Enoteca da Luca Guildhall

Bars, Bistro, Cheese, Fish, Italian, Wine Bars·
Bronze Award

SquareMeal Review of Enoteca da Luca Guildhall

Bronze Award

Each of these attractive wine bars has its own distinct character and menu but the house style, which simply relies on great Italian ingredients and wines, should bring out the Latin lover in everyone. Dotted around the City with a further outpost in Mayfair, they’re ideal stop-off points for seriously tempting platters of antipasti and cheese, as well as beautifully prepared, tapas-sized sharing plates. Think octopus, chorizo and Jerusalem artichoke, or burrata with pickled beetroot and curly kale, embellished with a touch of honeycomb for sweetness. If you’re not one for sharing, don't despair: you can hog the slow-cooked pig cheeks with soft polenta and parmesan crisps for yourself, washing it down with a little Tignanello and leaving with a smile on your face.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £50 - £79
Bars, Bistro, Cheese, Fish, Italian, Wine Bars
Cool, Cosy, Fun
Perfect for
Birthdays, Celebrations, Dates, Group dining [8+], Special occasions
Food Hygiene Rating


Cosy, little wine bars are one of the best things about Italian holidays - something that the owners of restaurant Enoteca da Luca know only too well. That's why they've endeavoured to give Londoners an authentic Italian experience across their boutique collection of restaurants in St Pauls, Devonshire Square and Guildhall. 

Set on Basinghall Street in east London, the restaurant is small to medium sized and full of charm and character. Rustic tables are complemented by industrial lighting and hanging foliage, while the walls are lined with wine bottles for a homely vibe. 

The food menu follows a typically Italian format starting with antipasti sharing plates such as polenta e funghi which is crispy polenta with creamed mixed mushrooms, alongside yellowfin tuna carpaccio with artichokes and lemon, plus bresaola e caprino which is air-dried beef with goat’s cheese and lemon dressing. Order a couple for the table alongside an aperitivo drink.

For first course, choose between pasta dishes like black tagliolini with white crab meat, garlic and chili or porcini mushroom ravioli with butter, sage and Parmesan, or enjoy specials like seared sea bass or slow-braised lamb shank with mash potato and roasted chestnuts. Then, for sides and salads, there's some gorgeous-sounding ingredient-led plates like sautéed spinach with butter and Parmesan or Datterini tomatoes with Tropea onions and basil. Or, if you'd prefer a glass of wine and some snacks, tuck into the likes of roasted baby green peppers sprinkled with sea salt, Nocellara green olives and a selection of bread dunked in Montoni extra-virgin olive oil.

There are red, white, rose and sparkling wines available by the glass, with of course, many sourced from across Italy from producers in Puglia, Sicily and Tuscany. If a bottle is what you're after, there's several pages of whites and reds, especially those marked as specifically from Italy.


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Aperitivio Hour Monday to Friday 5 to 7
The Taste of Italy


10-12 Basinghall Street, City of London, London, EC2V 5BQ

020 7600 2161 020 7600 2161


Opening Times

All day
Mon 12:00-23:00
Tue 12:00-23:00
Wed 12:00-23:00
Thu 12:00-23:00
Fri 12:00-23:00
Sat Closed
Sun Closed


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2 Reviews 


11 April 2014  
Food & Drink 2.5
Service 4.5
Atmosphere 4
Value 3
“Small is beautiful” is the motto of this Enoteca on a quiet City backstreet and boy is that accurate in terms of space! With its dark ceilings and wine-lined walls bearing down on you, it certainly feels like they have crammed in a huge amount of seating, from shared high tables to banquettes with closely packed tables; I'm not honestly sure how we managed to fit the 4 of us in with a buggy! The crowdedness works really well though for this venue creating a buzzy, elbow-rubbing rather than elbow-sharpening, atmosphere that is so laid back that no-one, neither staff nor besuited clientele, expressed surprise or disapproval that we had bought a child into this wholly unsuitable drinking den of iniquity. Service was fantastic: the waitress was charmed by the baby and we in turn were charmed by her. There might have been moments when delivery could have been smoother but it was so friendly we hardly noticed and certainly didn't care. Food itself didn't particularly blow me away I'm afraid: roasted pork belly was the best but portions were small (not in a beautiful way) and I've had better calamari/arancini/prosciutto/bread etc elsewhere. But that's not what you here for; it's an enoteca, so it's all about the wine, right? Well, it is if you like Italian reds: there are over 50 of those alone. I was a bit disappointed that they don't offer more than 5 white wines by the glass (although I should say I enjoyed the Gavi I had) and even if you went for a bottle choice is more limited to about 30 in total. It feels a bit unbalanced as a list (if you are going to take a romp around the world offering a few other reds, do you need to include 4 Argentinian Malbecs?). I probably wouldn't come back for lunch again, unless we were settling in for an all-day, post-deal, “bed wetter” as an old colleague of mine would say, but I'd definitely come for a few post-work drinks. Without a baby.

Ru L

11 September 2013  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 3.5
Value 4.5
Favourite City Wine Bar (with great 'tapas')
This is a superb little establishment in the heart of the City, just off Gresham Street, next door to the Hawksmoor. An excellent Italian wine list and superb ‘tapas’ like small dishes that you can mix and match, favourites being the seared tuna steak on rocket, over-sized arancini, meat platters and buffeta mozzarella. Service is fast, polite and smiley. Good atmosphere encased in wine-clad and wood panelled walls. My only negative would be that the bar area is small and a lack of outside space – it would make a killing if it had outdoor space…
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