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Trullo Review

Lizzie Mabbott stops in for lunch and is pleasantly surprised with what she finds

Written by . Published on July 12th 2011.

Trullo Review

Upon entering Trullo, I was concerned about whether I would be glared at, reprimanded or chided. I had, after all, cancelled my reservation with short notice twice, and now I was turning up late. But as I stepped inside, a smiling waitress welcomed me warmly, and I was sat at a banquette in front of starched, white tablecloth, the sun gently warming my back.

Steamed Isle of Wight asparagus, last of the season, was served with a small pot of warm, creamy parmesan dip that was completely addictive. Had I had a bucket of it and a loaf of sourdough, I’d have been happy for the rest of the day.

Many similarities have been drawn between Trullo and Zucca; a natural comparison as they both serve reasonably priced Italian food, though they are located on opposite sides of the river. Having dined at both, it would be difficult to come to a conclusion.

Aspargus with parmesan fondueAspargus with parmesan fondue

We kicked lunch off with a reviving Aperol spritz (£7) that was so orange my companion thought it was a soft drink. Orders taken, we were left to chat and gaze idly for a touch too long, considering the room wasn’t yet full. Steamed Isle of Wight asparagus (£8), last of the season, was served with a small pot of warm, creamy parmesan dip that was completely addictive. Had I had a bucket of it and a loaf of sourdough, I’d have been happy for the rest of the day.

Courgette and brown shrimp taglioliniCourgette and brown shrimp tagliolini

Grilled quail with a faro and radish salad (£7) was Middle Eastern in flavour and alarmingly large in size, though the meat was deliciously gamey and perfectly cooked. A shared dish of brown shrimp and courgette tagliolini (£7.50) was bathed in butter, the salty seafood seasoning every springy al dente strand of pasta. A more than ample portion to be shared by two, I’m of the opinion that one mustn’t visit an Italian restaurant without having tried their pasta; it’s just not right.

So onto the mains, my choice of onglet (£17) is generally classed as offal. Located by the diaphragm, near the kidneys, it has a slightly gamey flavour and it must be cooked to rare/medium rare otherwise it becomes tough as old boots. Trullo stepped up to the plate. Each slice was as tender as butter, flakes of salt upon it seasoning each mouthful. An aubergine-heavy caponata provided a rich, silky texture contrast, while shredded lettuce added crunch. 

Whole plaiceWhole plaice

Across the table, whole fried plaice (£16.50) was a beautiful beast. The flesh pulled away from the bones with little give. Sliced, frittered artichoke sat atop some unremarkable cannellini beans. Stuffed to the brim, I was glad our waitress advised against any potato or greenery sides.

An enlivening white peach granita (£3.50) was sweet and refreshing. Even better still, the honeycomb and stem ginger ice-cream (£3.50) provided a perfect finish. A strong espresso (£1.50), complete with pistachio biscotti, was a life-giver. At around £50 a head with service, plus a carafe of white wine, Trullo wasn’t a cheap lunch, but for the quality of the food they served us in relaxed surroundings, it was a worthy treat.


Rating:             16 / 20

Breakdown:       8/10 food
                        5/5 service
                        3/5 ambience


300 Saint Paul's Road
London N1 2LH


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Venues are rated against the best examples of their kind: fine dining against the best fine dining, cafes against the best cafes. Following on from this the scores represent: 1-5 saw your leg off and eat it, 6-9 get a DVD, 10-11 if you must, 12-13 if you’re passing,14-15 worth a trip,16-17 very good, 17-18 exceptional, 19 pure quality, 20 perfect. More than 20: We get carried away.

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