The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

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London’s is home to so many Italian restaurants that are as varied as the food and wine-loving country itself. Capital A List will guide you through the best Italian Restaurants in London that encompass the cuisine and design inspiration of the rustic south through to the fashion-forward north Italy.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Hammersmith’s own stylish answer to the Brooklyn terrace means that locals and visitors alike looking for inter-regional and across-seasonal cuisine must head to the bank of the city for one of the best Italian restaurants in London. The River Cafe, co-founded by the late Rose Gray (one of the forebears of British cookery writing, and joyful, chatty naturalism in Michelin level cooking), is tucked into the hip of Hammersmith’s Thames-side edge.

There is no such thing as homeostasis at The River Cafe. There is constant, infectiously chirpy movement: the prep of extensive anti-pasti dishes hand than across the width of the gleaming stainless steel kitchen top, the white heat of the sun bounding off the pure frosting-hue awning that extend from the gigantic windows. This palpable energy is reflected in the daily changing menu (in which the ingredients of the recipes follow the flow of summer, autumn, winter and spring).

Although the Menu is ever-shifting, rest assured the River Cafe, as one of the best Italian restaurants in London, will offer up exclusively authentic dining experience. The fixed points of wood roasted Pizza gives the dough and mozzarella combinations a smokier, darker touch that draws out the richness of the oils and fresh vegetables involved; and the special River Cafe Gelato is always available in their original, mature delicacy (we recommend combining the caramel with roasted almond with an affagato expresso twist as the perfect afternoon hit).

With plenty of garden seating arranged on the terrace at the crest of a riverside hill, and wine to try from the top to the bottom regions of Italy — Veneto to Abruzzo — The River Cafe is as scenic as it is culinary accomplished.

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

With over twenty years of experience to hand in the competitive high-end London chef environment, the owners of South Hampstead’s Fiddies stepped up to the heat of the oven and triumphed: as a result, a part-delivery special service now also offer perfect sit-down Pizza and seafood cuisine as one of the best Italian restaurants in London. At Fiddie’s the generous, familial ambience of Italian Culture is as integral to the service as the traditional combinations of those first napoleon flourishes. Guests are encouraged to sit, linger and enjoy — explaining why Fiddie’s won London’s Diner’s choice in 2016.

The Boutique shopfront and classy chessboard decor pleases the eye while the abundance of 12 inch pie (because this is the truly authentic serving), delicious House red and white wines, and special touches like the hearty vegetarian Calzone and their namesake Antipasto plates (set to blazing heights with the melding of Tuscan and spicy Salamis within olive dressage) mean that this intimate eatery is one of the best Italian restaurants in London.

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

If Italy is defined by one particular image, it is the sunflower. The sight recalls the sweet saying dance yellow field and towering leonine plant faces — wild happiness. If the heart of Hammersmith is the open, garden boulevard of high-end venues, then L’amarosa is the sunflower; one of the best Italian restaurants in London. For one, its an audaciously, wonderfully bright dinnertime locale. Comfortable chic seating (of buttermilk and dark chocolate theme — once again recalling the iconic ‘Italian white’ sunflower) seems to bloom beneath the central window-sill and crop back and back in intimate couplets across the wood floor – perfect for a pizzeria or pasta date for two.

Not only this but L’amorosa, as one of the best Italian restaurants in London, is effortlessly elite and signals life and longevity as much as the flower (especially if its recent Michelin Bib win for five-star cuisine is an indicator of anything).

At L’amorosa it seem imperative to sample the speciality after-dinner menu, from the mellowing lull of Limoncello to the kick of their spectacular God Father cocktail (Amaretto and scotch whisky). This is restaurant that knows,and owns, its accomplishments in Italian convention — certainly consider trying their selection of cheeses or their home-made, perfectly pungent Oregano Tagliatelle — it is head and shoulders above the rest.

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

One of the best Italian restaurants in London for value as well as the especial standard of food and drink is Notting Hill’s Mediterraneo. Decorating a corner that abounds off Portobello road with its eye=candy, eye-popping face, Mediterraneo is royal blue for its princely,fine dining experience. The bubbly, relaxed veneer of this neighbourhood favourite works in symbiosis with the rich, earthy dishes to offer ultimate respite.

