This is a new Italian restaurant from the team behind Manicomio (they’ve got one in the City and one in Chelsea). After reading Grace Dent’s review in the ES magazine I was super excited to give it a whirl.
It’s a large space split into two sections, with a bar in one and a dining room in t’other. It was all very relaxed and unfussy with an open kitchen adding a little drama.
We started with some lamb ribs (£6.75) which came atop a seriously smoky aubergine purée. These were proper fatty with a perfect balance between soft and crisp; pure heaven.
Black bream ceviche (£9) was really well balanced – often I find ceviche so tangy I can’t feel my face. This was light and moreish with thick chunks of bouncy bream.
Sicilian red prawn arancini (£6.75) came with a cresting crispy prawn shell which had bags of seafood flavour. It was a real looker too. Blood sausage gnudi (£10) was as rich as it gets; if you’re a fan of black pudding then you’ve found heaven here.
From the Josper grill, the pork t bone (£19.50) had a charred exterior giving it a real smokiness. The fat was crisp, the pork was moist and there was a giant strip of crackling on top – what’s not to like? Also from the grill, monkfish with mussels and fregola (£26) came drenched in a delightful buttery sauce that was good enough to drink.
A side of roasted hispi cabbage (£4) reminded me of the similar dish at Blacklock – this being equally as memorable. Making cabbage enjoyable is no mean feat.
For pud, we shared the salted chocolate delizia (£7) which was a melange of different chocolatey bits; light, dark, white, mousse, sorbet, ice cream, brownie; enough to make any chocoholic swoon.
It was a lunch most enjoyable at Canto Corvino; it’s the sort of place you can get simple, honest food without fuss or fanfare. In a nice room, with nice staff – it’s all rather refreshing. Sometimes you neither want nor need reinvention of the wheel.
We dined as guests of the restaurant.