By Esin Huseyin
Having lived in North London my whole life, I hate to say it, but crossing the river is a rare thing – part of the ‘new year, new me’ mantra is to try and amend this. Most of the restaurants that I have discovered have been in the heart and soul of the Capital, but I never truly realised what I’m missing out on. Clapham.
For all of you who live down South, you’re probably all staring at your screens in astonishment at how I can run a blog dedicated to London, without…I guess truly experiencing all of London. Rub those smug grins off your face, I’ve finally realised the error of my ways.
Once you step out of Clapham Common tube station, you’re in the heart of gastro pubs, chain and independent restaurants. I stepped out pretty early in the evening, so the full dinner crowd wasn’t out, but if a restaurant is heaving at 6pm, you know you’re on to a good one. So, let me introduce you to Eco Restaurant.
A minimal, inviting and intimate Italian restaurant which boasts a bright orange wood-fired pizza oven. When I entered the restaurant there wasn’t an empty seat, and not even 10 minutes after we sat down there was a queue at the door. Taking a quick look around, it seemed that it was the chosen spot for dates, families, and for large groups who wished to dine.
Now, to say I was hangry was an understatement, was it too much to order a pizza and a pasta dish? Not listening to the voice of gluttony I however opted for the following:
- Antipasto misto: Mixed cured meats, San Daniele, carved ham,scamorza, olives and rocket
- Goat’s cheese and smoked red pepper pizza: with spinach and fresh coriander (I opted for no spinach)
The staff are incredibly warm and inviting, and this hospitality oozes from all of them! You have the option of sizing up on the antipasto platter, when asking how generous the portion was our waiter replied, “it depends how hungry you are”. Challenge accepted – larger size it is. The larger size would be perfect for three to share, or for two hungry people. Cured meats, bread, cheese and olives. Perfection. Unfortunately, there isn’t anything incredibly exciting about these platters, but the variety of meats was great, and it was all fresh.
The pizza size was generous, albeit a lot smaller than Homeslice and there was a beautiful hint of smokiness which wasn’t overpowering, but they got the cheese to pizza ratio right. There is nothing worse than ordering a pizza which features cheese, and you find yourself staring down with a hungry stomach
and a heavy heart at a meager three pieces of cheese. I can safely say, this was a whole block of goat’s cheese. I would sincerely like to say thank you from all of the cheese lovers around the world.
If you’re looking to venture away from the heavy footfall of West and East London, then why not let yourself be warmly welcomed by the Eco team.