Earlier this month I was invited to Ristorante Frescobaldi, an Italian restaurant tucked away in Mayfair, London to sample a newly launched winter menu; the assorted tasting menu was created by head chef Roberto Reatini to celebrate Tuscany’s famed flavours and dishes. Whilst paying homage to traditional tastes, it also gives a nod to the future with unexpected contemporary twists.
To add to the authentic Italian experience, each dish on the menu was written in Italian. The evening started with ‘Insalata di barbabietole con crescione e pistachio’ (okay, so I didn’t know what this was either but you have to admit: everything sounds so romantic when it’s in Italian). Anyway, it translates as beetroot salad with watercress and pistachio. The pistachio flavour was subtle yet complimentary to the sweet beetroot. Although beetroot is not grown in Italy, it was a delicious starting dish. I was very surprised by this dish as there were different variations of beetroot, both in taste (some of them were so light in colour and sweetness – I kept asking if it was all beetroot) texture and colour. Accompanying my beetroot salad was a 2013 Pomino Bianco (a fresh, light white wine made from chardonnay and white wine).
For my main, I had linguine with Lobster and chilli. The linguine was al dente (slightly too hard for me but I guess any pasta cooked the Italian way is going to slightly hard…I can’t complain though, I was looking for an authentic experience after all). One first look of the dish, I felt guilty because I was about to eat carbs, which I tend not to. However the first bite removed all guilt. The second wine of the night was a 2013 Attems Ramato (another white wine which was slightly bitter…not really a fan of it but if you like the taste of copper – seriously, ‘ramanto’ translates as copper, then it’s worth a try).
For dessert, an apple and walnut cake with cinnamon ice cream reminded me why winter is special: because of flavours and combinations like this. It’s described as a tarte but it’s a nice piece of cake. Finally, my experience was sealed with a 2007 Vinsanto Natural, a sweet dessert wine which tasted a little like rum.
I had so much fun giggling away, enjoying the food, and just staring at the décor – they practically kicked me out!
The interior is so well designed and it’s a great space with a quite and peaceful atmosphere; I’m definitely thinking of bringing my boyfriend here (thank God he doesn’t read my blog). Give it a try if you’re a lover of luxury dining and Italian food with a modern twist.
Ristorante Frescobaldi London
15 New Burlington Place,
Do you enjoy Italian dishes?