⦿ Jay Rayner of The Observer reviewed Plot in Tooting, “a sliver of a restaurant serving terrible cocktails and great food in one of south London’s traditional covered markets”. “Thick curls of squid, crusted with a chorizo crumb on a salad of tomatoes that taste of something, is a bit of textural fun. It’s followed by a dainty […]

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Fresh from the launch of Radici in Islington, Italian chef Francesco Mazzei has announced plans to open a third restaurant in the new Battersea Power Station development this summer. Fiume – Italian for river, in reference to the Thames-side location – will serve Italian classics under the day-to-day running of head chef Francesco Chiarelli, Mazzei’s fellow-Calabrian. There will be […]

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The owner of Mayfair seafood restaurant Assunta Madre has been arrested in his native Italy on money-laundering charges. Gianni Micalusi was arrested with his two sons, his bank manager and accountant and is accused by Rome prosecutors of laundering nearly €900,000 in cash from “illegal activities”. He was remanded in custody. Micalusi, a rotund 52-year-old former fisherman, […]

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⦿ In the Observer, Jay Rayner reviewed Barbecoa, the new Piccadilly flagship from Jamie Oliver (pictured, left, with Raymond Blanc), a grand and expensive “meat and smoke extravaganza“. “It feels like a big New York brasserie crossed with a branch of Hawksmoor. The real action is downstairs in a basement space which laughs in the […]

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⦿ In The Observer, Jay Rayner reviewed Aquavit, the St James’s offshoot of an “award-garlanded” Swedish restaurant in New York – “And, oh boy, check out that swagger.” It turned out to be “a proper Nordic noir thriller but for all the wrong reasons… It’s altogether more Trump Tower than Wallander. Everything is shiny and golden […]

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Jamie Oliver is to close six of his Jamie’s Italian restaurants, his company blaming a “tough market” along with “post-Brexit pressures and unknowns” for the move. Is this one of the first examples of 2017 of under-performing businesses reaching for the Brexit ‘get out of jail free’ card? The closures are at Ludgate Hill in […]

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A rule-breaking pizzeria bringing the values of the Slow Food movement to the ultimate Italian fast food opened in Hoxton Square this week. Radio Alice, named after an underground Bologna radio station shut down by the carabiniere in the 1970s, cooks the pizza base separately from the topping – apparently to “avoid incinerating the feisty […]

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⦿ Jay Rayner of The Observer reviewed Margot in Covent Garden, a “fancy Italian” where dinner-jacketed waiters have “that easy, relaxed style around food which really pisses off the French because they haven’t a clue how to do it.” “At Margot they can offer you a special of tagliatelle with white truffles for £55 and not even raise their […]

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The team behind east London high-flying former pop-up The Clove Club has announced plans to open a “Britalian” restaurant and bar in St John Street near Smithfield meat market next month. Orkney-born chef Isaac McHale said Luca would present British produce “through an Italian lens”, with dishes such as ravioli of grouse with potato and […]

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TV chef Gino D’Acampo is parking his pasta machine on Jamie Oliver’s lawn with the announcement that his third My Restaurant will open in Leeds city centre by the end of the year – directly opposite Jamie’s Italian. Billed as “the UK’s favourite Italian chef”, D’Acampo made his name through TV appearances including a victorious […]

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