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Puglia, that southern, sun-soaked region of Italy, had been under-represented (ie non-existent) on the London dining scene until this double-fronted cantina opened its doors. Ostuni’s shtick is rustic plates of pasta, seafood and ‘bombettes’ (rolled pork with provolone cheese) baked in a traditional stone oven. It’s packed most nights, which means service is frenetic, but it’s warm and authentic – just like the food. Tonno carpaccio is light, and garnished with lemony raw fennel salad. The slow-cooked octopus with fava bean purée is umami-rich and perfectly cooked. Foglia d’ulivo – olive leaf shaped green pasta with garlic mushrooms, truffle and a dollop of burrata melting on top – is heaven in a dish. Fresh fish is brought in daily, so the sea bream baked in a salt crust or catch of the day is worth a shot, served with a rocket and fennel salad, leaving room for a mug of tiramisu to finish. Kick off with a Negroni then move on to a carafe of Locorotondo, a punchy white that pairs well with meat and fish.
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