One of the best things about restaurants in London is how so many of them now feature and promote seasonal British Produce. We have some great local ingredients and food producers in the UK and it is nice to see them served in restaurants.
Spaghetti House is a name that you might know. It was probably one of the first Italian restaurants I went to in London. They have been family run for decades and still keep to their ethos of authentic Italian cooking. In my mind they were like a chain but I have since found out that they are a group of individually run restaurants and are not a formulaic chain and the food is all fresh and cooked to order.
The decor has changed significantly since the early days and it is now all shiny and contemporary. The menus are overseen by head chef Chris O’Neill who is passionate about the food producers they work with, by developing relationships with producers and getting their produce fresh. Every month, they highlight a hero ingredient to feature on their menu.
When we were there recently, British Asparagus from Norfolk Country Asparagus of Wisbech, was the main ingredient. This years season was about a week early due to the unnaturally warm spring weather. All the asparagus was selected and picked in the morning and delivered to the restaurant within the day. Neil cooked us a selection of dishes from their menu and we sat down to an Italian feast served family style.
On the table was a plate of Battilardo d’affettati, served on an olive wood plank made to bash the Parma ham with spicy sopressata salame, bufala mozzarella, marinated artichokes, best eaten with warm rosemary infused bubble bread.
Also on the menu were these jewel like gluten-free gnocchi of purple potato, spinach & ricotta, summer squash & peppers, porcini mushroom and potato tossed in butter and crispy sage.
Other highlights of the menu
We had this super food salad, The Insalata Suprema, which comes with a breast of chicken in spicy n’duja marinade. A big warm bowl of pasta is like a warm hug, the ultimate comfort food. The Linguine with Vongole in Vino Bianco here was made with fresh Palourdes clams, white wine, chilli and garlic. This definitely hit the spot.
The perfect finish was a very summery the Affogato, hot espresso poured over vanilla ice cream, which tastes like a really good frozen coffee.
Spaghetti House serves all your old Italian favourites and some new modern Italian/British dishes served with warm Italian hospitality can be found at the regionally Spaghetti House. The pasta is always al dente and all dishes are individually prepared. I am glad to have found it again. It’s time other people rediscover them. A true London classic.
Spaghetti House has 12 locations across London and you can find your nearest one here www.spaghettihouse.co.uk