Pasta is the big thing at the moment right? Padella kicked it off. Then Stevie Parleâ€™s Pastaio got in on the action and now Flour & Grape in South Londonâ€™s Bermondsey Street.
Itâ€™s where Antico once was, the owner deciding to give the place an overhaul and focus mainly on pasta and wines by the glass so now we have Flour & Grape. The space is similar to before with exposed bricks and a buzzy filled-with-locals atmosphere.
We start with burrata (Â£6) which is surrounded by prosciutto braciotto. The cheese is creamy and gooey which works well with the ham. I donâ€™t think Iâ€™ll ever find an unpalatable burrata.
Pork tenderloin tonnato (Â£7) – thatâ€™s slices of cold pork with a tuna sauce – is a bold and successful flavour combo but itâ€™s not for the faint hearted. Bruschetta (Â£3) is a solid classic; a reminder that good quality ingredients need little tampering with.
Gigli pasta (Â£8) sees little frilly pasta shells perfect for scooping up the sausage ragu. The sauce is perfumed with fennel and every mouthful feels rich with butter. Tortelloni (Â£10) come generously stuffed with roasted pork shoulder. The pasta casings are light and delicate as is the sage butter while the pork provides a meaty punch.
Easy on the eye are ravioli bulging with vibrantly purple beetroot (Â£7). Itâ€™s the sort of dish Iâ€™d gladly go veggie for. A walnut sort-of-pesto is a nutty little accompaniment.
For dessert there’s a small list of gelato. Two scoops of tiramisu (Â£4), strong with coffee and chocolate, makes for a surprisingly refreshing end. If they sold it in tubs I would have gladly bought a van load of the stuff.
We had a fab meal and the fact it was busy our entire visit shows theyâ€™re doing something right. Was it better than Padella? Possibly not. But with Padellaâ€™s queues often lapping Borough Market, being able to book at Flour & Grape is starting to look rather attractive.
Would we go back? Yes
We dined as guests of the restaurant