I have this tradition of trying to always bring an Italian friend with me when I go to an Italian restaurant. They, like many cultures, are very critical of their food served outside its natural habitat, Italy.
Having enjoyed many delivery pizzas from their next door venue, we opted to go to the restaurant for some dinner recently. Amici Miei “my friends” has two takeaway/delivery locations, one in Muswell and my local in Shoreditch which also has the restaurant which we ate at.
Having looked at the menu, the Burrata took Ema’s eye, as this is a very particular type of mozzarella, with a solid shell, filled with both mozzarella and cream. Ema said that this gives it an unusual, soft and hard texture. She also added, “you can get this really wrong”, so the pressure was on. Her starter was the Burrata with pesto and cherry tomatoes, which she enjoyed immensely. It was a huge seal of approval from a woman who is from Italy, but also has years of experience working in restaurants. I opted for the smoked swordfish carpaccio with pomegranate which was a huge move from what I would normally have. Firstly, I am not a fan of anything smoked and secondly, there were so many other gorgeous starters which would have been my immediate go-to option. However, I decided to experiment and it was worth it. Fresh, delicious and delicate. Yum.
For mains, the bar was set high. As I had told Ema about the lovely pizza’s I had had delivered, she wanted to taste this too. She went for their sourdough house pizza with cherry tomatoes, mozzarella, parma ham and rocket. It was a big ticked box for her. I went for home made black ink linguine with calamari, zucchini and cherry tomatoes. Pasta can be boring, but this ignited my taste buds. I think the general feeling across all of the food was just how fresh it tasted. That partnered with fantastic, knowledgeable and attentive service, made the visit the start of an ongoing relationship. Italians work here too, which adds to the authenticity. The animated talking, the melodic tone of speaking, the obvious passion for what they do – we could have been in Italy.
32 Kingsland Road
Tel: 020 7729 4192