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The perfect place for a pre-wedding get-together, the new Richmond-based Carluccio's will be a hit with locals!
With Carluccio's celebrating its 20th birthday this year, a series of next generation sites are being unveiled to bring a dramatic new look and feel starting with Richmond, Surrey.
Roll back to 1999 and Carluccio's had just opened – everyone was talking about the designer interiors, the all-day Italian menu, great coffee and fantastic shop.
Twenty years on, at the Richmond restaurant, every detail has been reimagined – from the contemporary interiors through to the new menu, crockery and deli – and people are talking again.
The dramatic changes take inspiration from the late Antonio Carluccio's first restaurant and deli, the acclaimed Neal Street in Covent Garden, and are inspired by his food heritage and today's dining trends. Modern and stylish, the new look features cosy corners, open spaces and vibrant colours. The devil is in the detail – check out the insta-worthy foliage installation, eye-catching art and colourful ceramics.
The terrace is a suntrap and made for people-watching whilst the bar is the perfect pitstop for an espresso, a strong after-work negroni or ice cold beer. Standout interiors deserve standout food.
From antipasto to small plates through to freshly made pasta, salads and main plates, every new dish is mindful of Antonio Carluccio's motto of MOF MOF (minimum of fuss, maximum of flavour).
Must-tries are the heritage dishes, taken from the original Neal Street restaurant – Prawns Marinara (with plum tomatoes in a white wine sauce, chilli and fennel); Pappardelle ai Funghi (mixed mushrooms in a white wine and porcini sauce), and Spaghetti Vongole (cuttlefish ink spaghetti white wine, chilli, garlic and parsley). Desserts include Monte Viso, Carluccio's take on a Baked Alaska and Poached Pear in a spiced red wine syrup with vanilla mascarpone.
Other new dishes include Seafood Linguine with prawns, mussels and squid, topped with a whole langoustine and bottarga whilst on-trend vegan options come in the form of a warm Kale and Almond salad (with spinach, broccoli, mushrooms and semi-dried tomato pesto), chargrilled Cauliflower Steak (with hazelnuts, semi-dried tomato pesto, chilli and cannellini bean purée) and Veganesca Spaghetti (olives, capers, tomato, chilli, raisins and garlic and herb breadcrumbs, hazelnuts, walnuts and pine nuts).
The set menu (noon – 7pm) at £11.50 and £12.95 for two and three courses is great value. Specials change daily with, for example, veal Osso Bucco on Wednesdays and steak and wine on Fridays.
Take time out for a leisurely brunch (with or without prosecco) with new dishes like Avocado Benedict, Courgette Fritters, fluffy Ricotta Pancakes, and a 'full vegan' with borlotti beans, smashed avocado, courgette, portobello mushrooms and tomatoes sitting alongside all the classic egg choices and healthy choices of granola, fruit, porridge, fresh juices and super smoothies.
What's more, if you love dining here you can incorporate your go-to favourites in to your big day.
Carluccio's range of beautifully packaged artisan products sourced from small, family producers all over Italy. From Calabrian sun-dried tomatoes to hand-filled Piedmonte peppers and the finest olive oils, there's everything from Italian larder essentials to that perfect foodie gift. What is new though is the cheese deli featuring a vast array of regional Italian varieties including many rarely seen in the UK – from the likes of the creamy Piedmontese Carboncino, the Sardinian Moliterno al Tartufo, with generous peels of black truffle, and the Venetian Ubriaco. The more familiar Mozzarella di Bufala and Parmigiano still feature and can be enjoyed with an Italian wine match, including a great Lambrusco from the deli.
Rediscover Carluccio's – change is good!
Carluccio's, 31-35 Kew Road, Richmond, TW9 2NQ. Call 020 8940 5037 or visit www.carluccios.com/restaurant/london-richmond/
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