A wonderful Italian to experience
Category : Restaurant
| Cuisine : Italian
Address : 40-41 Rathbone Place, Fitzrovia, London, W1T 1HX, UNITED KINGDOM - Directions
Web : www.bigmammagroup.com/en/trattorias/circolo-popolare
Opening Times : Mon-Fri: 8am-11.15am, 12pm-2.45pm, 5.45pm-10.30pm, Sat: 9am-3.45pm, 6pm-10.30pm, Sun: 9am-3.45pm, 6pm-10.15pm
Closest Tube : Totenham Court Road
You may not have heard the name but it's likely you've seen Circolo Popolare on a screen of some sort, whether it be Instagram or a news article. The second London outing has marked the Big Mamma group as one of France's most popular imports. They've gone from strength to strength, building on Gloria's already extra vibe to create a restaurant that is truly spectacular, all in the heart of Fitzrovia on Rathbone Street. When we arrived at 6pm on a Tuesday, there was already an extensive queue.
The dining room is something to marvel over. The sheer numbers going into it are staggering, and one could easily get an army staggeringly drunk with over 20,000 backlit bottles of liquor on display throughout the 28 cover restaurant. The ceiling has been festooned with foliage and fairy lights and there are little televisions throughout the restaurant playing mesmerizingly naff Italian dance and cookery shows, as well as some monolithic cakes on display. In short, it is built for Instagram and built very well indeed.
We kicked off the meal with an eye-wateringly elegant bottle of Pelassa Barolo, which bedded down nicely with our starters. Of these we were especially smitten with the tempura courgette flowers served with a whipped butter, and even more so by an outrageously outsized burrata with a heart of pesto served with ineffably crisp pane carasau. From here we hopscotched to a pizza regina (switching in a red sauce) and then the mind-bendingly beautiful truffle Mafalda. A trip wouldn't be complete without one of the giant desserts (although maybe share) and we were thoroughly satiated after a lemon tart with a stratospherically high quiff of whipped cream and an equally milky tiramisu.
Circolo Popolare has raised the stakes for the Big Mamma Group in London. We're excited to see what happens next.