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Review: Enotecca Rabezzana

PUBLISHED: 12:07 26 April 2019 | UPDATED: 12:24 26 April 2019

Rigatoni alla Carbonara from Enoteca Rabezzana.

Rigatoni alla Carbonara from Enoteca Rabezzana.

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Italian restaurant and Smithfield Market hotspot Enoteca Rabezzana introduced a new-and-improved menu a couple of months back. Here's what we made of it.

The Mix Bruschetta Classica e Ndjua starter at this Smithfield Market restaurant.The Mix Bruschetta Classica e Ndjua starter at this Smithfield Market restaurant.

On my walk towards Enoteca Rabezzana yesterday, I passed nearby pubs so packed that there was standing room only on the pavements outside.

This was, after all, a Thursday post work in central London, and the sunshine from the previous Easter weekend had made a welcome return. But it did feel bustling and cramped.

Inside Rabezzana, however, the atmosphere was much different. It felt calmer and easy. It seemed like a fantastic spot to enjoy some authentic Italian cooking, and so it proved.

The restaurant prides itself on their knowledge and passion for Italian food, as well as a wine collection of more than 120 bottles sourced from smaller producers dotted around the Italian regions.

Enoteca Rabezzana features over 120 different bottles of wine from Italy. Picture: Tom Nicholson.Enoteca Rabezzana features over 120 different bottles of wine from Italy. Picture: Tom Nicholson.

We started with the Mix Bruschetta Classica e Ndjua, which balanced fresh tomatoes with spicy Nduja sausage and a dollop of burrata on a bruschetta base.

Luca – our friendly sommelier and native of Sardinia – recommended a delicious Vermentino white to go with it, and we found him always willing to suggest a perfect wine to match your selected plate, if you'd like some guidance.

Enoteca Rabezzana introduced a new-and-improved menu just a couple of months ago. It comes courtesy of head chef Federico Casali – who worked previously in Rome's three-Michelin starred restaurant, La Pergola – and offers signature smaller plates as well as Italian classics.

I opted for the Rigatoni alla Carbonara, which was a comforting, hearty plate of fresh pasta in a rich and creamy sauce. My guest's Tagliolino al Granchio e Datterino was also a winner; a flavourful dish which combined traditional Italian style with crab sourced from Devon.

Desserts at Enoteca Rabezzana cost �6 a piece. Picture: Tom Nicholson.Desserts at Enoteca Rabezzana cost �6 a piece. Picture: Tom Nicholson.

To finish, puddings are on the smaller side but big flavours come from these littler packages – my favourite was the Spicy Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Mousse and Meringue.

And the ambience? That's really lovely, too. There were couples loosening up with a few glasses of wine after a day at the office, friends laughing and catching up over some small plates and, next to us, a dad and his son enjoying an evening with a plate of risotto.

Enoteca Rabezzana, 62-63 Long Lane, EC1A 9EJ. For more information, click here.

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