As you’ve probably gleaned from its name, Lewisham’s Bella Roma is an Italian restaurant which serves all of the classic staples – think pastas, pizzas and more.
Bella Roma’s romantic and intimate dining room is Italian in style, but doesn’t feel clichéd. Instead of Italian flags everywhere and chequered tablecloths, you can expect to find terracotta walls, specials written up on blackboards and shelves stacked with Italian wines. There is also a bar towards the back of the room with a few stools for pre- or post-dinner drinks.
Bella Roma is an all-day affair, opening its doors for late breakfasts daily from 10am. On the breakfast menu, you will find all of the classics including a full English and eggs every which way, whether that be scrambled or poached, or fried with bacon on the side.
Later in the day, the restaurant’s Italian heritage is more obvious. To kick start your meal, choose from starters such as calamari fritti with tartare sauce or Mediterranean kings prawns, served in a blend of white wine sauce, garlic, chilli and lemon.
If you want to eat the traditional Italian way, your pasta course could see a classic seafood linguine or penne with salmon and cream cheese. If you’re not a pasta lover, there’s always the option of heading straight for the main courses proper, with dishes to try including pizza topped with Parma ham and Grana Padano shavings or 8oz grilled ribeye steak. There are plenty of sides available to pad out your meal too, such as zucchini fritti and sautéed potatoes.
It’s no surprise that desserts also stick to tradition, with Bella Roma’s list of classic Italian puddings featuring Amaretto tiramisu and panna cotta served with fresh strawberries. Bella Roma’s prices are pocket-friendly enough as is, but the set menu is a particular steal at three courses for under £15, while the promise of a Negroni or Aperol Spritz from a well-rounded drinks list is a further draw.