27-year-old restauranteur Andrew Macleod, founder of critically acclaimed craft pasta restaurant, Emilia’s in St Katharine Docks is now adding to his pasta portfolio with a second location opening in Aldgate in February 2019.
Spearheading the pasta trend in the capital, Emilia’s was one of the first on the scene and has quickly earned a reputation as one of the best pasta restaurants in London. Born and bred in West London, Andrew’s interest in bringing great Italian crafted pasta is keenly demonstrated via his pasta pilgrimage across Italy prior to opening Emilia’s. Following extensive visits to some of Italy’s most famed regions, Andrew spent 18 months learning from local Italian chefs who extolled an extraordinary passion for cooking recipes passed down through the generations. Emilia’s carbonara is an example of this; made the Northern Italian way using whole eggs to make it a little lighter and pecorino preferred to Parmesan along with plenty of pancetta and black pepper. Emilia’s twist on the carbonara is to use bucatini pasta (think spaghetti with a hole going through the middle) which ensures the creamy sauce is distributed perfectly and captured in every mouthful.
Emilia’s Aldgate offers a succinct selection of seven pasta dishes which Andrew (a self-confessed perfectionist) has fine-tuned to pay worthy homage to the original dishes from various regions in Italy, along with careful pairing of pasta shapes with sauces – the weight, texture and size of the pasta should complement the sauce. Signature dishes include their famed four hour slow-cooked Bolognese, made heartier and creamier with fresh béchamel, and casarecce pasta paired with a velvety walnut and chestnut mushroom sauce. Emilia’s homemade basil pesto with casarecce is a nod to family tradition in Genoa – a heart-warming dish of pasta layered with pesto and filled to the brim with parmesan, considered by many as arguably the best in London.
Emilia’s Aldgate will be able to extend its current offering since a bigger kitchen will allow for a revolving specials board that will showcase new dishes never seen before but without sacrificing the core favorites which will of course be available so yes, those delicious fried parmesan balls will be back!
The carefully curated menu is made using only the purest ingredients, with some soured exclusively from a handful of local and sustainable suppliers in Italy and the UK; Laudemio Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Fattoria Di Maiano and ‘Pasture for Life’ certified 100% grass fed organic beef from Bristol. Niche suppliers also play a part including artisanal lemonade, Lurisia Gazzosa, normally only found in Italy. A short wine list is made up of predominantly Italian vintages such as Conviviale Primitivo Del Salento from Apuglia and Il Cascione Camillona from Piedmont. A handful of classic Italian cocktails evokes a quintessential piazza experience thanks to an ultimate Aperol Spritz and a must-have Negroni. A unique Italian craft beer selection is also available, and to finish your meal a coffee sourced from ‘The Roasting’, a small independent Italian roaster with a coffee shop in Victoria.
Taking inspiration from the beautiful Emilia Romagna region of Italy, Emilia’s Aldgate boasts
55 covers in an inviting, vibrant and whimsical setting. As you step into Emilia’s you will feel like you are in a countryside workshop in Italy, where talented craftsmen that are making fresh pasta. Cotti D’italia terracotta tiles offset the earthy crafted rustic terracotta plastered walls, balanced with industrial black metal details and white carrara marble surround a tiled terracotta feature bar that generates a warm and carefree space to meet, drink and dine. An open kitchen allows diners to watch the chefs at work, providing an engaging and fun food experience where the guest is part of the journey from start to finish. A manned pasta counter presents itself at the window of the restaurant giving 360 views of the handcrafted pasta being made and is a site to enjoy both from the street, and as a diner in the restaurant alike. Guests will also be able to dine alfresco with 24 outdoor seats as well as a communal counter to enjoy an aperitif with friends.
Emilia’s Crafted Pasta
77 Alie Street, London, E1 8NH