Ventian-inspired chain from Russell Norman, serving easy dishes in a fun environment
This is my second Polpo having sampled Spuntino, and maybe it was the time of the holiday but this was a far better atmosphere and seemed slightly more spacious inside. As with the Polpo Covent Garden which I have passed by many times, the interior has been faithfully designed to resemble a typical Venetian, local eatery. Wonderful atmosphere, rustic feel and some interesting tapas style comfort dishes to choose from over an Apperol Spritz if you want to get in to a Ventian mood.
As with all casual environments, it is a double-edged sword – it is great for a genuinely bustling atmosphere (which it absolutely is here and one if its key strengths), but the service can border on a little too casual as well. Thankfully, this only happened slightly and in the main was attentive.
The food options had, served in tapas style (as you are recommended to order 4-5 dishes) were on the whole, pleasing. In the main, I wouldn’t describe them as intricate dishes, but the white crab linguine and flank steak with truffled cream were both the stars of the food show and indeed a good ‘hit’ was gained on these. With a 50cl of a doable Chardonnay and a classic Venetian Apperol Spritz each, the bill was a just about acceptable (approx) £38 each for the three at the table, bearing in mind the more finely executed Michelin starred set menus I know there are in comparison, for around the same price with drinks.
All in all though, this is an obviously successful place with originality and social buzz as its key fortés and somewhere to go for that when you are peckish. A safe bet for food and a safer bet for a decent occasion as the main factor when all considered.
Food Grade: 70%
Location (Click google logo for directions)