Grace fell in love with the simple no-frill Italian food at Briciole in Marylebone
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What can I tell you about Briciole? There were so many things that I could say about this casual Italian joint, but for now I’ll just stick with one big fat compliment: with its no frills approach and authentic food, Briciole has some of the best Italian food you can find.
With loyal customers coming back for more, I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. As i walked into the unassuming restaurant, I was greeted like an old friend, and with Prosecco in hand, it wasn’t long before we were uhmming and aaahing over the delicious array of small dishes on the first page of the menu.
The first page of the menu was filled with tasters of cheeses, breads, cured meats and more, the idea being you select a few from each section to get you started. We dove right in with plates of intensely salty dried wild boar sausage and a devilishly divine burrata bruschetta with spicy nduja. Then thin strips of tender roasted veal in a strange-looking grey, pureed tuna sauce with capers. It was served cold and not a looker, but had a fantastic salty-sweet flavour.
Moving on to bigger dishes we tried a bowl of beef meatballs, smothered in a deep red tomato sauce with a subtle grating of Parmesan. The sauce itself was classic Italian, rich and earthy with loads of woody herbs, which enhanced the flavour of the meatballs that had been left blissfully untouched by extra ingredients.
From the grill we had the swordfish steak. Again happy to see that the meaty fish hadn’t been tampered with. The fish had been griddled to perfection. Slightly pink in the middle with dark score marks on the flesh that gave it a lovely nutty note. And simply served with black pepper, olive oil and a wedge of lemon.
I was not prepared to leave without trying some of Briciole’s freshly made pasta, and couldn’t resist the ewe’s cheese ravioli. These huge round discs of sun-yellow pasta filled the bowl to the brim, and were served simply with a generous glug of olive oil and a scattering of broad beans and black olives. The flavours and textures were simply spot on, making this simple dish the highlight of the meal.
To finish I had a wonderfully boozy tiramisu that hit all the right marks, but the Sicilian cannolo with candied orange zest and chocolate was undeniably the favourite. This classic Italian dessert looked like a pastry cigar bursting with a firm cream filling. The pastry was flawless. It had just the right amount of flakiness, and the cream filling had a sweet citrus tang that cut through all the richness. My dining companion insisted that I state it this was ‘the best dessert he had ever had- Fact’,and I couldn’t have put it better myself.
For more information visit briciole.co.uk