8.7
Great

Image credits: Anton Rodriguez

Restaurants

Jason Allen 17/05/24


all’onda

Preparing risotto is an art form. It requires quality ingredients, time, and the unwavering dedication to stand watching over it with all the fierce adoration of a proud parent.

Luckily, there’s now a restaurant where someone else will do all that for you. And since that someone else is a head chef whose CV is practically littered with Michelin Stars, it’s unsurprisingly very, very good indeed. It’s called all’onda, meaning ‘on the wave’, and it’s just cut the ribbon on the dining Mecca that is Fitzrovia’s Charlotte Street.

all'onda restaurant

Risotto is one of the world’s great comfort foods, and all’onda will set out to make you feel very comfortable, from the soft, jazzy soundtrack to the freshly-baked bread that will arrive at your table, swaddled in linen, soon after you’re seated. The restaurant’s three distinct dining areas are enveloped in tan-coloured walls, there’s a few judiciously placed design pops with the stylish light fixtures and the one large, colourful painting, and there are freshly cut flowers adorning every single table. Restaurateur Cordula Schulz has opened all’onda as her own personal passion project, and she’s absolutely succeeded in giving this homely dish a more glamorous edge.

All'onda

And that elevation, naturally, extends to the food. In the kitchen is the highly talented Andrea Granzarolo, who’s spent his career at places like The Greenhouse (two Michelin Stars) and Hélène Darroze at the Connaught (three Michelin Stars), as well as actually having been born & raised in Lombardy itself, which is without a doubt the spiritual home of risotto itself.

The menu is refreshingly concise, and opens with elegant starters like beef ‘tartaccio’, which combines the textures of tartare and carpaccio; and a beautifully presented dish that puts seasonal white asparagus in the spotlight, with tender leeks & spring onions in a pool of creamy velouté.

Then there’s the non-risotto mains, venturing into more traditional secondi territory with generous cuts of fish or meat, like the opening dish of turbot with perky verbena and matcha. But of course, you’re here for the risotto, and there’s just five exquisitely executed options to choose from.

More traditional takes include the risotto alla milanese, famously sunshine-coloured by saffron, and given a rich, earthy flavour from bone marrow. In Italy it’s traditionally served with ossobucco, so here at all’onda it duly arrives with tender cuts of veal. There’s also an excellent lobster risotto, which comes with a more generous portion of the star ingredient that you might expect, as well as frothy tarragon foam and spoonfuls of parmesan cream. And if you’re after something a little unconventional? Try the highly intriguing combination of artichokes and sweetbread with coffee and black lime.

It can all be capped off with a tarte tatin that’s a feat of engineering, with tiny slivers of Pink Lady apple arranged in a beautifully laminated rosette – or, if you prefer, a cocktail like the Cape of Storms (below) with rooibos, pineapple, orange blossom and honey.

all'onda cocktail

With warm, attentive service led by the eminently affable general manager Marco Montalbano (formerly of Muse by Tom Aikens), all’onda is an impressive combination of quiet luxury with heart-warming comfort food. Oh, and that name? ‘On the wave’ refers to a risotto-making technique where rice is artfully tossed in the pan, creating a smooth, flowing texture that mimics the motion of waves.

Dive on in, the rice is lovely.

 

NOTE: You can find out more, and make a booking at all’onda here.

PREVIOUS PERK: Nudge Members (+1) got a three-week exclusive soft launch with 40% off the food bill for lunch and dinner. Don’t miss the next one – start a free trial here.

all’onda | 67 Charlotte Street, Fitzrovia, W1T 4PH


There’s more where this came from. Check out the risotto at London’s best Italian restaurants


all’onda


67 Charlotte Street, Fitzrovia , Central London, W1T 4PH

8.7 | Great