Review of Locanda Locatelli

[Locanda Locatelli](,8 Seymour Street, London, W1H 7JZ, UK _Good Italian food ruined by some of the worst service I've had in a restaurant in years. These people need to learn some manners and learn how to smile._ ![]( This was our final dinner in London and I had very high hopes. I've been a fan of Giorgio Locatelli since the wonderful Tony and Giorgio TV series in 2002\. He came across as a great cook with a sparkling sense of humour. It's just at the back of Marble Arch tube station and is in an "Italian restaurant looking" building. The door staff were friendly enough and the counter was piled high with his new book. We were shown to a table with only one couple near us. Unfortunately they were the stereotypical loud Yanks who must have spent 20 minutes discussing wine with the sommelier so we could all tell how much they knew. Our waitress come over and greeted us with a with a characterless "buona sera, good evening", handed over menus and told us the specials in a style more suited to someone reading death notices. She also mentioned a special cocktail of the evening involving strawberries which we both went for and enjoyed. One expects a bit of friendliness and chat in an Italian restaurant not robots repeating learned lines and clearly not giving a crap what you think of anything. But that is what we got for the entire meal. It was like the place had been taken over by the Red Army Faction. Had Giorgio just cut their wages? The grumpiness and curtness got to the level of being funny. "You finished with the breadsticks?" "You finished with the bread?". The wine list was extensive and completely beyond me but I had taken a dislike to the sommelier too having listened to him at other tables. So I picked one of the few things I recognised, a pinot grigio, and went with that. Actually I think a normal waiter asked for our selection, we must not have deserved a sommelier. The wine started slightly harsh but got much better over the meal. They then proceeded to fill our glasses every five minutes with approximately 3 millilitres of wine. The glasses spent 90% of the time empty. I finally gave up towards the end and said "you may as well keep going" which caused a pained smile to appear on his face. The food? Good but not incredible by any means. Catherine had some salad to start but a week later she has forgotten the details. I had a very tasty dressed cress salad with sweet onions and some fantastic salami which they described it as cured neck of pork on the menu. We both decided to skip the meat course as nothing grabbed us at all and we went with pasta as mains. We also both picked specials - this is something I do more and more now. I work on the assumption that it is their freshest stuff and they will try to impress with it.   Mine was a ravioli of oxtail in a tomato based sauce. It was excellent. Deep flavours and lovely textures but about half the size it should be for a main. Catherine had a red mullet based pasta dish with tomato sauce. We both assumed the fish would sit on the pasta but it had been broken down into tiny pieces and mixed in . Whilst it was tasty enough, it could really have been any fish and disn't impress as much as mine. I went with the special desert which was a fig based tartlet. Good but not particularly memorable. Catherine had the usual chocolatey thing which was ok but again didn't stick in the mind. Two quick coffees and we were done. Barely 1.5 hours. The bill arrived and we were out the door without one person asking us if we had enjoyed the meal. I had heard that this was one of the top three Italians in London, if not the best. I had also read somewhere that they were after a Michelin star. Based on our experience they haven't a hope, I've had friendlier and more genuine service in a McDonalds.  Rated 2/5 on Oct 21 2007 by Conor O'Neill Review Tags: [dining](, [eating](, [food](, [italian](, [italy](, [restaurant]( Rate this review or write your own at [LouderVoice](

Conor O'Neill

Tech guy who likes running slowly

Bandon, Cork, Ireland