Al Duca 1

4-5 Duke of York Street , London, SW1Y 6LA

SquareMeal Review of Al Duca

Al Duca is the kind of reliable Italian that shuns fireworks in order to get the job done. Tricked out in terracotta tones, its looks are modest, but that’s all part of the venue’s ongoing appeal: here is a genuine neighbourhood restaurant among St James’s bigger hitters. Tastefully rendered tradition is the dominant culinary theme: to start, try the bitter hit of sautéed endive and radicchio with goats’ cheese and toasted hazelnuts or Culatello ham with pear, ginger, black pepper and truffle compote. Pasta includes classic crab tagliolini and homemade pappardelle with a rich beef ragù (as well as gluten-free options), while secondi are based around prime hunks of meat and seafood – monkfish with mushrooms pleased one reader. Puddings such as tiramisu and profiteroles hit the universally acknowledged sweet spots, and the “respectable” Italian wine list offers some pleasant discoveries (biodynamics included) for under £30.

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Al Duca is recommended for

Buzzy | Child Friendly | Breakfast | Brunch | Outside Seating

Special offers

20% Off food

From the a la carte menu.

From: 10 July 2018

To: 31 July 2018

Max: 6

Maximum of 6 diners. Includes VAT, excludes service.

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Nearby Tube/Rail Stations

Piccadilly Circus Tube Station 297m

Green Park Tube Station 495m

Address

Address: 4-5 Duke of York Street , London SW1Y 6LA

Area: Whitehall Buckingham Palace

Opening times

Mon-Sat 12N-11pm (Sat 12.30pm- )

Nearby Landmarks

Jermyn Street 71m

Jermyn Street Theatre 143m

Details

Telephone: 020 3641 1875

Website:

Cuisine: Italian

8.5

Food & Drink: 8.5

Service: 8.2

Atmosphere: 7.5

Value: 8.2

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Timothy P. silver reviewer 23 November 2015

We arrived about 8.15pm on a Friday evening (having booked online) and were shown to a table promptly. It was, and remained pretty much full throughout our meal, but wasn't horribly noisy. All aspects of the meal - food options, ordering, service and waiter attention- were very acceptable. Delivery also was well-timed. My chili tagliatelli with crab was excellent, with no trace of shell; in fact it could have been a little spicier even. Monkfish with mushrooms was another interesting option. A respectable choice of wines by the glass, with reasonably priced house wines. Overall, with service of 12.5% included (and a £1 donation to Charity which should at least have been mentioned in advance), £115 was a satisfactory cost for the meal.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Terry N. 15 June 2014

This was my second visit to Al Duca, and it didn't disappoint. We went with two friends who had not been before. Our table was excellent, just by a fully opened window, whch on a warm evening added to the ambience. Three of us glad three courses and on had four. All of the food was of a very high standard, and we all liked the pricing structure ie a fixed price simply based on the number of courses., all chosen from a menu with adequate choice. The ine was a little pricey, but very enjoyable. Only one critiscism – the waiter did not top up the glasses, and having chosen a good wine and paying the standard 12.5% service charge, details like this matter. I have o say however, that in my experience, the standard service charge provides no incentive to the waiters to go the extra mile!

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 5.0

Value: 3.0

Pixie S. 28 February 2014

This is an excellent Italian restaurant in the heart of Jermyn Street. Food and service are consistently good. The atmosphere is good if a little bright. A good selection of Italian wines. Like most decent London restaurants its a bit on the pricey side. Tables a bit close together for a romantic night out.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 2.0

Value: 4.0

Sue H. bronze reviewer 23 October 2013

A lovely modern Italian restaurant. We had the set lunch which was good value, particularly for the standard of food with good ingredients/taste combinations.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Gourmand Gunno platinum reviewer 05 September 2013

Most people are aware that St James is a pretty posh part of London, and so to know of a well-priced restaurant that serves reliably good and consistent food in this area is a definite find. I have been eating here on and off for the last decade, have rarely been disappointed, and a recent lunch proved no exception. Do not be put off by the slightly tacky fake grass under the tables at the front of the restaurant (nor the building work going on opposite); once you enter, you see warm terracotta toned furnishings and wine bottles on the wall. The main event here is the food. Things started well with a delicious range of breads accompanied by lightly peppered olive oil brought to the table (and without a cover charge). Diners then get to choose from each of around half-a-dozen starters, pasta dishes and mains along with daily changing specials. At £23.50 for two courses, or £28.00 for three, this is a real steal, and we were delighted. Two of our group of three opted for the special starter of a crab salad, flavoured with chilli. The crab was fresh and the spice-hit just right. The third of our group also enjoyed his beef carpaccio, accompanied by pine nuts and delicately flavoured with lemon dressing. Mains were a similar success and Al Duca provided a very good lesson in how to prepare a simple dish effectively. I opted for tagliatelle with black truffle, mixed mushrooms and sour butter, and there were no complaints, each of the flavours standing out but also melding effortlessly with the others. My comrades were similarly pleased with their options. There were few negatives, but it is worth highlighting that the tables are perhaps too tightly packed, and almost exclusively populated by suited diners. Noise levels were correspondingly elevated and it would be fair to say, having also dined here in the evening, that this is more a place for business than for romance. The service was generally good, but somewhat over-bearing at times: I do not need a different member of staff to come by every five minutes just to have my glass of sparkling water topped up. Small quibbles from a generally successful experience.

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Martyn C. 02 June 2013

I booked for my wife's birthday and asked that two glasses of bubbly be given to us on arrival. Once we were sat they arrived with perfect timing. The food was delicious but I felt at times overly herbed. I had the Tuna which was covered in a herb crust.. That was all of the taste. However this was just my personal opinion. Everything else was great. The service first class. We will return and I would inordinately recommend

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Timothy P. silver reviewer 23 May 2013

Dinner mid-week, picked out of the Square Meal options based on location, availability, and online booking ( I passed on another restaurant as its online link was broken!). We arrived a bit early, but they fitted us in comfortably; good bread basket with several varieties and oil was provided (without a cover charge thankfully!). They offer a 1/2/3/4 course set price meal option, with a couple specials, which we chose along with the modest additional charge of £3 and £5. Freshly prepared thin pasta with crabmeat, and grilled fish on skewers – both hot and tasty. Beef carpaccio starter was chilled and presumably prepared in advance, with rocket and parmesan topping added before service. Wine list was exclusively Italian, but a good choice and pretty reasonably priced for the area. I was pleased they turned the spotlights down mid-meal as it was all a bit glittery to begin with. Discretionary service charge is at 12.5%.

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 5.0

Value: 5.0

Steve T. 12 March 2013

This restaurant is a regular for me. It has everything you could ask for from a bustling Italian. The staff are always charismatic and the food is to die for! I am especially keen on the sea bass and always receive a warm welcome. The menu is extensive and offers great value for money. Visit soon!

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 2.0

Value: 3.0

Continental Diner platinum reviewer 11 December 2012

A good, above average place in St. James's. The thing with Al Duca is that while very solid, it does sport a slightly “corporate” feel. While reliable, usually quite flexible and open late, there is simply a “special zing” missing to make this a truely great address. However value is acceptable and service is charming unless the restaurant gets very busy.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

john r. bronze reviewer 23 January 2012

Al Duca remains a very good restaurant in a convenient Central London location. We have been eating here for over ten years but no so much recently since we moved away from the immediate area but I'm glad to say that standards remain high and the prices quite reasonable.

Special offers

20% Off food

From: 10 July 2018

To: 31 July 2018

Max: 6

Maximum of 6 diners. Includes VAT, excludes service.

Check out the SquareMeal Lists which include Al Duca