Osteria, a new restaurant created by Searcys in collaboration with Anthony Demetre, is to launch on11th February 2016. Located at the Barbican Centre, one of the UK’s foremost cultural institutions, the restaurant will specialise in bold, ingredient-focused Italian cooking in the bistronomy style that Demetre has helped to pioneer. Led by Head Chef Patrick Leano, formerly of Michelin starred Arbutus in Soho, the menus will change regularly, with a focus on Italian produce and seasonality.
In the centre of the restaurant will be an old meat slicer, and table dedicated to housemade charcuterie. Alongside starters of Carpaccio of Sea Bream, Clementine, Fennel and Chilli; White Onion and Bread Soup; and Buratta with artichokes, carrots and hazelnuts, expect to find sharing dishes such as Porchetta; ‘Roman-style’ tripe; and Grilled Octopus, potatoes and smoked peppers. Homemade pasta dishes such as Rigatoni with Sicilian Sausage and Ricotta Gnudi with Endive and Apple Balsamic Dressing will be central to the menu, while signature mains include Suckling Pig with Sage Potatoes and Slow cooked beef polenta and roast onions. Classic desserts of Polenta Cake with Orange Marmalade, and Zabaione complete the menu.
Cocktails will focus on Italian classics such as Negronis and Bellinis. They will be offered in both the classic styles but also ‘with a twist’, such as the Amber Negroni which replaces the traditional sweet vermouth and Campari with Braulioa and Lillet. Bellinis will be adapted to suit the seasons – mulled cider syrup and fig vodka in autumn and strawberry in summer. The wine list will include famous Barolos or Supertuscans plus an intriguing line-up of indigenous varieties and new generation winemakers from Puglia, Sicily and Sardinia.
Demetre says of the launch: “The Barbican Centre is a national treasure both for its architecture and cultural programme and I’m excited to be opening here with Searcys. I love Italian food for its honesty, gutsy flavours and magnificent ingredients. I’m fortunate to have the talented PatrickLeanoas Head Chef as he shares my ethos and passion for Italian cooking.”
With views of looking over London,Osteriais located on the second floor of the Barbican Centre. A modern yet warm and inviting space, the restaurant will take inspiration from its surroundings such as the brass bannisters of the Barbican Centre which are reflected in the restaurant’s brass light fixtures and door handles. Elsewhere, leather upholstery with splashes of luxurious fabrics are used for comfy seating booths, while a feature wine display made of lacquered mild steel, breaks up the space. The bar is separated from the restaurant by a herringbone parquet floor and the use of gold and metallic grey fabrics. A neon sign above the bar says “Amore Bibo”, Latin for “I drink with Love”.
The walls of the restaurant will be dedicated to showcasing work of artists from Limoncello Gallery in Hagerston, linking the space to the cultural surroundings of the Barbican Centre. The first artist to exhibit their work in the gallery will be German-born Cornelia Baltes who studied at The Slade in London and produces strongly physical works, that often escape the frame and spill out on to the surrounding walls. Next will be Alice Browne, an MA student at the Royal College of Art whose striking abstract canvases have been exhibited everywhere from Naples to Norway.