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Since opening back in 2003, Latium has consistently wowed readers with its "authentic Italian" offer. The interior is fairly neutral, with pale walls and dark leather furniture, but it's pepped up with a well-stocked bar and a massive vintage coffee machine. Pique your appetite with an Italian sparkler (there's life beyond Prosecco), before browsing the menu – a classic line-up that puts chef-patron Maurizio Morelli's native Lazio (aka Latium) in the spotlight. Grilled octopus with piquant giant capers brings a taste of the coast, while rigatoni with veal ragu smacks of peasant cooking, and there's roast duck breast with datterini tomatoes too. A whole section of the menu is devoted to the chef's beloved ravioli (try the crab with asparagus sauce), while desserts include such patriotic favourites as tiramisu and affogato. Regional Italian wines rule the roost, supplemented by a handful of Champagnes.
Buried in a back-street a few minutes’ walk from Oxford Street, down a road of tall anonymous office-type buildings, Latium doesn’t look like much from the outside, but as you open the door, the staff pull back a curtain and welcome you into a warm and inviting atmosphere.Whilst the décor left something to be desired (the restaurant opened in 2003 and the interior quite possibly has not been updated since then), the engaging friendliness of the staff meant that we did not even notice this until seated and sipping our first drink.
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