If you’ve found yourself at Liverpool Street Station recently, you will probably have noticed that there has been a major change in the area. That’s right, the Italian food hall Eataly has opened its first London branch just steps from the Bishopsgate exit.
Eataly, which already has nearly 40 locations around the world, has made its home in a gigantic site that spans 42,000 square feet. The Italian Food Market features a plethora of vendors selling and cooking authentic Italian produce, with a style similar to other famous London food destinations such as Borough Market.
The place opened partially at the end of April 2020, in accordance with Covid-19 guidelines which only allowed alfresco dining. Guests were able to browse the dining room and eat on an outdoor terrace, as well as enjoy pizza, pasta, ice cream and other Italian treats at the take-out stalls.
In May, the outdoor dining terrace was joined by a cooking school, as well as two indoor restaurants, Cucina del Mercato and Pasta e Pizza. In September of the same year, a flagship wood-fired grill restaurant named Terra will open in space.
Eataly was originally founded in Turin, Italy, and has since opened locations around the world. You can currently find Eataly outposts in New York, Moscow, Tokyo and Munich to name a few, so it’s surprising that the brand has waited so long to open in London.
Eataly London is the UK’s largest free-standing food court. Visitors can buy Italian products such as ciabatta, cold cuts, olive oil and cheeses. There are also a few bars, filled with Italian wines and offering classic cocktails such as the Negronis and Aperol Spritz, while those looking to deepen their knowledge of Italian cuisine can participate in one of the cooking classes in the area. ‘Eataly London. -cooking school site.
Eataly London is now open at 135 Bishopsgate, EC2M 3YD.
Eataly Restaurants in London
Check out all of London’s Eataly restaurants and bars below, including what you can expect to find on the menu and what occasions they’re suited for.
La Terrazza di Eataly
What: There isn’t much more Italian than enjoying a meal in the sun, so it’s only natural that Eataly’s London outpost includes a terrace for alfresco dining. Open all year (count radiators and blankets in winter), La Terrazza di Eataly, fully covered, offers a selection of seasonal Italian dishes to share at the table, as well as a cocktail menu designed in collaboration with Aperol. Savor classics like homemade burrata, traditional Bolognese and Margherita pizzas, while sipping on a refreshing Aperol Spritz.
Best for: Summer nights in the sun with friends.
Pasta and Pizza
What: Of course, there’s a lot more to Italian cuisine than pasta and pizza, but there’s a reason these two staples are among the country’s most popular exports. Here, expect to try traditional pasta served al dente and wood-fired pizzas made with leavened dough for 50 hours. On the menu you’ll find dishes such as buttery tagliolini, Parmigiano Reggiano and black truffle, while the pizzas arrive topped with mozzarella and spicy sausage. Drizzle it all down with your choice of Italian wines.
Best for: Those nights when you crave some serious comfort food.
Cucina del Mercato
What: Translated to English as ‘market cuisine’, Cucina del Mercato is Eataly’s market-to-table concept, where the menu is underpinned by produce from its own market counters. This means that you can expect to find fresh fish, cold cuts, cheese, and staples, all put to good use, resulting in dishes like whole sea bass and free range chicken accompanied by orders of accompaniment like triple cooked potatoes and mixed vegetables.
Best for: Perfect for casual catch-ups over a cheese platter and a little wine.
What: No London foodie destination is complete without a bar and Central is open all day, making it the perfect place for an after-work drink or weekend cocktail with friends. The bar also serves lunch and dinner, so you can pair your classic Italian cocktails with equally traditional Italian snacks – expect to sip on Negronis and Aperol Spritz.
Best for: Casual drinks and appetizers.
Terra (Opens end of 2021)
What: The trend to cook with open flames doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, so it makes sense that Eataly London is opening a wood-fired grill as its flagship restaurant. Expect a menu of simple grilled meat and fish dishes with seasonal flavors, ideally washed down with a botanical cocktail from the neighboring Terra Bar.
Best for: Relaxed dinners with your silly restaurant friends.
What: Terra may sound like a “botanical cocktail bar,” but before you get there, be sure to check out the wine list – the bar claims to house the largest selection of Italian wines in London. Classic Italian cocktails are another main draw, while Italian gins and craft beers from small Italian producers round out the list nicely.
Best for: Drinks after a long day at the office.
If you fancy exploring some of the capital’s other food hubs, check out our pick of the best food markets in London.