Although the contained plaza and rustic decor within — intricate coffee tiling and parchment hue walls — is a treat, its the outside seating that renders diners part and parcel of the intoxicating energy of the eclectic Notting Hill pavements. The congenial prices don’t mean that Mediterraneo skimps on quality of authenticity. With lashings of artisan bread to soak up the decadent olive oil as guests soak up the atmosphere, guests can enjoy beloved dishes at their leisure; from the Tuscan vegetable soup to the Carpaccio Beef brazed with Parmesan tang. A seasonal salad with emphasis on the latest flavours means the fresh bed beneath their addictive Chilli tiger prawns and calamari always represent the world around you, and suffuse with the senses at large. And to finish, we couldn’t recommend the Mediterranean berries more.

There is no question why Mediterrano has lasted the test of time and the threat of gentrification since its opening in 1998, they were always and remain a superlative, restful experience for the soul in one of the most vibrant spots in the city.

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

However, if diners seeking the exclusive experience of Meditarraneo’s should always explore the alternative evening at its sister restaurant Osteria Basilico — a soul sibling that holds an equal precedence as one of the best Italian restaurants in London. This Notting Hill comfort on the corner welcomes guests with the exuberant swathes of sunset red and bundles of potpourri bouquets glimmer off Osteria’s collection of spotless glassware. With a winsome arrangement of chic tables in and outside by the market-road, Osteria is a place to bask in the day.

The addition of avocado to Italian dishes of basil and mozzarella showcases the way in which Osteria moves with London’s contemporary interests even as it holds through to a fabulous foundation of Tuscan-Mediterranean fare. And it truly is a place to treat yourself, their calzone comes with servings of dolcelatte cheese, the decadently sweet glue that holds perfectly homemade dough together. And with such a uniquely luminous area at every hour of the day, stay a bit longer and savour authentic expresso beneath the sunshades at Osteria or its sister Mediterraneo, the twin jewels atop of the crown of London’s Italian food.

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Experience a little corner of Tuscany at the Villa Di Geggiano on Chiswick Road. This example of the best Italian restaurant in London pays homage to the original Villa Di Geggiano, that has been the family home and winery of the Bianchi Bandinelli family in Tuscany for five centuries. The decadence and hospitality of the Tuscany Villa is mirrored at its London site, and guests first experience this as they walk through the serene garden of olive trees and enter the restaurant. The upper floor is luxurious with its members club inspired lounge spaces at which dinners are hosted frequently with live artists. A piano bar, art gallery and cigar rooms are also available to guests and each are designed with a sophisticated flair and the beauty of Tuscany in mind. The main dining space is grand and bustling and the décor is inspired by London’s art world while still maintaining a natural and comfortable ambience that is felt in the terrace area with its canopy of vines.

Villa Di Geggiano celebrates true Tuscan and Italian fine-dining cuisine and many of its ingredients are imported from the Villa to the UK. Its menu is small but perfectly formed with luxurious dishes including its cured meat selection, tagliolini with fresh crab and Tuscan sausages flown in from Siena. Its wine list includes many of its own wines especially selected from their wine estate in Tuscany and we recommend that you pair one of their delicious and organic wines with your dish of choice. Villa Di Geggiano has recreated the essence of Italy in Mayfair with its opulent interior and traditional Italian cuisine, and for this reason it is one of our top choices for the best Italian restaurants in London.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Sartoria is the only restaurant on the Historic Saville Row in Mayfair and this combined with its Italian heritage inspired its glamorous Italian design intertwined with quintessential English charm. David d’Almada designed the plush interior that comprises a heated terrace, Libare bar, two private dining rooms and an exquisite wine cellar. The menu designed by the renowned Chef, Francesco Mazzei, matches the elegance of the interior and is inspired by the Italian coastal region of Calabria. Italian cuisine is iconic for its simplicity but at Sartoria, the menu combines Italian cooking traditions with modern techniques to create the ultimate fine-dining experience and one of the best Italian restaurants in London.

