Restaurant review: Paesan, Exmouth Market, EC1
- Credit: Archant
I’m not sure how many Italian restaurants there are in London, but it must be approaching four figures.
In a bid to differentiate his new venture from this plethora of pasta joints, owner Anthony Brown, whose pedigree for Italian cooking runs deep, has adopted the concept of cucina povera – kitchen of the peasant.
As a result you get all sorts of oddities not found in most Italian establishments; things like pizza frittas, which are fried before going in the oven to give extra crisp; animal stomach lining, gnudi and so on.
The restaurant stands proudly at the bottom of Exmouth Market on a corner space that was formerly home to a steak house, but the interior has been completely changed to give a pleasing, appropriately rustic appearance.
We started with a do-it-yourself antipasta board, taking our pick from a wide selection of meats and cheeses; and the salami, proscuitto, burrata and marvellous plump Tuscan olives got things off to a flying start.
You may also want to watch:
From the piccolo selection we had the arancinci; delicate rice balls freshened with lemon, and a tripe and steak ragu, which was dripping in rich meat and tomato flavours, which overpowered the sometimes unsettling aftertaste of the offal. For the mains, the linguini pasta was fantastic, chilli and garlic packing a hefty punch and permeating right the way through the dish.
The bistecca tagliata was a simple affair but effective, essentially a steak and cheese salad but lovely nonetheless. Thin strips of juicy beef with generous shavings of salty parmigiano, it’s definitely one for the chaps.
- 1 Man killed in 'shooting' in north London
- 2 Appeal to find four children missing from north London with father and grandmother
- 3 Man jailed for rape of young girl in north London 40 years ago
- 4 Man killed and two injured in triple shooting
- 5 Helen Anderson: Finsbury Park murder victim's father pays tribute to his daughter
- 6 Disused Holloway garages converted into garment-making workspace
- 7 Why Arsenal's Leah Williamson is perfect England captain?
- 8 Kacem Mokrane: Islington man amongst seven charged with 2017 murder
- 9 Islington kids are being 'drawn into county lines drug smuggling'
- 10 'Proper old Islington boozer' voted best pub by readers
In a crowded market place, Paesan has brought enough to the table to stand out.