L’Artigiano opened its doors in July, bringing a dash of passion for the traditional Italian cuisine with a modern twist to the heart of Chelsea.
Executive Chef Ignacio Ruggiero began his career in Michelin-starred restaurant Ru Mauri in Salerno, Italy at just age 19 and was most recently sous chef at Maydair’s The Met. He came across as a truly charming, well-knowledged chef who had a flair for culinary creativity. His dishes are reflective of his love of seasonal flavours and the flavour combinations Ignacio uses are a mirror reflecting his personal story relating to his Italian Venezuelan roots.
Ruggiero says: “My philosophy is simple: I use the best possible ingredients to create dishes that touch the emotions and emphasise seasonal flavours and excite the palate. Every item on the menu is meticulously sourced and each plate is designed to intrigue and excite our diners.”
We were lucky enough to sample an exclusive preview of some of his new dishes being brought to the menu including an absolutely delectable Red and Black Tortelli, Stuffed with Native Lobster, Bisque, Mixed Herbs, Parsley Sponge. This was such a unique dish, the tortellini was stuffed with lobster, it was really something quite special and what an utter treat for the eyes. Alongside this, we sampled a delectable wine pairing, which really was a match made in heaven.
The wine pairing was one of the best I’ve had, as they thoughtfully curated wine cellar stocks over 150 top quality Italian wines including 30 available to enjoy by the glass from Barolo to Amarone as well us more unusual labels sourced from smaller vineyards in Italy.
Let’s discuss the star of the show! I could have eaten this for breakfast, lunch and dinner – Pan-Fried Red Mullet, Samphire, Baby Asparagus with Cold Asparagus Water. This dish was cooked tableside, flamed next to us. The flavours were so fresh, I felt like I’d been transported to an island off the coast of Italy. This was followed by a beautifully light tiramisu.
When dining at L’Artiango, there are plenty of options including a set lunch menu; a la carte, and an eight-course tasting menu with optional wine pairing. The a la carte menu features four antipasti including Tonno Sashimi Vitellato (Veal, Fresh Sashimi Tuna). There are five pasta dishes including Ruggiero’s signature Gnocchi all’Amatriciana and Tortelli stuffed with native lobster and four main courses including Pancetta di Maialino (Slow cooked baby pork belly).
L’Artigiano’s Founder and manager Leandro Longo’s ambition is to create a contemporary fine dining restaurant with impeccable service and relaxing atmosphere. Longo is a lifelong restaurateur who grew up in Italy and has been restaurant manager at Harrods, La Caricatura and Saddlers both in Mayfair. He established his first restaurant L’Artigiano Pasta Restaurant on Old Street in 2015 followed by launching another restaurant in Mexico. He has now returned to the city he calls home with his vision for an Italian fine dining restaurant.
Although Covid-19 delayed the opening of this gem, the team pivoted to offer fresh homemade pasta and did an incredible job to reduce covers (24) to allow for social distancing. Space itself is perfect for dinner with friends, family or a special occasion – it’s truly wonderful and the service couldn’t be better.
Don’t miss your chance to dine somewhere truly unique – L’Artigiano is just that.
A: 343 Fulham Rd, Chelsea, London SW10 9TW
T: 020 3972 9848
Written by Kaya Cheshire for Luxuria Lifestyle London and International