Mamma Mia! When it comes to food, few things rank higher on my list than a good plate of delicious home-made pasta coupled with a glass of great wine. So a chance to visit the newly opened Italian hotspot, Monty’s Wine Bar & Restaurant based close to London’s Oxford Street, was just to good to turn down…
Upon entering, larger than life manager and Sommelier, Antonio gave us a warm welcome, guiding us over to a lovely booth with soft and very comfy seating.
If like me and sometimes get a little overwhelmed when having pages and pages of dishes to choose from, you’ll be pleased with the streamlined one-sheet menu at Monty’s.
To start, there’s a tempting selection of Cichetti, as well as Charcuterie which features a host of hams that have been handpicked from the farms of Italy and a selection of specialities. We opted for the Calamari Fritti with Tartare sauce, Scallops with Asparagus and also the Foccacia and Carasau bread.
The Calamari was fresh, with a lovely light batter. The Scallops were cooked to perfection and as for the Foccacia, Mamma Mia! All home made, it literally melted onto my tongue and despite vowing before my arrival to continue my bread amnesty, I quickly told myself that everything in moderation is fine – particularly when it tastes this good!
For the mains both my guest and I were torn between the Tagliatelle Beef Ragu and Parmesan and the Grilled Veal T-Bone Steak with Roast New Potatoes. As we’d both agreed that it would be rude to visit talian restaurant and not sample the home made pasta (coupled with the fact that it’s one of my favourite dishes), we decided to order one main each and simply share them between us.
The Tagliatelle was beautiful (particularly when washed down with the Syrah Rose Weninger 2011 wine which was handpicked by renowned sommelier Antonio) and I will admit had me wishing I’d had the whole main to myself. However, once the Veal arrived I was thankful to have the opportunity to try it and enjoy the best of both worlds. Again the meat was flavoursome and beautifully cooked.
As we savoured the last morsel, although we were sad that we’d devoured it so quickly, this sentiment quickly dissipated when we saw the selection of desserts on offer.
As well as being beautifully presented, the Vanilla Panna Cotta With Wild Berries was rich and creamy yet light at the same time (sometimes Panna Cotta can feel heavy, but not so at Monty’s as stealing a generous spoonful or two from my dinner guest confirmed that this was utterly delicious).
Being a lover of all things cakes and pastry related, I opted for the Amalfi Lemon Tart. This indulgently buttery delight had a good balance of lemon and the scoop of vanilla ice cream I ordered on the side
was the perfect accompaniment. Naughty yes, but definitely a nice treat that’s worth saving room for!
We very much enjoyed our experience at Monty’s. It wasn’t just the food that was pleasing – the price was refreshingly reasonable for a central London restaurant too.
Most starters were priced at £5.00 and mains ranged from £11-24.
The menu lends itself well for all occasions – whether it’s a business lunch, after work drinks with a light snack or an evening meal. So if I
find myself on a shopping trip in Oxford Street or out with friends and am in need of some Italian culinary replenishment, a visit to Monty’s for some home made pasta (and of course the fantastic Foccacia) would certainly be a good place to relax and refuel.
Monty’s Wine Bar & Restaurant, 52 Wells Street
London W1T 3PR
020 7637 2666
For more info visit www.montyswinebar.com