I’ll be honest here: I love carbs, and I love meat. And I especially love carbs and meat when they’re drenched in delicious, creamy sauces. But my god do I hate food envy. So, as you can imagine, the concept of ‘Italian Sharing Tapas’ is sickeningly-appealing to me. As such, I was pretty excited to try out the recently-opened Fumo in Covent Garden, which promises that very concept.
The Venue and Ambience
Located on St Martin’s Lane amidst the buzz of Central London, Fumo represents the latest edition to the luxurious San Carlo restaurant family, known for their sleek, tasty Italian dining offerings. Decorated in classic fine-dining beige and whites, Fumo has a clean, swish look not unlike its sister sites. The white leather chairs and matching white tables ensure a quintessentially-exclusive style, complemented by the other furniture, features and quirky light fixtures.
It’s a busy restaurant, so they benefit from a natural buzz, but with that they also suffer slightly with a somewhat hectic feel, especially if you're seated in the middle tables. Less of a place for quaint, quiet dinners, but more of a restaurant for a slightly more energetic meal; Fumo naturally attracts a relatively mixed crowd.
The Food and Drink
First thing’s first, the menu at Fumo is massive. With every Italian delicacy from pizza to gnocchi on offer, the trick here isn’t finding something you like, it’s finding something you don’t. Each priced around £5-£12 you’re encouraged to order 5-6 dishes between two diners, giving you plenty of opportunity for a little experimenting.
On recommendation, we opted for a selection of signature dishes, including the seabass, the arancini with ragu and the oozing ravioli pecorino. The portions are substantial and the cooking screams authenticity, from the rich flavours to the slick presentation of each plate. On top of a bottle of fruity house white wine, we also plumped for two desserts – the tiramisu and panna cotta (both delicious) – and the bill came out at just shy of £100 all in, so £50pp. Weighing up the location, the alcohol and the sheer amount of plates we got through on the night; the price is neither higher or lower than you’d expect from a restaurant of this calibre.
Bolshie in every sense of the word, Fumo is a welcomed addition to Central London. It’s lively, the menu is expansive and the food is delicious. If you’re after a slightly different take on authentic Italian cuisine; this new central London foodie spot is more than a safe bet.