Rita’s have been appearing here and there since 2012 in various guises, including pop ups, residencies, and semi-permanent restaurants (…that fate decided were actually pop ups too).
And now, finally, almost a decade on it looks like they might have just cracked it.
Because Ritas is now open in Soho, and it’s hopefully here to stay. They put together a cosy spot on Lexington Street, with a couple of diner-style red leather booths at the back and come counter seating up front, opposite their colourful tile bar. It would all feel very much at home over in New York, which is no accident given their propensity for inventive American-style Comfort food.
Speaking of, let’s talk about the menu. Things start with jalapeno popper gildas (with a stuffed olive pinned to an anchovy & a slice of fresh chilli), or a tennis ball-sized lump of tear & share garlic bread, literally dripping in rich, creamy garlic butter. Don’t worry, getting your hands messy is part and parcel of a meal here. After that, you can get a plate of clams with creamed celery, all mopped up with ‘fried Idaho scones’ – savoury treats which might be mistaken for doughnuts. And we’ve yet to hit the main courses, which include a hearty sugar-pit pork chop with grilled cabbage & hazelnut ‘slaw. And for dessert? You can’t really fault their key lime pie, which comprises a circular crust stuffed with bright green pie filling, and topped with a thick layer of toasted meringue.
The drinks is pretty healthy, too. There’s plenty of interesting wine by the glass and of course, their signature margarita, which includes a healthy dose of hibiscus.
In fact, it’s so good, they decided to name the restaurant after it.
NOTE: Rita’s is open Tues-Sat evenings. You can book a table, and find out more at their website right HERE.
Rita’s | 49 Lexington Street, W1F 9AP
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