The A La Carte menu is available for all day dining and is split into Antipasti, Primi, Secondi and Contorni, which is great for guests that would like to try a bit of everything. Start with an Antipasti of crab salad with crisp horseradish and a Primi of tagliolini with fresh lobster, Amalfi lemon, chili and basil. A veal Milanese for £33 per person it the perfect Secondi to share between two people, alongside a Contorni dish of roast potatoes or deep-fried zucchini. Your taste buds will also be transported to coastal Italy with Sartoria’s drinks list that comprises twists on classic Spritzers as well as their own in-house creations like the Little Venice for £12.50 made with Belvedere vodka, cocci americano, violette liqueur, lemon juice and egg white. Sartoria has one of Mayfair’s largest rooftop terraces and this is an ideal spot to relax with an afternoon or evening cocktail whilst watching the busy streets of the West End. Its glamorous Mayfair location coupled with its timeless design and cuisine make it one of the best Italian restaurants in London.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Gloria in Shoreditch is the first UK outpost for the Parisian restaurant group, Big Mama, and everything from the Italian cuisine, interior decorated with vibrant antique Italian ceramics through to the waiters dressed in candy-striped uniforms transport guests to Capri, Italy in the 50s and 60s. Gloria’s ethos is to give guests a real glimpse into Italy and this makes it one of the best Italian restaurants in London. It focuses on authenticity which is represented in its rustic interior, Italian staff and cuisine based on the freshest ingredients and home-grown recipes.

Guests can expect a taste of Italy by starting with cured meats and mozzarellas and then by moving onto their larger selection of pizzas and pastas. A highlight is the Carbonara a deux that is served from a giant cheese wheel into your bowl. This is not only delicious with its decadent and creamy cheese flavour but is also a true spectacle to behold. Another main course that is equally superb is their house special Pasta al Tartufo which is a luxurious mixture of black Molise truffle, fresh Mafalda, macarophone and button mushrooms. It would not be an accurate reflection of Italy without Pizza and Gloria does not disappoint. The pizzas are hearty and full of smoky and light flavours, and guests can select from a vast array of delicious toppings. The best part is that the kitchen serves pizzas until the early hours of the morning. Gloria naturally has a wide selection of Italian wines, but their cocktails are what define it as one of the best Italian restaurants in London. Their take on a classic Negroni is unlike anything else in London with its unique addition of porcini mushroom wine and a truffle foam.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Located in the heart of Marylebone is Fucina, a modern Italian restaurant that resembles more of an art gallery than the design of a conventional Italian eatery. Its modern design is perfectly encapsulated in its exposed brick ceiling that mimics the domes of a pizza oven. This artistic element is paired perfectly with its simplistic floor-to-ceiling windows that catch the light of the white walls making the space seem more expansive and welcoming. Its modern design aesthetic is also subtly carried into its simple turquoise blue seating and soft armchairs making it one of the best Italian restaurants in London for chic interiors.

The clean-cut nature of the interior is echoed in the menu which is a contemporary and honest approach to Italian cuisine. Fucina is one of the best Italian restaurants in London due to its unconventional approach to its food. They embrace simplicity as the best indicator of quality and showcase this in their open kitchen where the best organic and local ingredients are prepared. The menu is designed around sharing plates of increasing size, starting from a selection of small plates before leading into larger portions of pastas, pizzas and flame-cooked dishes. Start with the nocellara olives and the tuna tartare with spicy yellow sauce, crispy capers and green apple and end off your meal on a decadent note with the Spring lamb cutlets garnished with fried rosemary and pressed black berry jus for £26.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Bocconcino in Mayfair embodies the beauty of Italy with its classic cuisine, world-class service and hand-picked selection of Italian wines and thus typifies what it means to be one of the best Italian restaurants in London. Its interior is grand with soaring ceilings and black-and-white images of classic Italian scenes decorating the walls. It also imbues the expansive space with warmth with its exposed brick walls, soft wooden furnishings and tall mirrors hanging on the walls by the entrance.

