40 Dean Street

Italian Food with Charm.

40 dean street starterIt’s been more than a decade since my last visit to 40 Dean Street but it’s as good as I remember – and perhaps even better!

Soho is my neighbourhood of choice for interesting independent restaurants. They are for the most part small and characterful, and 40 Dean Street has that profile. It is warm and cosy with a decor giving nods to classy English tea rooms, traditional Italian restaurants and a corner of a stately home. It is charming and eclectic.

The service here is just as noteworthy as the restaurant. The staff are well-informed and enthusiastic. 40 Dean Street is a family-owned establishment, and it does exude that customer care ethos.

But it’s likely the visitor is here for the food. It doesn’t disappoint. The classic Italian dishes here are a delight and offer something for every taste and appetite. We started with the Italian antipasto platter which was a selection of cured Italian meats and cheeses with a garnish of cornichons. A simple array and one which I would order every day (should I have a flat over a shop in Dean Street), along with a glass of Sangiovese.

Attention to detail

40 Dean Street PorkMy guest ordered the Slow-Roast Pork Belly with apple puree, black cabbage and creamy mashed potatoes. This was a picture on the plate and composed with attention to detail. Beautiful and flavoursome with melting meat and sweet, crispy black cabbage.

I chose Chicken Milanese, and this was a substantial plate of breaded chicken breast topped with a heaping portion of spaghetti pomodoro. This must surely be one of the most popular menu items here.

Vanilla Panna Cotta with mixed berry compote was my companion’s dessert. Custardy cream was dressed in luscious red fruit. As with everything at 40 Dean Street, this was a generous and delicious presentation.

Affogato with Amaretto and vanilla ice cream was light and a perfect dinner finale. This combination of hot coffee and ice cream sets one up for the inevitable trip home.

40 Dean Street has flourished for a couple of decades and it’s easy to see why: its ambiance is inviting and tempts one to linger. Its food is enticing and well-crafted. That combination demands many happy returns!

Visit 40 Dean Street here