Amico Bio has opened on the former site of Betjeman’s Wine Bar in Cloth Fair, serving an entirely vegetarian menu of traditional and simple Italian dishes.
Having become a vegetarian recently himself, Amico and co-owners Enrico Amico and Bruno Zarzaca will use seasonal produce imported twice a week from the family's farm in Capua, in the Campania region of Italy, on Amico Bio's menu. The ingredients will also be sold from a small retail area on site where organic produce such as tofu, olive oil, seitan and pasta can be purchased.
Dishes include Chargrilled Polenta with Wild Mushrooms and Taleggio, Roasted Seitan on a bed of braised Red Cabbage with Red Wine Sauce, Artichoke braised in White Wine with a Seasonal Leaf Salad, and Italian Cannelini Bean Salad with Shallots and Parsley.
Vegetarian Italian cuisine
Amico, who has previously held head chef positions at Via Condotti, Sartoria, Refettorio and Locanda Locatelli, working with Brunno Loubet, Giorgio Locatelli and Gary Rhodes, said: “You don’t have to be a vegetarian to eat vegetarian and Italian cuisine offers some of the best meat-free dishes.”
Luca Palese, formerly of Cipriani Restaurant in Mayfair, which closed recently after a legal battle with Hotel Cipriani in Venice, has joined Amico Bio as restaurant manager.