Polpo Smithfield

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Square Meal Review of Polpo Smithfield ?

Polpo’s Smithfield branch is a ‘near replica’ of Russell Norman’s original Venetian-style bácaro in Soho – and that’s a good thing. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it seems to be the thinking behind the trendy brick-and-tile interiors, the downstairs Negroni bar and hip ‘small plates’ menu scrawled on rough paper. The result is a ‘kooky’ hangout that’s always jammed and ‘great for a date’. Sharing is the way to go, which means you can give the menu a decent workout: start with ‘cicheti’ (small snacks) and an Aperol spritz before dipping into super-delicious cuttlefish and ink risotto, subtle rabbit and chicory tonnata salad or whole mozzarella with a heap of perfect broad beans. To finish, order the flourless orange cake or Nutella pizzette, plus another carafe of Italian wine (it’s that kind of place). You can book for lunch, but after 5pm it’s first come, first served.


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  1. Situated on a side-street just across from Smithfields meat market, the restaurant has a great atmosphere - dimly lit, but not overly so, with a nice bar and a cosy dining area. We started off with drinks at the bar, before moving to a snug table in the corner of the restaurant. Polpo has a fantastic menu - everything is designed to be shared (my favourite way of eating)...
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  1. Published : Wednesday, 17 July 2013

    Frenchy love food :: POLPO

    I went for the first time to the restaurant Polpo Smithfield with a friend James, I didn't know what was the concept of this restaurant or their menu as I never watch their website, so it was interesting to choose this place for dinner.
    Polpo is a Bàcaro which is the ancient Venetian name to refer to a bar/restaurant for a quick lunch /dinner stop, it is the same concept as a tapas bar in Spain but more sophisticated...
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  1. Published : Thursday, 13 February 2014

    They Can Eat :: Polpo : Smithfield

    We walked past this so often and thought little of the inconspicuous Polpo on Cowcross Street, Farringdon. Went in there for martinis a couple of weeks ago, then returned for food recently.

    Can’t book here, so we turned up at about 8 and had to wait 45 minutes in the cosy Negroni Bar downstairs which was no great inconvenience. Nice atmosphere in the bar and the martinis are decent. Mine, cucumber and basil. Hers, something with elderflower, I cant remember.

    The restaurant upstairs is bustling and full of energy, always something to catch your eye whether it be another diner or the quirky decor...
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  1. Venetian Bárcaro bite-sized dining has obviously proved to be a great concept as there are now three Polpo restaurants dotted about town. A welcome addition too has been their Aperol inspired bars which serve-up decent strength (yet small) doses to keep you happy while you wait for a table in these reservation-free restaurants.

    Though due to its success and narrow layout, Poplo Soho is not exactly the calmest place to eat – but then again, it’s not meant to be. It’s packed with friends having a great time, roaring their heads-off with laughter with a tumbler of wine in hand. So, it’s great news that you can...
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