Mediterranean food has recently become one of London’s most popular cuisines. Formerly focusing solely on the northern coast, recent restaurant launches such as Morito, The Palomar and Berber & Q have given equal billing to the southern and western reaches, borrowing equal influence from Turkey, the Levant and the Maghreb. Tuyo is very much in the same vein as these launches, the kitchens will be overseen by Ricardo Pimentel of Salt Yard and his team from El Ganso, La Farola and Gallipoli.
They’ve put the bustling, boisterous Broadway Market neighbourhood in their crosshairs. Occupying a long narrow space with outsized windows letting in lashings of natural light, as well as an expansive al fresco area, the airy, relaxed dining room is quite in keeping with its east London environs. They’ve kept things casual with white tables, wicker seating and charming birdcage pendant lights dangling amongst hanging plants. The open-plan kitchen on the near end of the room imbues the restaurant with a fun and slightly frenetic ambience.
We’d recommend kicking the meal off with one of their gin specials. Gin Mare with tonic, lemon and rosemary was a refreshing foil to the nibbles and charcuterie that followed. Of the latter, we were completely smitten by a platter that arrived wobbling with hot smoked pig cheeks, lamb merguez salami and wild boar salami. In the same vein, the Bellota burger is a perfect showcase of pork, the slider supporting a juicy slab topped with pequillo ketchup, agri-dolce onion, tzatzkiki and manchego.
However, there are plenty of lighter options on the menu. Char-grilled artichokes with soya beans, black quinoa, feta cheese and parmesan were as toothsome as anything else we tried. The freshness of heritage tomato salad with baby squid, Lilliput capers, gremolata and eight year aged balsamic vinegar was unparalleled, and a curly, crispy tendril of grilled octopus served with pepperanota, hummus and cumin yoghurt was truly revelatory.
If you haven’t been, Broadway Market is a fine way to spend a Saturday. And if you want something sumptuous in a sophisticated setting, Tuyo will suit your purposes.
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