Italy, rather, Eataly is coming to London. And how!The Italian colossus Eataly has confirmed the opening of a gargantuan 42,000 square-foot food hall billed as the ‘UK’s largest Italian food emporium.’ Imagine walking into a building that brings you the freshest, most delectable Italian cuisine known to humankind without having even to take a flight.Within Eatery’s food hall, you can buy directly from a butcher, a fishmonger, a cured meat counter, a bakery and, no word of a lie, a cheese laboratory! If Willy Wonka did Italian food emporiums.For those looking for something to wash down their mascarpone, London’s most extensive Italian wine cellar will also be housed on-site, with more than 2,000 bottles available from various grapes. London’s independent coffee scene has just had a boost, too, as you won’t be surprised to hear that an Italian coffee bar will be housed on-site, serving up a range of espresso, filter, and speciality coffee drinks crafted using fairly sourced and expertly roasted single-estate beans.For lovers of all things Italian, few places outside of Bel Paese offer customers the chance to enjoy such exquisite cuisine from home. But Eataly is far more than just a one-stop supermarket for those looking to impress dinner guests.Those that visit before May 20th will enjoy Eataly’s soft opening, meaning they can only access the market and retail areas, as well as the outlets that offer takeaway cuisine and have suitable outdoor dining space, which is aptly named as ‘La Terrazza di Eataly.’
The terrace bar is the perfect place to enjoy a cool glass of spritz in the surrounding area of Liverpool Street
Bookings for the terrace can be made online, and given the hype about Eataly’s launch, it could well be worth your while. ‘La Terazza di Eataly’ is one of two terraces planned, and when the site opens to total capacity in May, there will be three bars, three restaurants, six micro eateries, and a cooking school!
Two of Eataly’s three restaurants will open from May 20th, with only ‘Terra,’ the most refined dining destination of the three, expected to launch sometime in September.
But from April 29th, Liverpool Street will be subjected to somewhat of an Italian takeover. Visitors can enjoy pizza, pasta, gelato, cannoli, and pretty much anything else you could possibly expect to see on the menu of an Italian restaurant.
So, what’s the story behind Eataly? Why has nobody ever thought of this before? Well, Eataly is a hugely successful enterprise, and the company’s foray into the London gastro scene will see them open their 43rd site. A portmanteau of Eat and Italy, the name couldn’t be more appropriate.But there’s so much more to this quirky brand than just the provision of high-quality Italian fayre. As well as premises in no fewer than sixteen countries worldwide, Eataly even boast a theme park. You heard us right, a theme park!Replete with truffle-hunting dogs, food-themed rides, and cookery masterclasses, the ‘Disney World for Food Lovers’ is a twenty-acre site in Bologna dedicated to Italian agriculture and food production. While Londoners may not be able to enjoy the thrills and spills of an Eataly theme park, the arrival of the brand is something for us Brits to get excited about. Long-time lovers of all types of pizza and pasta dishes, we are about to welcome an emporium that has it all and much, much more.Speaking about Eataly’s UK launch, CEO Nicola Farinetti said: “We are delighted to open our Eataly London doors to bring our love of Italian gastronomy to the UK at a time when consumers and hospitality professionals appreciate and need it the most. Eataly was founded with a vision to bring the biodiversity, craft, and different layers of culinary experiences of Italy together under one roof, under our motto of ‘Eat, Shop, Learn.’’
It’s undoubtedly something to get excited about at a time the country needs it the most. As we’re well underway on our government’s so-called ‘roadmap’ out of lockdown, the opening of Eataly coincides with the gradual re-opening of other eateries and hospitality venues across the city.But this isn’t something that’s just been thrown together at the height of these incredibly difficult times for the hospitality sector. In fact, Eataly’s plans to open a UK emporium have been in the pipeline since 2017, meaning the project has been four years in the making. Few will be surprised, then, that Eataly’s fayre is expected to be mouth-watering. Judging by their success in America, it seems like a natural step for the company to take on the British market, given many of our culinary similarities to our brothers and sisters across the pond.
Whatever happens in the next couple of weeks, this summer will see Londoners enjoy ‘La Bella Vita’, thanks to Eataly’s grand launch. Hopefully, Liverpool Street and the surrounding areas will be packed full of visitors enjoying the sunshine and the freedom to explore once again.To find out more information about Eataly and to check out their extensive list of foods, wines, and delicious treats that will be served up in the coming weeks, be sure to check out their website.Alternatively, you might not be planning a summer break to the Amalfi Coast or Lake Como this year, but fear not; you will be able to get your Italian food fix in the heart of London by booking a table at one of the many eateries within the emporium. However you enjoy it, just make sure you do. It’s a tantalising proposition and something that Londoners are ready to make the most out of.
Eataly opens the 29th April 2021. Be sure to check their news page for updates.