Their menu offers Italian classics with a vast selection of antipasti and main dishes inspired by the diverse regions of Italy. Bocconcino is divided into two spaces, the first is the downstairs area where wood-fire oven pizzas are the speciality; and guests can expect to be a part of a buzzing and vibrant atmosphere. Each pizza is prepared daily on-site and cooked with classic techniques, with one of their signatures including the Pizza Bocconcino made with stracchino, mozzarella, fresh tomatoes and parma ham. The upstairs restaurant is more refined and is ideal for clientèle that wish for a more intimate and elegant dining experience. Alongside the delicious pizzas, their menu offers simple Italian classics with a selection of antipasti and contemporary main courses. Larger dishes include an array of fresh seafood and meat cooked over an open fire. The perfect complement to a hearty and classic Italian dish is one of the many bottles of wine sourced from winemakers in Italy’s most acclaimed wine regions as well as from small and local artisan producers. The division of the restaurant into two separate spaces, where different ambience can be experienced, make Bocconcino one of the best Italian restaurants in London.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Margot in the heart of Covent Garden celebrates the best of Italian food and wine against a backdrop of sophisticated and elegant décor. Its unparalleled service defines it as one of the best Italian restaurants in London. Both owners, de Tarso and Jaouen have accumulated a wealth of experience in service with the former being one of London’s most acclaimed maître d’s at The Wolseley and Scott’s in Mayfair, while the latter was previously the director at the Rivea in Knightsbridge. Therefore, with its roots Margot has excellent service levels that are both graceful and intuitive.

Margot is an excellent example of one of the best Italian restaurants in London – and this is typified in its luxurious Parisian-inspired interiors. Guests cannot help but feel elegant whilst being surrounded by deep blue banquettes, art deco copper fixtures, sleek tiled floors and a bar decorated in green glass. But the cooking is traditional Italian and is centred around quality seasonal ingredients inspired by many different Italian regions. Margot enlisted chef, Maurizio Morelli whose culinary experience includes numerous restaurants in both Rome and London as well as Briciole in Marylebone which he actually launched himself. His menu encompasses classic charcuterie, cheeses, carpaccios and tartares, pastas and larger plates of grilled meat and fish. Begin with one of their small plates of salami and cheeses whilst perusing the extensive menu. Start with a beef tartare with quail eggs, asparagus and Pecorino Sardo and for mains Pasta is where Margot really shines. One of our favourites was the crab ravioli with mascarphone, saffron sauce and cherry tomatoes for £23. It exemplifies the best of pasta dishes with its soft and cloudlike pasta and flavourful filling. For a meat-based dish the grilled and sliced ribeye steak with celeric puree and caramelised shallots for £22 is a phenomenal choice. To wash it all down, select one of their 350 bottles of wine especially curated from around the world, or one of their signature cocktails

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Tucked away in the basement of the Hari Hotel in Belgravia is the subterranean Italian restaurant, II Pampero. This is one of top picks for the best Italian restaurants in London with its exceptional cuisine and sophisticated setting that embodies modern and vintage Italian chic. It was designed by the admired designer, Tara Bernerd, who has perfectly captured the essence of the bygone era of Italian glamour through the all-white tablecloths, forest green furnishings and accents of gold, whilst also peppering the interior with hints of modernity through the geometric floor tiles and stylish marble-clad bar. II Pampero’s food and interior matches its prime city location within walking distance to Harrods, The Royal Albert Hall and Hyde Park.

The kitchen is helmed by Claudio Covino that once was a chef at the iconic Novikov and Locanda Locatelli. Under his supervision, everything is made from scratch and this includes the bread and pasta as well as the charcuterie which is smoked and cured in-house. II Pampero, therefore, is one of the best Italian restaurants in London as it delivers authentic Italian homemade dishes that have also been given a contemporary update. If you are in the mood for a starter as well as a main course, we recommend beginning with a fresh dish of mozzarella served with seasonal vegetables caponata which can then be followed by a rich and luxurious meat or fish dish. The stewed ox cheek delicately wrapped in parma ham and served with melted scamorza cheese for £24 or a £22 roasted salted cod fillet served with braised escarole and cannellini are excellent choices. A side dish of butter spinach, sautéed garlic broccoli or grilled asparagus as well as a glass of wine or a cocktail from their extensive lists are the perfect complements to a big and delicious meal.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

The term Manicomio is Italian for Madhouse and this a playful reference to the Italian restaurant’s history as the Royal military asylum in Chelsea. Manicomio does not resemble any similarities, a part from its name, to the original site, but is rather one of our top picks for the best Italian restaurants in London. It is a sophisticated Italian eatery that has been serving luxury Italian fare specialising in fresh and seasonal produce and home-made pastas since 2003.

