Everyone get ready for one of the tastiest meals I’ve had in a long time at Florentine London. Bold statement – yes but one that I think deserves that crown. Just think flatbreads, lattes and bellinis and you’re about there. Hunting for a great place for food in London can be difficult, locating one that really makes your mouth water and is setting itself above the rest is also extremely tricky. There are just so many so how can any stand out more than another? I was invited to the super trendy day and night bar and restaurant, Florentine London, to check out their current summer a la carte menu. Put it this way, we ended up staying for a good three hours. Read on to discover why Florentine London has wowed both me and my TripAdvisor gold star reviewer, my Mum.
We got off the train at Lambeth South station (near Waterloo) and went across the road. It was really easy to find as it is essentially right next to the Park Plaza Waterloo – so a fine choice if you happen to be staying at this hotel.
We were immediately greeted by attentive staff and served by a waiter of Romanian decent. Of course, my Mum being my Mum, she some how got into talking about where about the waiter was from etc. Hilarious is my Mum! Regardless of her chatting away the waiter was extremely polite and attentive throughout, offering his recommendations in cocktails (which we had on arrival and were spectacular) to the wine we should perhaps have with our meal. We decided to go for a Romanian wine – something both wine lovers ourselves had never tried, but our waiter insisted it was a good choice. Which is was.
The menu was basically full of options I’d chose, a very rare combination to have, so it took us a good 15 minutes to decide. I got completely distracted by their breakfasts actually Both Mum and I love fish so it was obviously going to built around having fish as the main course. We were greeted by a watermelon cocktail – something I’ve never had but goodness it was delightful!
I had the Roasted Sweet Potato & Kale, which was a combination of cashew nuts, pumpkin seeds, chicory, chive dressing, and my Mum had the Asparagus & Parmesan, rocket, Vesuvian tomatoes & almonds. The starters were absolute perfection, and even though it took us a good 15 minutes to even chose one, this starter set the meal off on the right food. Nothing was too over powering but it was still equally delicious. We were offered nibbles if we wanted, but both Mum and I aren’t big on eating a vast amount so something light to begin is the ideal option.
NETTLE SOUP Crème fraiche £6
CURED MEATS SELECTION £9
San Daniele ham, mortadella, coppa, wild boar salami
IBERICO BELLOTA 5J Pan con tomate £12
TAGLIATELLE Tomato, basil £7/ £11
FRIED SQUID Lemon mayo £7
SMOKED BURRATA Heritage tomato, basil cress £8
TUNA TARTARE Avocado, lime, ponzu £9
BUFFALO RICOTTA RAVIOLI, Black truffle £8/14
ROASTED SWEET POTATO & KALE £6 / £10
Cashew nuts, pumpkin seeds, chicory, chive dressing
CHICKEN & AVOCADO £7 / £11
Baby gem, sweetcorn, honey & mustard dressing
ASPARAGUS & PARMESAN £7 / £11
Rocket, Vesuvian tomatoes & almonds
I think the prices were very reasonable actually, and obviously if you really wanted you could make your salad large to have as your main. In fact you could do that with a number of starters. I’m sure you’ll agree there is a very eclectic range.
After we had enjoyed our cocktails and starters, we tasted the Romanian damiana sauvignon blanc, (£22 for a bottle) we moved onto our fish dish. The wine completely compliments both our selections. In the end we both decided to have the Grilled Wild Sea Bass. There was a long debate between that and the Roast Salmon. The Sea bass, had Spinach, roasted vine tomatoes, Amalfi lemon. You might wonder if it was filling, but what I didn’t mention was the home made bread. When we enjoyed our appetisers, the most delicious home made bread was put on the table, so being hungry I tucked right in. Best bread in a basket I’ve ever had, not sure what it was exactly but it blew my taste buds away.
I wasn’t sure if the main dish would be a bit oil or dressing heavy but it wasn’t at all. Very succulent and enjoyable, with my Mum feeling exactly the same. During our mains we really had begun to relax in this chic and trendy environment. It was so trendy you felt intimidated or out of place, which in London is quite rare. We could even see the chefs at work with their open hatch, with their immaculate conditions.
BEEF LASAGNA £11
BAKED SHAKSHOUKA & DUCK EGG £11
Aubergine, peppers, tomatoes, chilli, parsley
GRILLED YELLOW FIN TUNA STEAK £17
Green beans, tomato chimichurri
GRILLED PLUMA IBERICO BELLOTA £18
Roast aubergines, harissa
ROAST SALMON £14
Grilled asparagus, hollandaise
GRILLED WILD SEA BASS £18
Spinach, roasted vine tomatoes, Amalfi lemon
STEAK & CHIPS £19
220gr grass-fed rib-eye, 32 days aged, béarnaise
ROAST HALF CHICKEN, Sweet potato £14
230gr organic beef patty, lettuce, tomato, chips
Add: cheese / bacon / avocado / fried egg £2
BIG TO SHARE
TOMHAWK – £67
1 kilo, grass-fed beef, 35 days aged on-the-bone,
OSTRICH EGG FULL ENGLISH BREAKFAST £65
(For 4 people, subject to availability, pre-order
Fried or scrambled, Portobello mushrooms, tomatoes,
streaky bacon, Cumberland sausages, baked beans
Hand cut chips / sautéed spinach / mashed potato
green beans / sweet potatoes / heritage tomato & basil ALL £4
SMOKED BURRATA, AUBERGINE, TOMATO £8
SPINACH, GOAT’S CHEESE, TAHINI £7
WILD MUSHROOMS, RICOTTA & TRUFFLE £9
TUSCAN SAUSAGES, STILTON, ROCKET £7
SMOKED SALMON, WATERCRESS,
HORSERADISH CREAM £9
Onto the pudding, now at this point I was really filling up! Even though we had very light options, I must admit I’d been filling up on that moreish bread! Never mind, I do have a desert section, (something I came up with as a child to always justify eating a pudding). Mum went with the Cheese Selection, containing Cropwell Bishop Stilton, Robiola goat’s cheese, Tuscany Pecorino, cognac’. I of course went for the Vanilla Pannacotta with raspberries. I have a confession to make I’m not actually a fan of vanilla based products, and I’d normally go for something with chcoclkae. I decided to be brave and try something out my comfort zone. Gosh. Such a rich, lush and creamy base it was utterly divine! The raspberries and the sauce weren’t overpowering either, and I basically devoured the lot.
VANILLA PANNACOTTA, Raspberries £5
STRAWBERRY CHEESECAKE £5
VENETIAN DOUGHNUTS Marsala cream £5
ICE CREAM & SORBET £5
CHEESE SELECTION £11
Cropwell Bishop Stilton, Robiola goat’s cheese,
Tuscany Pecorino, cognac’
You can tell from my review that I thoroughly enjoyed our visit to Florentine Restaurant. I’m always open minded but quite thorough with my food reviews, and I couldn’t actually find any issues with this place. The food was luscious as was the flavoursome beverages. Both Mum and I left saying we’d 100% return. Mum has also said she is going to do a review on trip advisor – so you know it is good. Nick and I in London soon and I’m going to stay at the hotel nearby and take us for another visit. If I could I’d give it a solid 10 out of 10, but no place is perfect and there is always areas for improvement so I will serve it a 9 out of 10. Absolutely perfect, if you head to that part of London whether it’s for breakfast, lunch or dinner I bet you’ll feel the same as me.