Frescobaldi’s touch of Tuscany on the cusp of Mayfair

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Frescobaldi is a new Italian restaurant that comes from an old Italian wine dynasty

A much better food critic then I once wrote that the best way to evaluate a restaurant is to order the fish. He argued that pretty much anyone can cook a cut of steak whereas fish required the freshest ingredients coupled with the deftest of touch. This critic is a very big player to my bit-part in the food and drinks world, so obviously it's advice that should be heeded. ButI have a slightly different approach - I go with the maître d's recommendation. My rationale being that nowadays restaurants know that we’re coming (or when we're there) and rather than becoming a restaurant bore that meticulously dissects a menu before ordering (read, most food bloggers), give them a chance to offer you what they are doing best.

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Frescobaldi is a new Italian restaurant that comes from an old Italian wine dynasty. And what they have always done best has been wine and art – especially the former. So it comes as no surprise that when we visited their first UK restaurant, that the wine on offer, and modern art on view, was superb. The restaurant located a skip off Regent Street on the Mayfair side, is very modern but through great use of lighting and interior design, almost cosy. The diners were a mix of wealthy tourists and wealthy locals. And us.

The maître d' recommended the Bistecca alla Fiorentina con verdure arrosto, or T-bone steak with roasted vegetables for two as our main, with the Ox-tail ravioli with pecorino and Gnocchi with mushrooms as our shared starters. The pasta was superb – rich beef ravioli with the sharpness of the pecorino, and the earthy mushrooms and gnocchi whetting and nearly satisfying our appetites from the start. The Bistecca all Fiorentina is a favourite of a friend of mine and his Italian wife who live in Tuscany. The first time i tried it in Florence it was great. This was as good or better. Rich, rare beef that dropped off the bone and melted in your mouth. It’s not often that I’m unable to finish a dish, but this was one of those times. For dessert we tried the tiramisu – a great dessert often done badly. Not this time. Rich and creamy with only the hint of liqueur. Just how I like it.

The maître d' was delighted that we took his recommendations. So were we. Perhaps I'm not a great food critic. But I'm a very well fed one.

From * to *****

Wining and dining ****

Serving and pouring ****

Romancing and flirting ****

15 New Burlington Place, London W1S 2HX

020 3693 3435

http://www.frescobaldirestaurants.com/

@frescobaldi_UK