Hattie Lloyd 04/09/22

Polpo Soho

Polpo Soho | Iconic Venetian-Styled Italian Restaurant

Venice has produced a great deal of cultural treasures.

It was a hub for the Renaissance. It inspired Shakespeare. And if it weren’t for their blinds, private detectives around the world would have curtains in their offices.

However surprisingly little attention has been paid to their food.

At least, that was the case until 2009, when the original Polpo opened in Soho, courtesy of the late, great, hipster-chic restaurant pioneer Russell Norman. Sitting on Beak Street, just round the corner from Carnaby Street and Kingly Court, it remains the perfect way to escape the city through the medium of candlelight, carbs and tumblers of good wine.

polpo soho

The rustic interiors of Polpo Soho replicate those of the traditional wine bars that can be found dotted around Venice; brick walls, unassuming furniture, and bare-bulb lighting match the simplicity of the menu. And on that menu you’ll find…


Split into neat little sections of neat little dishes, Polpo Soho offers a concise selection of small plates – ranging from wild boar and mushroom pizzette, to beef shin ragu on fresh rigatoni, to stuffed fried olives, and chilli & crab linguine. And that’s just the savoury stuff.


The “Sweet Things” section of Polpo’s menu includes Aperol sorbet, chocolate salami, and ricotta doughnuts with cinnamon sugar. All of this is paired with –


Italian restaurants would be hounded out of town if they didn’t have a comprehensive menu of wines, spritzes and cocktails – and seeing as this one is still here, it’s safe to assume they have enough on offer to appease the masses.


However, Polpo Soho has a little something extra for the cocktail connoisseur. Hidden down in the basement is The Campari Bar; an intimate space where cocktails can be sipped whilst sampling various small plates of cicchetti (bar snacks/side dishes).

It’s blindingly good.


NOTE: Polpo Soho is open daily, 12-11pm (10pm Sun)– you can book a table HERE.

Polpo Soho | 41 Beak Street, London W1F 9SB

Like dining out in Soho? Check out our guide to the best restaurants in Soho

Polpo Soho

41 Beak Street, Soho, W1F 9SB

020 7734 4479

8.5 | Great