Peter Morrell is at the launch of the latest addition to the City of London’s vibrant dining scene
Lasagneria Italiana is right in the heart of the City, a one minute stroll from Bank station, I was there recently to celebrate the launch of exciting new cocktail bar and restaurant.
Just in time for winter you can get some comforting, hand-crafted cheesy pasta layers in glorious Italian flavours in your belly. With seasonal menus designed by award-winning chef, Antonio Sanzone.
Lasagne is what Italians sit down to every Sunday. The ultimate comfort food, and Italy’s official answer to the British weekend roast, has been cleverly elevated by chef Antonio Sanzone’s fair hand with City sophisticates in mind.
Gone is the soggy, stodgy pasta door-stopper cooked by Brits in its 1990s hey-day. Little wonder the dish fell into oblivion. Lighter and brighter, these rich, mouthwatering lasagne have been handcrafted and packed with seasonal Italian ingredients from Italy’s foodiest regions.
There are scented black truffles from Piedmont; crispy onion toppings in a nod to Genoa, the obligatory spicy N’duja from Calabria and from around Milan, the creamy blue-veined deliciousness that is Gorgonzola cheese. Contemporary twists on the classic dish that hails originally from Naples include a salmon and avocado lasagna and a big breakfast version fully loaded with a fried egg and sausage.
Vegan and vegetarian options are available, naturally. Skill, passion and the imagination of an award-winning chef deliver a sensational menu of lasagne and more. Whether for a rich and comforting evening meal or a light and speedy lunch, Antonio’s menu is designed for any time of day.
Served in attractive individual ceramic dishes, the cheesy, béchamel layers come in a rainbow of flavours such as:
- ‘Butternut and Gorgonzola’ roasted butternut squash, Gorgonzola piccante, béchamel sauce, mozzarella and parmesan cheese £8.50
- ‘Tartufo Nero’, Ragu of British beef mince with mushrooms, black truffle, béchamel sauce, mozzarella and parmesan cheese £12
- ‘Vegana’ Egg-free pasta layers with tomato sauce, roasted veggies, vegan almond sauce £8
- ‘Iberica’ Roast chicken and Spanish chorizo, béchamel sauce, mozzarella, parmesan cheese £9
- ‘Genovese’ Slow-cooked beef and red onion ragu, smoked provola, mozzarella, parmesan and béchamel sauce comes piled high with crispy onions £12
- ‘Calabrese’ Ragu of Italian sausage, spicy N’duja, red onions, béchamel sauce £9
For variety, and a vicarious trip around the regional flavours of Italy guests can opt for the trio of lasagne a big cheesy helping of any three flavours from the menu £12
I tried a number of the flavours at the launch, and couldn’t choose which was the best, they were all equally as good.
For dessert, the layered theme continues albeit with a whimsical twist.
- Oreo ‘lasagna’ comes as layers of wispy, crispy puffed pastry sandwiched together with indulgent Oreo cream and topped with an Oreo cookie £6
- Nutella ‘lasagna’ is a moreish stack of folded sweet crepes melded together with rich Nutella and sprinkled with plenty of icing sugar £6
A pleasant surprise was meeting Chef Antonio again, I have eaten, and loved his food on several occasions in the past.
Chef Antonio cut his teeth at London’s iconic Caffe Caldesi before going on to win a Tatler Award and a San Pellegrino Award. He lives in West London with his wife, Antonella and son, Antonio ‘Junio’. He supports Brentford F.C. which is not what you’d expect from an Italian.
Next time you are in the City pay Lasagneria Italiana a visit, you will be delighted by this new and modern take on Lasagne.
1A Royal Exchange Buildings
London EC3 V 3LF
Bookings: 020 7929 1212