This Is One Of The Best Italian Restaurants In London, According To Stanley Tucci

Renowned for his starring roles in iconic Hollywood films like "The Devil Wears Prada" and "The Hunger Games," Stanley Tucci is no stranger to the public eye. However, his prolific acting career only sheds light on one aspect of his multifaceted personality. The Golden Globe-winning actor also has a deep-seated passion for food, having released two cookbooks in between film sets. While the actor maintains an appreciation for cuisines around the globe, Italian fare holds a special place at the table for Tucci given his Italian heritage. 

After moving from New York to London, Tucci has slowly been tasting his way through this U.K. city's exquisite Italian fare scene. However, few have been able to capture his heart quite like the Italian eatery, Sartoria. Located in the fashionable Mayfair district just around the block from Oxford Circus, Sartoria is one of the best in London's culinary landscape. According to a report by CNN, Tucci was so enthralled by the food at Sartoria that he even asked chef Francesco Mazzei to cater his and his wife Felicity Blunt's wedding in 2012, testifying to the extraordinary talent in this kitchen. Sartoria was even featured in season two, episode four of Tucci's documentary series, "Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy" that highlights Tucci's favorite destinations to eat. The episode follows Tucci through the city of London as he dines at some of his staple Italian gems. Next time you find yourself in the capital of England, consider making a reservation at this jewel of a restaurant.

Sartoria — An Italian emblem in London

One twirled forkful of the handmade pasta, and it isn't hard to see why Sartoria is one of Tucci's favorite London eateries. Part of what makes this modern Italian kitchen such an iconic restaurant in London's culinary scene is the fact that Chef Francesco Mazzei sits at the helm. The chef brings an authentic Italian perspective to the kitchen, after relocating to London from Calabria, Italy, in the 1990s. While the regional staples served at this menu surely resonate with Tucci, Mazzei and Tucci share another commonality: their Italian heritage rooted deep in Calabria. Interestingly, the restaurant's moniker translates to "tailor shop" in the Italian dialect, paying homage to the innovative creations behind the doors of this lavish kitchen.

The menu features classic favorites reigning from the south of Italy, selected by Chef Mazzei to honor the roots of his hometown. Lasagne pastachina and lobster tagliolini are among some of the innovative creations that pay homage to the authentic cuisine from Calabria, Italy. The Scottish scallops with nduja and cod with crispy potatoes and licorice are just a few of the dishes Tucci has tried at this extravagant eatery. Many plates feature unique ingredients that flourish on the Calabrian coastline, including licorice and nduja (a spicy cured pork sausage spread). Other house favorites prepared by Mazzei for Tucci include rose veal, which was served at the actor's wedding, and spaghetti puttanesca. Chef Mazzei is also credited as the first to introduce nduja into London's restaurant scene.

What makes Sartoria a stand-out eatery?

It's not just the white table cloths and comfy brown cushions that make Sartoria stand out as an iconic Italian emblem on Savile Row. Rather, the secret to Sartoria's success lies within its quality ingredients — starting with the homemade bread basket that features a wonderful assortment of sourdough, breadsticks, flatbread, and focaccia served with a side of olive oil. Complemented by a heated terrace brimming with lush plantation, an intricately carved cicchetti counter, and a fully-stocked wine cellar, Sartoria gives neighboring Mayfair restaurants a run for their money. An a la carte menu welcomes guests with a bold selection of antipasti (appetizers), like grilled octopus and the famous scallops with nduja that's a staple for Tucci. The menu slowly transitions into more hearty plates like homemade spaghetti with anchovies and the house favorite, Scottish lobster tagliolini — all which can be attributed to master culinary artist, Chef Francesco Mazzei. 

While exploring the best of London's Italian food scene in season two, episode four of Tucci's show, the actor explained that its chefs like Mazzei who immigrated from their Italian hometowns that have played an integral part in radically transforming Italian dining in London. Not only do they carry a wealth of experience cooking in Italy, but they are able to expand the city's authentic restaurant scene and pass on their knowledge of traditional cooking methods to those in London. Whether guests are hoping to brunch, lunch, or convene over drinks and dessert, Sartoria doesn't disappoint.