[London] If you pay a visit to Borough Market, you may notice that the restaurant with one of the longest lines is Italian bistro Padella.
Designed as a pasta bar, Padella serves great meals at reasonable prices any night of the week. Some say it is the perfect place to escape the tourists at Borough market.
It is also awarded with a Michelin Bib Gourmand.
They have also recently opened a 2nd restaurant in London on 1 Phipp Street at Shoreditch.
Behind Padella is the duo Tim Siadatan and Jordan Frieda, who first teamed up in 2010 to launch Italian-inspired resto Trullo.
From the street peer thru glass panels and witness fresh hand-rolled pasta in the making.
Here’s a little tip: Due to its limited space, Padella Borough Market doesn’t accept bookings.
Instead, queue virtually by signing up with the QR codes outside the resto or thru the WalkUp App.
So the best approach is to head there at 11:30am (a couple of minutes before for you to download and register the app – in case you have not) because the QR code will be revealed then.
Register first, scan the QR, then get notified of your turn while you shop around the Borough Market. If you are later in the scanning, the wait can be as long as 1.5 hours or more.
Inside, this laid-back resto is split over two levels and houses a bustling open kitchen. I chose to see at the counter because that is where I can catch all the action.
Metal counter seats run across the entire length of the sleek bar, while bespoke pendant lights add a cosy ambiance. Inside, the low-lit dining room has a more intimate feel.
Padella’s short menu is a showcase of classic Italian techniques. It features antipasti, eight fresh, handmade pasta dishes, puddings, and drinks.
At the core of the pasta dishes are slow-cooked sauces and ragu inspired from the duo’s travels around Italy, while some pastas echo Trullo’s greatest hits.
On the menu included Ravioli of Westcombe ricotta with slow cooked tomato sauce (£10.50), Cavatelli with Cavolo Nero, garlic & ricotta salata (£12), and Pappardelle with 8 hours Dexter beef shin ragu (£13) – combines tender slow-cooked beef with fresh, juicy tomatoes and aromatic garlic.
If you fancy soft buttery cheese, you should love their Burrata (£7.50), an Italian cow milk cheese made from mozzarella and cream, drizzled with Le Ferre olive oil.
Other antipasti include Mixed Italian Olives (£3.5), Padella sourdough with Le Ferre olive oil (£4), Grumulo, Parmesan & Balsamic (£6.5), Salame Molinari (£6.5), and Olasagasti anchovies, salted butter & crostini (£9.50)
Padella’s signature dish, the Fettuccine with Cobble Lane cured nduja, mascarpone and lemon (£9) – with a dente handmade pasta with delectable bite in rich, winning sauce.
It may look simple, but the core is doing the basic things right and tasty.
Pici Cacio & Pepe (£10) is a simple, yet confident dish made with parmesan, lemon, and black pepper.
They make this pasta sans egg to make it doughier, allowing the sauce to stick to the pasta better.
I was more indifferent towards the Tagliarini with dry chilli, garlic and pangrattato (£8), not because it wasn’t delicious or flavourful, but I preferred to savour that chewy ‘bite’ of the pasta in comparision.
Coffeeholics can finish it off with an espresso or make it genuinely Italian caffe by adding a shot of grappa or sambuca ala caffe corretto.
Leave room for a puddings like Salted Caramel & Chocolate (£5), Amalfi Lemon Tart (£5) or Vanilla Ice Cream (£4.5) – make it Affogato +£4.
A delightful though crowded place with solid, good, affordable pasta. I can understand why it is so popular.
Padella (Borough Market)
6 Southwark St, London, SE1 1TQ, United Kingdom
Tel No.: +44 800 282930
Opening Hours: 12pm – 3:45pm, 5pm – 10pm (Tues – Sat), 12pm – 3:45pm, 5pm – 9pm (Sun), Closed Mon
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