It’s a bold interior designer who decorates a Sardinian seafood restaurant in stark white with nary a drop of Mediterranean blue, but then Olivomare is a bold venture, serving modern fish dishes that are adventurous in their presentation but old-school in quality of produce and flavours – a winning combination.
Sadly, the space itself, and the service, are less successful: it’s hot and noisy, tables are far too close to one other, and initial unfriendly service created a sour note that could only be sweetened with good food. Luckily, it was. A grilled squid starter seemed pricey at £12, but was deliciously sweet, perfectly charred, and big enough for two to share. Spaghetti with half a lobster was equally well executed, the pasta perfectly al dente and continuing to soak up the rich tomato, garlic and lobster juices on the plate.
Handmade lorighittas pasta with vongole and grey mullet roe missed the mark, though – the roe added an unwelcome breadcrumb texture to the pasta, and an overpowering flavour that killed the delicacy of the shellfish (a meagre portion). At the kinds of prices Olivomare charges to its clearly well-heeled clientele, a handful more clams would have gone a long way in tempting us to return.