Is this the best lobster in London?

Tucked away in Parson's Green, Vicino Cucina is an authentic Italian with a flair for shellfish

For centuries, lobster has been the height of gastronomic sophistication. From bisque to Thermidor, there’s nothing like the deep reddy orange colour of freshly-cooked shellfish – and the lobster truly is the king of shellfish. So bibs at the ready, gents, for we may just have found the best lobster in London…

The vibe

A short walk from Parsons Green station, Vicino is a classic Italian restaurant in the heart of West London. After opening in 1987, the restaurant has gone from strength to strength – most recently with its appointment of Marco Moscoloni as head chef.

Moscoloni brought his traditional Tuscan cooking to Vicino, and this style is continued throughout the decor – which is traditional, with the walls covered in towering shelves and objets d’art. Soft pastel colours and Italian waiters give a feeling of true continentality – and the seating is just the right side of ample, without making you feel as though you’re miles from your fellow diners.

The cuisine

Italian through and through. Moscoloni has developed a number of signature recipes inspired by his hometown of Marche. And, from Casareece Sausages, White Lasagne porcino mushroom and truffle, to  Linguine Cartuccio, pappardelle with veal straccetti or his seafood fish stew, the food is as delectable as it sounds.

But, of course, the main attraction is the lobster. A champion find, in this relatively sleepy corner of West London, Vicino treats the shellfish with the deference it deserves – and it is cooked to perfection as a result. Unashamedly billed as the house speciality – and for good reason – the seafood is served with either spaghetti and a (rather hot) chilli and garlic sauce, or the more conservative french fries. Either way, it’s the meat itself that steals the show – soft, white and infused with flavour.

The drinks

To perfectly complement your lobster, a crisp white wine is a much. And, while you could choose many a glass from Vicino’s extensive wine list, from a 2014 Toscana Bianco Santa Lucia Castellani to a Sicilian Chardonnay Planta, our choice would be the Fiano, mezzogiorno – a Puglian wine with an aromatic and flavoured bouquet; the perfect crisp, fresh wine to complement your flavourful meal.

The damage

You’ll be talking normal rates for most plates, and very reasonably priced wine as well. This extends to the lobster, where a full shellfish will set you back just over £30 – great value for such fresh fish. And, if you’ve got room after the main, the desserts are also to die for…

Further Reading