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A tiny Italian restaurant on a Richmond side street.
The strong Italian influence in Richmond may be understated to the casual observer – major chains (of course) dot the one-way system, but the town’s streets positively hum with independent pizza restaurants, delis and gelato shops. Here, squeezed into a bijou alley just off the green, sits a great little find that the locals only whisper about for fear of not getting their regular table.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that you’ve strolled into a tea room on first impression – bare wood floors, flock wallpaper and ornate seating for no more than 14, you’ve been in bigger sitting rooms. Only the warm greeting from the Sardinian owner stops you going back outside to check.
Starters, just the right side of £10, are big enough to make you worry that perhaps you shouldn’t have ordered a main as well. Beef meatballs, with just enough nduja to leave a warmth, are stand-out, with huge ravioli or extremely cheesy parmigiana close behind. Pasta dishes, just the wrong side of £10, thankfully come the same size as starters. The gnocchi with gorgonzola and walnuts was, literally, melt-in-the-mouth – but it’s all fresh, home-made, seasonal and authentic. Whatever you choose, you won’t be disappointed.
9 Paved Court
|Price:||Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £65.|
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