The other weekend I had the pleasure to go into London with my other half to meet up with his mother and sister and a family friend. Even though I go up to London every day to work, I still feel s though I’m a tourist in the big smoke. It’s a large city, full of places I have yet to explore. On this particular day we went to Sloan Square to have lunch at a local Italian restaurant called Como Lario.
Set on the relatively quiet Holbein Place, it’s a little gem of a restaurant, tucked away just off Sloan Square tube station. It’s recently had a refurbish and looks as neat from the street s it is on the outside. It has an intimate an friendly atmosphere, whilst still being a very open and light space. The artwork on the walls tells stories of the history behind the restaurant as well as of the slight edginess of the place. This is how they describe themselves:
Our recipe for success is simple. Inspired by traditional Comasco cooking, we offer delicious modern Italian cuisine prepared with skill and creativity. Our restaurant’s ambience is intimate and sociable. As for our staff, they combine warmth and friendliness with a passion to deliver the highest standards of service. Our new team headed by Francesco Mattioli and chef Stefano Battisti look forward to welcoming you to our refurbished “hustaria”.
The authenticity of this Italian restaurant is not just prevalent in the staff and the service but also in the menu. As we were catching up and having a look at the menu we had a lovely selection of bread and bread sticks with olive oil to keep us occupied and to work up our appetite. I eventually decided on the vegetarian “Gnocchi con Radicchio, Mascarpone, Noci”, i.e. the gnocchi with chicory, Mascarpone cheese, and hassle nuts for main course.
In true Italian style I was offered some Parmesan cheese to be grated onto my gnocchi to which I kindly accepted. One can never have too much cheese! We had a really nice rosé wine with our food which I unfortunately can’t remember which one it was – no, not because I had too much of it!
The food was splendid. My other half had the lamb shank which he said was “the meatiest” lamp shank he’s ever had – a very good rating that is. Everyone else was very happy with the food as well and even though I was very full, I of course still had room in my “dessert belly” for dessert!
This poached pear was an absolute dream to eat. Boiled in red wine and spices for however many hours made it just melt in the mouth. Together with a bit of vanilla gelato and it’s a real winner. A dish I could (and will!) come back for.
After we’d finished our dessert, we went for a walk down Royal Hospital Road. I’ve never explored this part of London before and I can say now that I really like it! Although we’re so close to Victoria it’s a bit away from the buzz of the city and some of the houses around the area is just to die for… Continuing down to the end of the road you’re at the river Thames, just opposite Battersea Park. If I were to live in central London, I think this area would be on top of my list. For now, I’m happy to be an hour outside London so that I can continue to come in and explore all the different parts of the city on a weekend.
Do you know the area around Sloan Square well? Or have you ever been to Como Lario? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below or on Twitter!