Over several Italian-style courses (antipasti, primi, secondi) my personal favourites included the pizzette; a delicate pizza cooked the Tuscan way, with a light, crunchy base, the burratina with sweet Sicilian tomatoes and lashings of basil oil and the homemade bucatini pasta; thick, chewy tubes in a hearty broth with generous chunks of lobster.
The showstopper, though, was the 28 day aged ‘double sirloin’. This is a sharing steak that has been sourced from the Scottish Highlands. It’s as close as you’ll find to a Florentina Steak, having been reared in similar ways as the cows in Tuscany (minus some music and massaging). The meat was tender, well-flavoured and topped with a zingy salsa verde.
Desserts were an irresistibly creamy white espresso semifreddo and a silky buttermilk panna cotta.
Bernardi’s well-stocked bar is nothing short of impressive. There’s a page dedicated to Italian aperitivi – including inventive takes on the Negroni – as well as a great selection of premium spirits, craft beer, cider, Limoncello…you name it, it’s probably there. The wine list is just as broad. There are bubbles, reds and whites spanning several of Italy’s regions, with all budgets considered.
The cocktail menu deserves a look. The restaurant’s fruity take on a Martini (fresh pressed apples, sorrel, vodka, elderflower and prosecco) is tangy and refreshing. It’s the perfect dinner kick-starter.
You can’t go wrong with Bernardi’s. It’s a reliable all-rounder with unlimited Italian charm and some added London edginess. Head here for fuss-free date nights, celebratory cocktails and shopping pit stops.
Bernardi’s – Where and How?
Bernardi’s is located 62 Seymour Street, London W1H 5BN. For reservations, call 020 3826 7940, email [email protected] or visit www.bernardis.co.uk.
The restaurant is open all day, all week for breakfast, lunch, dinner and weekend brunch.