Saturday, September 10th , 2016
The original Enoteca Turi was a fixture in Putney for many years, serving good Italian food and having an unusually thoughtful wine list – its owner has a WSET diploma so knows his way around a cellar. After a rent hike the restaurant shut up shop and moved to Pimlico, where I am pleased to say it seems to be flourishing. The pasta is good here, shown in a spaghettini with crab, tomato and chilli, the risotto seemed to me made from scratch and had pleasing texture, and the fish dish that we tried was accurately cooked. Prices are a touch high but the food is of a higher standard than most London Italian restaurants.
Beijing Dumpling in Lisle Street advertises itself well by having a little kitchen in the front of the restaurant facing the street in which chefs roll out dumplings. With some Chinatown places buying in their dim sum from catering suppliers, it is comforting to know that at least the ones served here are made fresh on the premises. The dining room is very basic and has service to match, though prices are moderate. I have to say that the dim sum that I tried were pleasant rather than particularly special – the texture of the xiao long bao was rather disappointing compared to the best of the breed, such as the terrific version you can eat at A. Wong. However if you are in Chinatown then you could certainly do worse.
Italian cuisine is highly regional, though you would never guess that from most Italian restaurants in London. Totide is an exception, featuring the cooking and produce of Emilia Romagna, the area of northern Italy centred in Bologna. Since this is the area that brought us balsamic vinegar, Parmesan and tortellini it is an excellent place to dive into regional cuisine, with ingredients brought over from Italy weekly. I was particularly impressed with two pasta dishes, which were as good as you are likely to find anywhere in the capital. Desserts were of a lower standard, but at a modest price point this restaurant deserves more attention than it will likely receive in this quiet street in Putney.