Norma is the newest restaurant from The Game Bird’s Ben Tish, which this time is focused on the food and culture of Sicily. The Charlotte Street restaurant celebrates old-school Italian hospitality and charm, taking inspiration from the grand café culture found in Palermo. The restaurant is set over three floors of a characterful townhouse, each richly decorated and inviting. By the entrance, you’ll spot the raw ‘crudo’ bar, which serves up the very best of the menu – make sure to order the red prawns with rosemary and orange and the salt marsh lamb crudo served with lamb-fat crostini. The rest of the menu takes on the more Moorish influences of Sicilian cuisine. We enjoyed the fresh strozzapreti with pork, anchovy and orange ragu, plus the aubergine parmigiana. When it comes to drinks, be sure to sample some of the more authentic wares, such as passito and limoncello, plus the flight of three masalas that can be added to your dessert order. Delicious.
8 Charlotte Street, Fitzrovia, W1T 2LS
Decimo, King’s Cross
Peter Sanchez-Iglesias has won Michelin stars for both of his Bristol sites, Casamia and Paco Tapas, and now he’s hoping to do the same with Decimo, his first restaurant in London. On the tenth floor of the Standard hotel, Decimo offers floor-to-ceiling windows and dramatic views across the London skyline. Accessed via a red elevator on Euston Road, the rattan-filled space includes an open kitchen, intimate standalone bar clad in Jatoba wood and two attractive private dining rooms. When it comes to food, Sanchez-Iglesias merges the Spanish cuisine of his family with his love of Mexico. Expect tonnes of flavour via para picar gambas over ice; aguachile crab and jalapeño; cauliflower tacos; caviar-topped tortillas; a table-side prepared Caesar salad; and meat and seafood cooked over open fire. Highlights from the grill include suckling pig shoulder, XL langoustines and quail with mole glaze. Make sure to have a pre-dinner drink at downstairs bar Double Standard.
10 Argyle Street, King’s Cross, WC1H 8EG
Damian Clisby, former chef director of Petersham Nurseries, and Nick Gibson, owner of award-winning Islington gastropub The Drapers Arms, have opened their first joint venture. Focusing on robust dishes with a Mediterranean influence, Emile has taken up residency in Shoreditch for six months. The 40-cover restaurant is open for lunch and dinner from Tuesday to Saturday, and every other Sunday, the kitchen will pull together a family feasting-style lunch, each focused on a different cut of meat. While the weekday menu will change daily, guests can expect to tuck into the likes of pecorino with pear, pumpkin and speck; celeriac with cavolo nero, apple and toasted rye bread; potato and butter ravioli with porcini; venison loin with Kalibos cabbage, plum and thyme; Paddock Farm pork rib with anchovy and capers; followed by chocolate, hazelnuts and olive oil. A decent wine list and handsome bar space will guarantee this is a hit with locals, too.
26 Curtain Road, Shoreditch, EC2A 3NY
Wild By Tart, Belgravia
Wild by Tart is a new neighbourhood restaurant housed in a former power station and coal store in Belgravia. Within, Jemima Jones and Lucy Carr-Ellison – the duo behind top caterers Tart London – will serve their signature nourishing, wholesome fare from a seasonally changing menu. The menu is designed to share and includes the likes of pulled pheasant croquettes with harissa yoghurt; clams, nduja and cider linguine; and smoked tomatoes with burrata and basil oil. The kitchen will also serve sourdough pizzas from a wood-burning oven, topped with the likes of spicy fennel sausage, pickled chilli, confit tomato and mozzarella. The restaurant’s focal point is the building’s 19th-century arched roof with high glass panels and skylights. Beneath you’ll find counter dining at the open kitchen, communal tables and a lounge area to enjoy cocktails from the bar. Alongside the restaurant, there’s a bar, deli, juice and coffee kiosk, a retail space showcasing homeware and lifestyle pieces collected by Jemima and Lucy on their travels, plus an event space and photography studio.
3-4 Eccleston Yards, Belgravia, SW1W 9AZ
Previously of Michelin-starred Typing Room and Alyn Williams at The Westbury, Richard McLellan has partnered with Sir Terence Conran to open his first solo venture in the basement of east London hotel the Boundary London. Continuing the ethos of McLellan’s supper clubs, the menu at Wilder will have many foraged components from around London, many picked by McLellan himself. With a long-term goal to have 100% of its produce sourced from the British Isles, everything at Wilder is as sustainable and local as possible: vegetables are harvested from a local Clapton allotment and seasonal produce comes from Sir Terence’s 145-acre Barton Court Estate in Berkshire. These ingredients are showcased in dishes such as bread cracker with carrot emulsion and carrot oil; venison with beets, elderberries and rye; plaice with cockles, black cabbage and gutweed and meadowsweet with white chocolate and fig leaf oil. In keeping with the ethos of sustainability, sprawling foliage from Barton Court Estate is suspended from the ceiling, created by east London floral design studio Worm. These impactful installations also hang in the semi-private private dining room and above the cocktail bar.
2-4 Boundary Street, Shoreditch, E2 7DD
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