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Taberna Etrusca (Restaurant)

Picture of Taberna Etrusca in City of London, London

9-11 Bow Churchyard, City of London, London, EC4M 9DQ
Cuisine: Italian Average Price: £30.00 excl. wine
Tel: 020 7248 5552 | Email to Taberna Etrusca | Transport: Mansion House | Write review

Taberna Etrusca Review

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Best for: alfresco dining; fresh seafood; a sense of history.

Great: at being established.

Twinings est. 1706; Notts County est. 1862; Jack Daniels est. 1875; Coca Cola est. 1892; Nike est. 1972; Microsoft est. 1975.

Can we assume that the addition of that small abbreviation, ‘est’, translates to quality? Notts County is the oldest running football club but that’s their only claim; they sit happily in League One for the most part, and cause no reason for fear to those top quality clubs in the Premier League. Businesses attach the foreword ‘established’ to their titles even if it’s merely three-years-young. The word must carry a signifier of quality or else, I beg, what’s the point?

Taberna Etrusca seems to weight much importance on its legacy. It’s the first thing you’re introduced to when you visit their website, and it’s on their menus: ‘Taberna Etrusca est. 1967’. Does this say it is anything other than 44 years old? Is it important or is it a liability? It seems these days most worth is laid on change; we all want the newest, latest thing. Lunching at this Italian restaurant in Bow Lane in the City of London, I found out.

On the approach to the venue I came across a statue of Captain John Smith, one of the first settlers in America. He’s old, the statue is old, the history is old. It is relevant, important, interesting; it has purpose and is woven into our heritage. I also notice the St Mary-le-Bow church - another site of importance where prayer and worship have been offered for over a thousand years – just before I reach the venue. Supported by two well-established landmarks, a good omen for Taberna Etrusca?

It’s one of those rare sunny afternoons, so I opt to sit outside in the courtyard. I’m impressed; the cobbled floor, the weathered brickwork of the buildings that envelop the small alfresco space, the hanging baskets filled with sweet smelling flora, and the wooden beams that form the narrow corridor arches, it all screams olden day Tuscany, not modern day London, and I like it. It’s peaceful, and for some reason my lips twitch into a smile.

Instead of wooden utensils of old, the tables white linen is laid with heavy silverware. In this instance, I prefer the new to the old. Cutting my perfectly simple, but notably tasty, asparagus wrapped in Parma ham with cutlery whittled from local oak would prove tricky. And the young man opposite me may struggle eating his “buttery, soft and light” fresh crab and avocado salad with tomato coulis, with anything other than a knife and fork.

Head chef Giorgio Puddu is master of traditional fare (note the definition of traditional is existing in, or as part of, a tradition; long-established), and the mains of spaghetti tossed in garlic, chilli and oil, with fresh crab and roasted cherry tomatoes, and the Dutch veal escalope with a white wine and lemon and parsley sauce, have my guest and I nodding in agreement that the time-honoured dishes served at Taberna Etrusca beat the contemporary fare of Italian chain Prezzo (est 2000).

So far, yes, Taberna Etrusca’s 44 year existence is proving to be of importance; the food, the surroundings, the attentive staff who have such passion for the experience they offer – passion that could be rivalled only by a family-run restaurant, tucked away in the hilly town of Cortona, serving the same spaghetti and sauce it has for the past 80 years – and the general feeling you are in a place that has been loved since before you were born. All are of such high quality thanks to its age.

Its timeless quality follows through into the main restaurant, which exudes a classic trattoria style, with tiled floor, beamed ceiling and textured white walls. Ferrari posters – a brand established in 1929 and to this day the epitome of excellence in its field - cement the feeling of national pride and the importance of the knowledge of tradition. Taberna Etrusca, like Ferrari, sticks to what it knows, and to what it’s good at and there’s no shame in that.

In Taberna Etrusca’s case I can conclude that the use of ‘established’ does translate to great quality; it is something good and reliable, something that has seen through the decades because of its loyalty to tradition, and something that will no doubt continue to age, only becoming more and more established in itself and in the minds of its happy diners.

But even those who have been established for so long need to keep up with the times, and, as such, after 44 years, Taberna Etrusca is now serving dinner for the first time too. Delicious lunches and dinner? I think I can get on board with that new development.

...read more

Faye Armstrong

Customer Reviews for Taberna Etrusca

Average (based on 1 votes): 1 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of Taberna Etrusca.

“A lovely little al fresco court setting down a quaint little hidden lane. On a beautifully sunny day in The City this is a fantastic Italian restaurant for business meetings or Italian wine-induced boozey afternoons. Excellent wine list, jovial service, simple and fresh ingredients, no pretense.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
The Restaurant Hunter, London (3 years 1 months 24 days ago)

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Taberna Etrusca Opening Hours

Monday: 11:45am - 3:30pm Friday: 11:45am - 10:00pm
Tuesday: 11:45am - 10:00pm Saturday: Closed
Wednesday: 11:45am - 10:00pm Sunday: Closed
Thursday: 11:45am - 10:00pm    

Additional Information

Taberna Etrusca Food & Drinks

  • Cuisine Type: Italian
  • Average Price: £30.00 excl. wine

Taberna Etrusca Food Menu

Head Chef, Giorgio Puddu is a master of traditional Italian cuisine and knows exactly what his customers want: pasta, simple classic meat and fish dishes and desserts from a groaning trolley, laden with freshly-made puddings.

Menu staples often include several emblematic dishes, such as Spaghetti Enzo, slices of fillet steak with garlic, chilli and fresh tomato tossed in spaghetti; and Medaglioni Di Bue Etrusca, beef medallions cooked with Italian smoked bacon, croutons and Madeira sauce.

Updated 12/05/2011

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Daily Special Set menu 2 courses at £17 per person

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Events and other great things going on at Taberna Etrusca

The private dining facilities offer the perfect environment for either business entertaining or celebrations of any kind. Taberna’s private room features wi-fi access, projector and screen if needed.

Updated 17/05/2011

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Venue ID: 16361

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