Luca: Leading London's food Italian Renaissance
I’m not one for samey round ups and bashing out 'my-top-five-sides-of-the-year...' malarkey. But, in this post, rather than honing in on just one dining experience, I’m delightfully referencing the handful of times I’ve been lucky enough to eat at Luca in Farringdon throughout 2017, because for love nor money, I just can’t pick a favourite.
Since first trying THAT cornflake chicken in The Clove Club, I’ve had a soft spot for anything the team might turn their hand to. When news of their Italian bun in the oven filled Twitter feeds towards the end of 2016, I couldn’t get there quick enough in the New Year. Say ‘aye’ for more Italian vibes in this town… hello Padella, Harry’s Dolci, Sorella – I’m looking at you and all your carby, cheesy food porn-loaded amici.
In brighter months, bountiful carpaccios are delicately dressed with chili whilst plump buratta sits on freshly podded just-cooked peas and broad beans, with toasted almonds for crunch. Superbly al dente asparagus is snuggled under a melted pecorino and roasted hazelnut blanket. Dishes have that ‘I-woke-up-like-this’ look, which we all know if harder to achieve than it sounds.
Whether at the counter or private dining room, pastas always wow, and I’m grateful that the kitchen will knock out gluten free versions so I don’t miss out. A big pile of spicy octopus spaghetti delighted and the lemony pecorino and pistachio linguine once made my day. Whatever time of year, Darty has been known to swoon over the spinach and ricotta ravioli with crispy sage. I can’t close without championing the chickpea pancake; Luca's version of THAT cornflake chicken. In fact, it might just be my favourite bar snack in London right now.
I’ve toasted milestone moments in the dining room, coupled with quick lunches at the bar and whilst different vibes, every mouthful and sip has been bliss. Come rain or come shine, the common thread running across the seasonal menu is comfort food dialled up a notch or two.
Five Very Kerri things about Luca
- Nuttys on everything
- Liberal lashings of salty pecorino on request
- The PDR
- Value for money lunch menu
- THAT chickpea pancake