchi and pumpkin tortellini… La Tua has it all. Offering fresh, artisan pasta made with the finest Italian ingredients, their market stalls have a short but sweet menu focusing on seasonal flavours. They have four locations across London- Borough Market, Duke of York Square, Broadway Market and Barnes Farmers’ Market- all offering various kinds of pasta handmade made on site. For the experimental foodie, they also have a variety of wholesale goods packaged for you to take home and cook yourself.
2. Ciao Bella, Bloomsbury.
A friendly, family-run favourite, Ciao Bella offers traditional Italian comfort food at an affordable price in a buzzing and atmospheric setting. The restaurant looks as if it has rolled straight out of the 60’s, with images of famous film stars and celebrity singers covering the walls in black and white. Offering a range of traditional Italian dishes such as bresaola rucola with rocket and parmesan, tomato, anchovy, caper and olive napoletana and lasagna alla bolognese with béchamel sauce, there’s something for everyone. The live piano, inexpensive wine and professional service will have you returning for years to come.
3. Homeslice Pizza, Neal’s Yard.
20 inch pizzas. Yes, you read that right. Homeslice Pizza began as a humble handbills mobile wood-fired pizza oven back in 2011. Owner Ry Jessup sold slices at markets like Kerb and Street Feast, and saved up enough to launch their first store in Neal’s Yard in 2013. With a range of options, including wild venison with kale, onions and dukkah, caramelised onions, kalamata olives and anchovy, and mushroom, ricotta, pumpkin seed and chilli, the menu is as decadent as it is indulgent. Scared you won’t make it through all 20 inches of one flavour? You can half and half your doughy delight and try two flavours at once.