101 Dean Street
Website: Spacca Napoli
Okay - its been nearly a year since this hag has posted anything on this blog. Sheer lazyness I tell ya, coupled with personal and professional changes (i.e. not being able access blogger at work etc - not that I'm slacking boss - really!) I guess. But enough digression, its time I made my comeback. A place so worthy a mention that its dragged my sorry behind out to actually put fingers to keyboard. So here it is - I give you Spacca Napoli - Italian pizzeria, restaurant extraodinaire! Okay, perhaps I'm exaggerating a little but this place was pretty good.
London is a treasure trove of Italian restaurants - you can't go anywhere without running into one. Which is the best? Everyone has their favourite locals and favourite not so locals. If you're around Oxford Circus/Soho, make the trek - its well worth it. We arrived on a Saturday night at 8pm to an already crowded restaurant and left with queues out the door in the rain. This place isn't such a secret as we thought so I guess bookings are advisable.
Now to the food - unfortunately, as it was an impromptu visit, no camera action was to be had. Plus, it was a wet day and both the Man and I were wet, grumpy and hungry. Hardly a conducive environment to think about you good folks out there - we wanted food, goddammit and we wanted it now! So after browsing the menu, starters of Antipasti Misto and mussels in a tomato sauce.
Both startes arrived in good time and now it dawned on us why the waitress was looked surprised that we'd ordered a couple of starters instead of sharing. The antipasti consisted of grilled vegetables, mushrooms with garlic, cured salmon, some meatballs in tomato sauce and a grilled aubergine with cheese. All delicious and very moreish.
The mussels was served with two small slices of garlic bread. Be warned, If you're on a first date and love your mussels, bring an extra strong dose of mints - there's enough garlic here to ensure that you'll have garlicy sweating through your pores the next day. This dish, if had with extra bread, is probably enough feed a normal appetite and was lip smackingly good. On a cold and wet night such as this, it definitely hit the spot. And the good news was our mains were yet to come. As we were teased by the excellent starters, the anticipation and expectation of our mains grew. And they didn't disappoint.
The Man's italian colleagues raved about the pizzas in this place. Just like what they have at home, so with that in mind we had to have a pizza. One of their specials with mozzerella, aubergine and sausage but unlike the traditional pizza, this was more a sandwich pizza. I forget the name but just ask one of the friendly waitresses (mostly italian speaking, if you're so inclined) and they'll be more than happy to help. It came on a wooden serving board and is enough for 2 to share or one enormous appetite. Or if you're in a group, you can order pizza by the length - from a quarter to three quarters of metre (where you get to pick 2 to 4 types of pizzas) to share.
Despite us being seated in a dark, dusty corner not once did we feel banished and inconsequential but rather service was attentive and helpful. Plus, we had a great view of their professional pizza maker transforming lifeless lumps of white dough into golden, lucious bites. I don't think I can say more.