Manicomio comprises a restaurant, bar, café and terrace. The expansive terrace is one of the highlight features making this one of the best Italian restaurants in London. It is reminiscent of a rooftop restaurant in Italy with its floral views of the buzzing Duke of York Square shopping precinct. At the restaurant, notably chefs Bobby Cabral and Tom Salt serve simple Italian cuisine bursting with homeland flavours. Start with a salumi board for two for £16.50 with a selection of artisan meats and carta di musica. Pastas are plentiful and encompass ravioli, linguine, risotto and gnocchi options. One of our favourites was the market seafood risotto for £28 with tomato, chili, garlic and basil. For mains, the chefs prepare a decadent selection of fillets, meatballs, chicken and fish dishes. Their meat has been dry-aged for a minimum of 45 days to enhance the flavours and tenderness and we recommend selecting one of their Char-grilled Sirloin or Ribeye dishes with a side of grilled vegetables or tomato salad. They also have an excellent selection of wines and two highlights were the Bonny Doon and Pacific Rim Riesling.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

In true Italian style Daphne’s in Chelsea combines the elegance of modern and classic design. Its chic surrounding, curated by Martin Brudnizki, epitomises the familiar Italian charm that one would expect whilst travelling Italy. It evokes a sophisticated yet welcoming ambience through its effortless mix of vintage Italian chandeliers, modern marble-topped bars and contemporary European art. Daphne’s is beloved by celebrities and the Chelsea elite not only for its beautiful surroundings, but also for its forty years of high-quality seasonal Italian cuisine, making it one of the best Italian restaurants in London.

Behind wrought-iron French doors is a European-style bar and dining room. Expect the service to be as elegant as the surrounds with a basket of warm bread and olive oil along with a cocktail menu inspired by Italian classics immediately brought to the table. We recommend starting with a Half century cocktail for £13 which is their Italian classic Negroni made with Plymouth Navy Gin, Campari, Cynar and aged Vermouth. The menu focuses on the best seasonal produce and Mediterranean flavours and the A La Carte menu offers a wide selection of the finest Italian staples. Start with a beef carpaccio with rocket and parmesan for £12.30, followed by one of their fish or meat dishes. The Dover Sole for £39 and Lamb Cutlets with Salmoriglio for £28.50 are two highlights that typify the superb quality of their menu. Service is second to none at Daphne’s, and with a sommelier on stand-by, guests can select a suitable wine pairing from their impressive cellar that houses a plethora of fine Italian wines. Daphne’s also has a conservatory that can accommodate up to forty guests for a private lunch or dinner and a seasonal menu can also be curated for each private function. The conservatory has a retracting roof that makes it a sublime location to host a cocktail reception during the summer-time, and further enhances Daphne’s as one of the best Italian restaurants in London.

 

The Best Italian Restaurants in London

 

Harry’s Dolce Vita in Knightsbridge is stunning from the moment you look at its gold metal door adorned with bright red decorations through to when you step inside the intimate Italian restaurant with its sophisticated private club like finishes. Its classy interior incorporates rustic brass fixtures, plush vintage leather seating and wood-panelled walls lined with black and white photographs of Sophia Loren, Frank Sinatra and Nat Cole King. Harry’s Dolce Vita is the latest restaurant from the Caprice Holdings and with their success with The Ivy and Sexy Fish, it comes as no surprise that Harry’s Dolce Vita is one of the best Italian restaurants in London.

The menu pays homage to the traditions, tastes and flavours popular in Italy. Each dish has been carefully curated by Chef Director, Diego Cardoso, to ensure that they typify Italian comfort with a side of glamour. Their menu specialty is their pizza as they lovingly prove their dough for 72 hours to maximise flavors. One highlight includes the Rosso for £15.95 made with spicy peperoni, red onion, roasted peppers and fresh chili and black olives. Harry’s Dolce Vita works directly with Italian suppliers and importers and this makes their ingredients for their fish and meat dishes as authentic as a local restaurant in Milan. This is one reason why Harry’s Dolce Vita is one of the best Italian restaurants in London. Meat and fish dishes include the Bistecca di Manzo ribeye and simply chargrilled seabass fillet accompanied by fennel, zucchini, lemon thyme and olive oil. Their central bar serves some of the best Bellini cocktails in Knightsbridge. This works brilliantly with their iconic dessert, the Harry’s Toadstool that not only looks amazing in the shape of a bright red mushroom, but also follows through on the flavours brimming with white chocolate, fresh raspberries, iced vanilla parfait and pistachio biscotti crunch.

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