Central London

Published on July 23rd, 2015 | by Sophia Longhi


Locale, Southbank

Locale, Southbank Sophia Longhi

Summary: Welcoming, relaxed and inclusive, Locale is a nice choice for affordable Italian food in a great location


Local Italian

Locale describes its style of restaurants as ‘neighbourhood dining’ and I think that hits the nail on the head. As I sat at my table in the Southbank branch, I looked around and saw such a variety of clientele: there were the Australian tourists next to me, both wearing matching holiday T-shirts; there were a group of girlfriends who had just ordered their second bottle of rosé; there was a couple holding hands over their table; and there was a father who was eating with his daughter, asking about her day at school.

It seemed like this was the kind of place where people could just drop in after work for dinner – casual and relaxed, with a lively buzz; it was 6:30 and tables were filling up quickly. Though, however laid back it seemed to be, the service was smart and quick, and our waitress, Valentina, was extremely professional and very knowledgeable about the menu. She recommended the chilli and garlic king prawns as one of her favourite dishes, so we ordered those, along with the scallops with pea puree and crispy pancetta.

Priced very reasonably, the starters were generously portioned and tasted good: the scallops were cooked well and came with plenty of pea puree and pancetta and the prawns were nice and plump, if a little lacking in chilli seasoning.

Locale Prawns

Pasta is the house speciality, as it is said to be made in-house every day, so I ordered an Italian classic, lasagne, for my main course and my friend ordered the 8oz 21 day aged prime scotch rib eye. Again, for reasonably-priced dishes we were happily impressed, particularly with the steak; it was perfectly-cooked, tender and juicy, without being stringy or chewy. The herb roast potatoes were great, too.

Quite full by this stage, we did manage to squeeze in a little dessert, with some help from Valentina’s very enthusiastic recommendation of the homemade lemon curd and cat tongue biscuits. Served in a little glass pot, it was indeed delicious and not too heavy after a big meal. We also tried a scoop of the chocolate ice cream – a very rich dark chocolate hit that was received very well.

Locale Steak

Welcoming, relaxed and inclusive, Locale is a nice choice for affordable Italian food in a great location. With a full cocktail and wine list, you can drop in for a drink and nibble, and sit outside on the terrace in warm weather. I think I missed a trick by not trying the pizza, however – they looked fab – and next time I will definitely be leaving room for the house favourite, Tiramisu.


Locale Southbank, 3B Belvedere Rd, County Hall, SE1 7GP

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About the Author

Lioneye Media lionesses, Sophia and Rebecca, can tweet with one hand whist sipping an espresso martini with the other. Dedicated food, wine and cocktail connoisseurs, they love nothing better than scoping out London for its best bars and restaurants. Follow their exploits and breakfast pics on Twitter @LioneyeMedia

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