The Best Italian Restaurants
When many people think of Italian food they simply think: pizza and pasta. Which is obviously madness - Italian cuisine is one of the richest and most diverse of all, and Italian people are quite rightly very proud of their culinary heritage. Amongst the plethora of eateries offering homogenised rubbish are a few that showcase Italian food as it should be: delicate, beautiful and passionate.
L'Anima
1 Snowden Street, Broadgate, London, EC2A 2DQ
L'Anima quite rightly boasts an imperious reputation on the London dining scene, with Francesco Mazzei receiving rave reviews aplenty for his impressive City restaurant. He serves up corking contemporary Italian cuisine, and when we can get a table we always order the phenomenal baccala stuffed courgette flower.
Our rating
*****
Polpo
41 Beak Street, Soho, London, W1F 9SB
Russell Norman's first solo venture is still one of our very favourite venues in London, but if you can't get a table try his others - Polpetto, da Polpo, Spuntino or Mishkin's. If you do manage to get into this brilliant cicheti bacaro in Soho you'll be in for a treat, with great food combining with one of the best atmospheres of any restaurant in London. Just be prepared to queue...
Our rating
****-
User rating
****-
9 reviews
Ci Vediamo Li
18 Lytton Road, New Barnet, London, EN5 5BY
This charming little place is miles out in New Barnet, which is obviously a trek for most but it's a trek well worth it. The owner and chef (who doesn't speak a word of English) imports nearly everything from Tuscany, and cooks up superbly authentic Italian food with aplomb. The lardo di colonnata (aged in the marble caves of Tuscany for a minimum of six months) he brings over is astonishing.
Our rating
*****
User rating
*****
23 reviews
Bocca di Lupo
12 Archer Street, Off Rupert Street, Soho, London, W1D 7BB
Jacob Kennedy's celebrated Soho venue is still going very strong indeed, and with the quality of food coming out of the kitchen, it's no surprise. It's regional, authentic Italian fare so prepare to try something you might not have tried before but if you do need any advice, we always go for the excellent lobster linguine with mussels and ginger.
Our rating
****-
User rating
****-
6 reviews
Massimo Restaurant and Bar
Corinthia Hotel London, 10 Northumberland Avenue, Whitehall, London, WC2N 5AE
Massimo is worth heading along to purely to cast your eyes upon David Collins' sensational design, but throw in the superb food overseen by Massimo Riccioli and this place is a must. It might be expensive, but it's worth every penny. Just.
Our rating
*****
Dehesa
25 Ganton Street, Soho, London, W1F 9BP
Okay, so it's a combination of Italian and Spanish food but to be honest, the Italian food would stand up against the big boys all on its own. From the hands of the Salt Yard Group (who really know what they're doing) this place is as good for veggies as it is for omnivores, especially when the pumpkin gnocchi's on the menu - which it usually is.
Our rating
*****
User rating
****-
6 reviews

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