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Feb 18, 2010 02:44 AM

Pasta in Central London

Does anyone know anywhere good where you can get a good quick bowl of pasta, ideally to take away, in central London. Thanks.

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  1. Where in central London please? I'm assuming that you're not going to travel say from Earls Court to The City just to get a bowl of take-away pasta, however good it may be!

    Anyway, if you are in The City, Fresh Italy on King William St. is excellent for exactly what you want.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Robin Joy

      Thanks Robin. Is there anything in Covent Garden/Soho that you know of?

      Will check out Fresh Italy when I get a chance.

        1. re: zuriga1

          I have. Big fan of it in there. Thanks Zuriga. Wish there were more of them though.

          1. re: thelondonknowledge

            If I was younger, I'd bring over my pals from South Philly and start a great chain of Italian food places. :-)

    2. If you're looking for quick/cheap rather than 'fancy' pasta, try Kitchen Italia in Covent Garden. It's basically 'the Wagamama of pasta' but is all fresh and pretty tasty.

      For something more decadent, try Bocca di Lupo.

      5 Replies
      1. re: DollyDagger

        I tried this place last week and have to say it was not great at all - my linguine with chilli, prawns and tomato was a claggy, flavourless pile of pasta. I do, however, like the idea of having fresh basil and oils on the table to add myself - without these my meal would have been pretty horrible!

        1. re: DollyDagger

          Hadn't heard of Kitchen Italia. I will check it out. Thanks DD.

          1. re: thelondonknowledge

            Went to Kitchen Italian in Covent Garden last week. Was not particularly impressed. I had spaghetti with meatballs which was unmemorable. Some arrancini sides were bland and the anchovy dip with breadsticks, although beautifully presented in a copper pot with a tealight underneath(!), was a waste of money. Their takeaway thing was a bit of an afterthought also.

            I do find it odd - given how much I (and I assume others) love pasta - that there is nowhere that seems to have this nailed down.

            1. re: thelondonknowledge

              Sorry about your experience at Kitchen Italia. It seems we were lucky on our visit as I've not heard much praise for it since.

              Not sure how quick / local these are for you but can recommend 500 in Archway (honestly, worth the trip 'up North') and Zucca, new to SE1. The latter's sister, Malting's Cafe, is also worth a trip.

          2. re: DollyDagger

            Bocca di Lupo's lunchtime pastas, especially the amatriciana, are one of London's great bargains. Just sayin.

          3. I think one of the problems with wanting quick pasta is it's a terrible food to leave sitting around for a while, it needs to be fresh, I've never in my life eaten pasta that is sitting there on a heater ready cooked without it being crap to be honest. Locanda Locatelli have some nice pasta dishes but it's a full sit down meal. I find getting good pasta hard in London, over in Italy though there are unsurpringly some lovely offerings, it's definetly something that could be improved on in London.

            6 Replies
            1. re: UK2004

              Isn't most pasta eaten as a sit-down meal?

              Harters is trying a new Italian place in London this week... I hope he reports back on its worth re pasta.

              1. re: zuriga1

                Ruby in Shoreditch do the most amazing pasta dishes to takeaway, but this is not very central... I would agree with Boca di Luppo if you have to be central

                1. re: kristaneon

                  Generally I believe it is eaten as a sit down meal, I have seen fast food pizza in Italy but never fast food pasta in all my visits to Italy.

                  1. re: UK2004

                    Well the Autogrills on the Autostrada are exactly that - fast food pasta in Italy and really not bad! But take away pasta in central London - can't really think of anything. If you're over Clerkenwell way maybe give La Porchetta on Rosebery Ave a try. They have other branches - I think in Holborn and definitely in Angel. And the original but that's in Finsbury Park. Our friend's daughter loves the one in Rosebery Avenue so we go there fairly often - to eat in - but I am sure they'll do take away.

                    1. re: themags

                      The autogrills that I have been to they still boil the pasta once you order I've never seen it ready mixed with sauce just sitting there, I have seen pizza like that but not pasta always seen them boil it in the mesh holders then mix with the sauce once it is cooked as opposed to the UK way of having it sitting under a heatlamp or even worse heated in the microwave!

                  2. re: kristaneon

                    Tried this the other week. Couldn't agree more. Really top notch and love how they make it in front of you. We need more of these!