Spuntino. The name alone resonates with the type of crowd that finds a gritty New York style diner a welcomed addition to the side streets of bustling Soho. The industrialized, grungy sibling to the tremendously successful restaurants Polpo, Polpetto and Da Polpo, thanks in part to the brilliant minds of Russell Norman and Richard Beatty, is the kind of place where patiently queuing for hours just to taste the delectably creative menu is not only part of the allure, but part of the fun.
As patrons wait to sit at one of the coveted 25 spots at the pewter-topped bar, your olfactory sensors kick in, as the tattoo clad waiters, resembling the hipster spawns of Anthony Bourdain and Kat Von D, serve up small plates of truffled egg toast, meatball sliders and decadent mac’n’cheese, tantalizing your taste buds and sending your growling stomach into a state of shock. The décor evokes a nineteenth century machine-age Brooklyn – wire caged filament light bulbs highlight the gratuitously distressed walls of glazed brick and large rusted tin tiles, salvaged from a New York warehouse. The energetically charged, cooler-than-the-cool-kids atmosphere, set to the tunes of Black Keys mixed with psychedelic blues and soulful melodies, reminds guests why playfully fusing the best of comfort food laden American diners with modern European cuisine is one for the books. In this case, one for the audaciously trendy, foodie obsessed, put it on your bucket list of new London restaurants to try, books.
61 Rupert Street
Holly Boyle is a freelance writer based in London. She has been a contributing writer for Runway Magazine and Voda Magazine.