Let’s put this out there first: Bancone has generated quite a high level of excitement in the 45 days (at the time of writing) it’s been open, and now that I’ve been I understand that it’s not just hyperbole. The beauty of the food here is in its simplicity. Fresh pasta made onsite, right in front of your very eyes in fact, then merged with wonderfully flavoured sauces and ragus – some of which have been slow cooked and reduced for 10 hours or more.
This bright, airy space in Covent Garden was opened by restaurateurs William Ellner and David Ramsey; the former’s family opened Joanna’s in Crystal Palace in 1978. Potted plants and pasta-filled jars add nice touches to the minimalist decor, while the chefs at work in the kitchen is the focal point.
There’s a rotating selection of antipasti for starters with the lip-smacking honeyed garlic foccacia and the moreish Cannon & Cannon cured meats the standouts.
When it comes to the pasta, trust in the skillful hands of Michelin star-trained head chef, Louis Korovilas – formerly of Locanda Locatelli and Pied à Terre. With gluten free options also available, it really is a tough decision to make, such is the appeal of each mouthwatering option. The spicy pork ragu with pecorino and tagliatelle is (we were told) one of the most popular orders. Deep flavours with just a subtle kick to the spice really add depth to this dish. The slow cooked 10-hour oxtail ragu with pappardelle is perfectly rich, without being too overbearing in its strength.
The real proof in the excellence here is in the fact that my plus one for the evening returned to Bancone just a few days later with her workmates, such was the impression made on her. I’m sure it will leave an impression on you too.
For more information visit bancone.co.uk