Located a brisk walk from London Bridge station and right by Tower Bridge, Legare (pronounced ‘le-ga-re’) is a casual Italian which focuses on seasonal ingredients and fresh pasta. Legare is the first solo restaurant from Jay Patel (previously general manager at Barrafina Adelaide Street) and young chef Matt Beardmore, who was previously senior sous chef at Highbury’s Trullo.
Despite its central location, Legare touts itself as a neighbourhood restaurant and this more homely approach to dining is evident on the restaurant’s menu. Legare’s food offering consists of a specials board featuring experimental seasonal dishes, alongside a short and regularly changing list of antipasti and fresh pasta dishes, with all of the pasta made daily by hand and in-house.
Dishes to look out for include the tempting likes of tajarin with ‘burro e salvia’ (butter and sage), as well as semolina-based pastas from southern Italy such as orecchiette with fennel sausage and Swiss chard ragu.
Before the main event, you can tuck into antipasti options including fett’unta of goats’ curd and sobrasada, and a daily crudo offering which is dictated by day-boat fishing and seasonal oysters. To round off your meal, indulge in a homemade cannoli for dessert, which arrives stuffed with seasonal fillings.
The restaurant takes provenance seriously, using only a handful of thoughtfully considered suppliers. These include the acclaimed likes of Neal’s Yard Dairy, The Ham & Cheese Company and Kernow Sashimi.
Legare’s wine list features natural, low-intervention bottles from small producers, with a particular focus on wines from Italy and its neighbouring countries. Customers can also buy some of the available wines to take home, alongside other produce such as olives sourced from across Sicily, Croatia and the wider Mediterranean.
The interiors meanwhile feature pastel-washed walls which draw their inspiration from modern-day Italian cafes, while a clever layout allows for solo diners, as well as those in pairs and small groups.
Images: Jamie Orlando Smith and Hanna Benjamin