I finally got the chance to eat at Padella. Was it worth the wait? Quite simply yes it was. Now don’t get me wrong I’ve tried to go there a few times but on a regular basis – seven days a week- when the queue is super long, I admit, I just couldn’t be bothered. But I arrived at a time when to my surprise the queue wasn’t that big and the waiting time wasn’t that long. Thank god for the pubs and to Padella’s credit my table was ready half an hour before I was meant to be back.
So why is Padella a popular restaurant to go to?
The restaurant is what Italian food is all about. Fresh, uncomplicated dishes made with passion. It really is simplicity at its best. There’s no pretentiousness to this place and the peeps that make Padella a success love the buzz they always get from customers. It might be a little cosy both upstairs and downstairs but don’t let it put you off because Padella conjures up mouth watering plates of pasta. My advice, order at least three plates to share and make the most of it.
All of the pasta is made in house and it most certainly does make a major difference and the food undoubtedly tastes a whole lot better. It’s cheap and cheerful stuff. Whoever thinks Padella is expensive, you’re just barking mad.
Having antipasti is always a good start before the main event. Padella’s green olives are plump and juicy and the saltiness just makes it even more moreish and as for the cider and seaweed salami, it’s just melt in your mouth stuff. A good slice of salami on some home-made sourdough bread and drizzled with some top olive oil is the definition of paradise. Ask for more olive oil, it’s that damn good.
The bruschetta is also worth mentioning and highly recommended. Again, its made with Padella’s homemade sourdough and topped with creamy and mushy cannellini beans and Salsa Rossa – a kick ass oven roasted sweet pepper salsa.
It’s hard not to be tempted by what other people are having especially when they’re literally a stone throw away because Padella’s main courses look and smell banging. There’s no two ways about it and all of their dishes use a variety of pastas. This is the proper stuff. At home we’re use to having mountains of sauce dolloped over the pasta. Here, its done the proper way, the fresh pasta coated in the sauce and it’s not drowned in the stuff either. The balance and the ratio of pasta to sauce is spot on.
The gnocchi is soft and fluffy and it’s laced with a tasty, smooth and silky sage and nutmeg butter. A perfect combination and for £4, it’s a steal.
For the bigger plates, the soft pappardelle gets a good coating from the peppery fennel sausage ragu and it also packs a good bit of heat but the chilli, lemon and crab tagliarini is the winner for me. A generous helping of soft, flaky crab is embedded into the pasta and the classic combination of chilli and lemon is just delicious.
If you’re considered a patient person, then Padella is more than worth the wait. It’s fresh, fast pasta done really well and for the price, it can’t be beaten. With the restaurant next door to Borough Market, it only makes the appetite that more bigger as well. Get me in that queue and I’ll be patient this time.
Monday to Saturday
12-3.45pm & 5-10pm
12-3.45pm & 5-9pm