But also went to Antico's gin bar downstairs last night. Cosmopolitan, elegantly rammed and serving Negronis until the sun went down...and then some ! Excellent.
Same venue, two very different vibes....take your pick
From the outset, Nick's Assistant Manager and then his Event Manager were helpful in the planning of the day.
There were 31 of us, including 2 young children and everything about the event was excellent: food, service, ambience.
Despite booking for 35, there were [inevitably] last minute gaps due to illness - but I picked up a couple of friends, at the 11th hour.
Everybody enjoyed the day! We lingered for 3 hours and then went over to Shortwave, in Bermondsey Square, to sit in the sun.
Many thanks, Nick, Victoria and Crew :-)
Nick and the team are doing a FANTASTIC job - this is a great restaurant !
The food in the restaurant was excellent - the monkfish risotto in particular ! Despite it being VERY busy, the staff were friendly and efficient.
A post-meal drink afterwards in the bar again made it a great evening.
This is a good restaurant, but with the addition of the basement bar, it has become a great one !
However, today (Friday) I wanted to find somewhere for a cocktail and Village East/Hide were both rammed. Went into Antico's underground bar and was very pleasantly surprised. Only planned on staying for one drink, but ended up staying for three thanks to a very friendly Italian barman who talked us through all the ingredients. Had a lychee martini followed by a cocktail called "cosicaldo" -- a tequila and lime-based drink with some chili in it.
Just got home but already contemplating popping back out after dinner for one more!
Again, it was busy and buzzy - candlelit on tables and window-sills, on both walls. We were greeted warmly, our booking checked and led to our table. I do like the entrance lobby, with a beautiful arrangement of flowers; it is very welcoming. The music was at just the right level for a busy room and we didn't have to shout across our table.
Bread and oil were brought and we ordered a Bellini each, which arrived swiftly. A very good start. We took our time studying the compact menu and plumped, finally, for Chicken Liver & Pancetta Pate Crostini and the Squid and Prawn Fritti. Both very tasty!
I ordered Tiger Prawn Linguine and my guest chose Braised Lamb Neck Fillet in Red Wine with soft polenta. We shared a leaf salad, with a tangy lemon dressing.
We tasted each other's choices for both courses and agreed that all the food was excellent; tasty, well presented and just the right size portions.
My guest passed on pudding but I had a very cheeky, and generous, portion of Tiramisu. The waitress kindly brought two spoons and my guest succumbed to a few spoonfulls of the sweet, light dessert.
We chose a bottle of 2010 Nero dʼ’Avola IGT Sicilia [Terra Firma], which is their House Red, and a really good choice.
The service was faultless [our candle was replaced within moments of burning out]; Nick, the proprietor, Jo, the Manager both came over for a chat - and they worked the busy room, serving guests.
We both thoroughly enjoyed our visit, which was an unhurried 1hr and 40 minutes; just right. A palpable hit!
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