If you have grown tired of the London restaurant scene’s need to constantly outdo itself with ever zanier concepts and oh-so-modern dishes (deconstructed Earl Grey cheesecake, anyone?), consider Bolton’s for your next meal out - a resolutely traditional restaurant which will embrace you like a warm hug from an old friend.
Found in the heart of the City of London, the subterranean dining room at Bolton’s is joyfully old-school, complete with a deep red carpet, tables dressed with white tablecloths and oil paintings depicting historical figures or pastoral scenes. While the space feels quintessentially British, the focus of the kitchen is actually Italian cuisine - fastidiously sourced produce lies at the core of the a la carte, which is replete with staple Italian dishes that in some instances, have been given contemporary updates.
The offering kicks off with breakfast, served from 8am, when early risers can tuck into a full English (vegetarian and vegan versions available), eggs any style or toasted baps filled with the likes of bacon and sausage. For the more virtuous, there is smashed avocado on toast, which can be washed down with a freshly blitzed smoothie.
Later in the day, the a la carte takes centre stage, offering a whole host of comforting Italian fare. Begin with starters such as deep-fried calamari or scallops topped with bacon and spinach, before moving on to indulgent pasta dishes such as lobster linguine or pappardelle topped with meatballs, tomato sauce and a touch of cream. Carnivorous types meanwhile, can enjoy veal, beef or chicken cooked various ways, padded out with side orders of sauteed mushrooms or a mixed leaf salad.
Bolton’s wine menu is lengthy, but well considered, featuring bottles sourced from across Italy, as well as varieties from Spain, France and Portugal. For those who don’t fancy wine, there are spirits, brandies and non-alcoholic juices.