Indulge in a passion for pasta; there’s a wealth of authentic Italian restaurants in London serving dishes as good as you find in Rome, Bologna, the Emilia Romagna region and more. From local eateries to the coolest private members’ club, these are our favourite restaurants for pasta in London
Set in the heart of the thriving north-east London neighbourhood of Stoke Newington, Osteria Wolf celebrates Italian food with a menu that changes with the seasons. You can expect wholesome, delectable dishes inspired by cuisine from all over Italy. Diners head here from all over London to enjoy the beautifully presented food and the intimate, laid-back atmosphere conjured by retro furnishings. House dishes include beef shin ragu with paccheri (large tube-shaped pasta) as well as pappardelle with fennel sausage, brown butter and raw egg. Remember that the dishes change frequently, so be prepared for a surprise or two.
Osteria Wolf, 110 Stoke Newington High Street, London N16 7NY, +44 (0)20 7254 4141
If you’re going to the ballet at Sadler’s Wells Theatre or are browsing around the ever-more popular Farringdon and Clerkenwell area, there’s no better place to enjoy pasta than Luca. From the outside this looks like a cosy yet stylish date-night restaurant, but step inside and head to the spectacular back extension where high ceilings, elegant decor and glass walls present contemporary sophistication and glamour. In summer the small outdoor courtyard adds to the Italian atmosphere. Luca is the second enterprise of the team behind the much-applauded Clove Club in Shoreditch, so you will probably arrive here with high expectations ‒ and you won’t be disappointed. From the tasting menu with wine pairing to pasta creations such as squid ink bucatini (thick spaghetti-like pasta) with braised octopus, and rigatoni (tube-shaped pasta) with sausage ragu, every dish is delicious.
Luca, 88 St John Street, London EC1M 4EH, +44 (0)20 3859 3000
Burro e Salvia
Shoreditch’s Burro e Salvia is a pastificio and trattoria with a family-friendly atmosphere ‒ as in any authentic Italian restaurant. Be sure to try the signature pasta, agnolotti (ravioli-like small squares of pasta) filled with pork or beef and served in a butter and sage sauce, as well as one of the superb desserts. This place is very much a local favourite complete with friendly staff and a home-from-home atmosphere. If you’re looking for great Italian pasta to cook at home, simply choose from the range of freshly made pasta you can take away.
Burro e Salvia, 52 Redchurch Street, London E2 7DB, +44 (0)20 7739 4429
Lina Stores Restaurant
This Instagram-worthy haven is the prettiest Italian deli and restaurant in Soho. You’ll probably recognise it from its mint green striped awning and its fresh-looking decor ‒ all of which have made it a place to be seen at. We love the team here; the staff members are vibrant, chatty and always ready to give you advice on the menu and ensure a lively evening. Along with pasta, Lina Stores offers excellent cocktails, wine and desserts. Sit in the cosy restaurant in the basement, or if you want more atmosphere grab a seat by the bar and watch the chefs do their magic in the kitchen. Top dishes include ricotta and herb gnudi (a sort of dumpling) and black truffle and ricotta agnolotti.
Lina Stores Restaurant, 51 Greek Street, London W1D 4EH, +44 (0)20 3929 0068
Emilia’s Crafted Pasta
Emilia’s Crafted Pasta owes its name to the Emilia Romagna region, home of many of Italy’s best-loved pasta dishes. It started in 2016 with the opening of a restaurant at St Katharine Docks and recently gained another foothold in London, bringing its pasta to Aldgate. Start a meal here with a selection of antipasti, such as olives, bresaola or burrata, to whet your appetite before preceding to the pasta. Expect dishes such as rigatoni with homemade tomato sauce, basil and buffalo mozzarella, and classics like carbonara or pappardelle with a Bolognese sauce which has been slow cooked for hours.
Emilia’s Crafted Pasta, 77 Alie Street, London E1 8NH, +44 (0)20 7702 9944
Part of ever-growing and uber-trendy private members’ club Soho House, the new Cecconi’s restaurant in Shoreditch is located on Redchurch Street, one of the coolest streets in London. Cecconi’s is a relaxed modern Italian that oozes style and serves cicchetti (small plates), pasta, seafood and pizza from its wood-fired oven. Here you can indulge in traditional Italian cocktails and also a much acclaimed Sunday Feast, an epicurean meal served between noon and 5.30pm. If you come for dinner, be sure to try the spaghetti lobster and our favourite burrata in London. The interior is as striking as the food, with marble floors and softly lit booths. Take a look at the art on the walls, too, the Soho House Redchurch Townhouse is hub for creatives, showing 40 artworks by artists under 40 who all reside in east London.
Cecconi’s Shoreditch, 58-60 Redchurch Street, London E2 7DP, +44 (0)20 3841 7755
Located just a stone’s throw from Upper Street, Trullo delights with its Italian-inspired food. Simplicity is a defining trait of the restaurant, which places a strong focus on the seasons and top-quality produce. Italian flavours serve as the starting point for a menu that is centred around fresh, handmade pasta and the kitchen’s charcoal grill. Whet your appetite with a selection of antipasti, before tucking into the pasta: you can look forward to Trullo’s take on Italian classics such as pappardelle with beef ragu, or the restaurant’s signature dishes including the spectacular nettle tagliarini topped with an egg yolk. Follow with the grilled fish or meat of the day, before ending the meal on a sugary note, with desserts that sit at a crossroads between Italian and British cuisine. From start to finish, Trullo’s dishes are bursting with flavour and executed with finesse. With a menu that changes twice a day, no two visits to this Islington restaurant will ever be the same.
Trullo, 300-302 St Paul’s Road, London N1 2LH, +44 (0)20 7226 2733