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by Tim Lamden
Monday, June 25, 2012
Tucked away amid an unremarkable industrial estate in the middle of Wood Green, we struggled to find Mosaica at first.
Unit C005, The Chocolate Factory, Clarendon Road, N22 6XJ
Tube: Wood Green
Tel: 020 8889 2400
Mains: from £13.50
Wine: from £15 a bottle
Children welcome: Yes
Disabled access: Yes
A quick call to the restaurant’s management for directions and we eventually found ourselves facing the formidable Chocolate Factory Studios, home to the cream of Haringey’s artistic crop and Mosaica’s base for the past decade.
Most notable Chocolate Factory inhabitant is singer-songwriter and producer Labrinth, whose recording studio sits above the restaurant.
Last year, the 23-year-old star became co-owner of the New York loft-style eatery, ushering in a host of high-profile celebrity diners including Adele, Pixie Lott and Tinie Tempah.
When you consider Mosaica’s inconspicuous location – it’s certainly off the beaten track – you wonder how such an establishment can work.
As soon as you step inside, the venue’s rugged charm wins you over and that’s before you’ve even tried the food.
The walls are adorned in artwork produced by resident Chocolate Factory artists, which are available to buy if you see something you like.
The dining area is equipped with vintage armchairs and hanging from the ceiling are glittering fairy lights.
I decided to bring my older brother along to sample what Mosaica had to offer as a treat for his 34th birthday.
He started with the chilli and garlic black tiger prawns and I went for the smoked salmon and crème fraiche with chilli and cucumber.
Both dishes were light and brimming with flavour, an excellent appetiser ahead of the main event.
In anticipation of the main courses, we ordered the house Pinot Noir and what a wondrous choice that was.
The fruity French number was a perfect match for my main course, Mosaica’s rare ribeye with garlic mash, Kenyans and jus. The steak was cooked to absolute perfection and the mash was to die for.
My brother enjoyed the 21-hour roast pork belly with mustard mash and red cabbage for his main course and was also particularly complimentary about the standard of Mosaica mash.
He paid tribute to the background music on offer as well, as we enjoyed numbers from Marvin Gaye, The Beatles and Alanis Morissette to name just a few.
The restaurant’s artistic vibe runs deep, with a number of its staff heralding from nearby Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts – we were told it is also a firm favourite of urban star Ms Dynamite.
Service on the night was lightning fast and in no time we were enjoying our desserts.
I went for the ever-reliable profiteroles with Belgian chocolate sauce and my dining companion chose the sorbet plate, which included lemon, blackcurrant and cherry flavoured scoops.
It was a wholly satisfying end to a terrific dinner. “The best meal I’ve had all year,” according to my brother.