Nothing soothes a broken soul like a good bowl of pasta, and Mora's are bang on. While his wife, Silvia, sorts front of house, Carlo's out back flipping a mighty good pan of papardelle. He's from Sardinia and so are most of the dishes, which use traditional ingredients from the island that us Londoners aren't used to seeing on our plates. Look out for 'bottarga' - salted, cured fish roe - which is shaved over risotto or 'seadas' - deep fried ravioli filled with pecorino and topped with orange marmalade and honey. We crunched our way through a good few of them. Start with a little tower of aubergine melanzane and then get stuck into their homemade pasta. Or if you're feeling a little more curious, their weekly changing specials focus on a different region of Italy. That means drinks, pasta, and even deserts will be themed. When we were in it was Trentino's turn - which meant strudel got a look in. Pair with local craft beers or something Italian, natural, and organic from the tidy wine list.
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Al Santo has a bit of a friendly rivalry with Del Aziz across the road – it's not as well known as the chain, but it's always a buzzy atmosphere inside. The food ain't half bad either. It's a good mish-mash of Italian and Greek recipes, including a homemade tiramisu that they'd probably kill to protect the recipe for. It's not cheaper than Del Aziz, but you get more of a family restaurant feel, which we always enjoy.
You definitely need a dose of this bright, colourful and airy Southern Italian joint in your life. If authentic Southern Italian cuisine (Puglia, to be exact) doesn't pique your interest somewhat then there's something a bit wrong. Ingredients come from the motherland herself, while the walls are lined with wine bottles, making for interesting interior design. What do you eat? Well, that's never gonna be easy to decide in a spot like this, but the 'Pasta Chef' dish changes on a daily basis, according to what the big man can get his hands on in the markets. Wash your dish of choice down with some fine Italian wine or, if the sun's shining, a seriously refreshing aperol spritz. When in Rome...
The Italian Job
Copious amounts of craft beer served by a charming bunch of Italians. The only swift manoeuvres these guys will be pulling is their downward hand on the beer pumps. You probably shouldn't miss out on their Italian street-food either - hamburgers, charcuterie, you name it. There's a small 'beer garden' out front as well, so you can sip your Italian craft beer on the street.
Four To Eight
***Closed. 04/18*** Daily changing menu consisting of sharing plates, pasta dishes, sandwiches and steaks. This is the produce of two brothers that used to own the Italian sandwich shop in the same spot. Try the calamari and crayfish to start.