Guess who’s back…back again…Kinna’s back…tell a friend…
Not just your friends! Tell your family, partners, colleagues and enemies! Because I’m back after my short break ready to take London’s culinary scene by storm!
Last week I had the opportunity to visit Manitoba Tigella. Based near Tottenham Court Road, this Italian restaurant is serving up some unique and rather unfamiliar delicacies.
A modern eating space sprawled across two floors, this light restaurant is fresh and inviting – a seemingly great place to catch up with friends.
And what better way to catch up with friends than with cocktails? Cocktails in happy hour of course! From 4-8pm Manitoba offers 2 for the price of 1 on their cocktail menu. My personal favourite is their pineapple daiquiri which is served in a pineapple glass! How cool?!
Whilst enjoying all that Manitoba had to offer, I had the pleasure of meeting Head Chef, Marco Mannoni. With a career spanning over 25 years, his passion was formed in a rather anomalistic manner. As the story goes in Sardinia, Marco would often dine out with his girlfriends but whilst at these restaurants he would find himself meticulously examining the dishes thinking what he could add to make them better. Marco would see it as a game and realised that he could conceptually develop these dishes into something much more.
It was this desire which led him to England around 5 years back. However, when Marco arrived it wasn’t all plain sailing. Marco realised that although he was already an executive chef in Italy, the language barrier he faced would mean that he would have to take a step back and redevelop his skills in order to establish himself as a head chef. Marco began cooking at 5-star and Michelin star restaurants, including the Hippodrome Casino and under Marcus Wearing.
Then, in 2016, Marco accepted the position of head chef at a new restaurant which was looking to bring the authentic taste of Italy to London. In line with Marco’s vision – Manitoba Tigella was born!
But what is Manitoba Tigella you ask? Tigella is a circular shaped bread made from Manitoba flour. Originating from Modena, Marco and his team are the first to bring this delight to London. And I for one am rejoicing at the chance to eat Tigellas!
There are a heap of fillings to choose from and after much deliberation (so tough to pick a few as they all sound delish!) we went for the Prosciutto & Stracchino, Avocado King Prawn and Portobello Mushroom & Gorgonzola. How good do these sound?!
Whilst I was immediately drawn to the prosciutto and mushroom ones by my obvious love of cheese, I was thrilled to have ordered the king prawn – a perfect palette cleanser due to the crisp freshness.
All 3 were delectable! The flavours worked so well together and the tigellas themselves were tasty and soft! It was obvious that they were made fresh that morning!
Another gem of a starter has to be the Gnocco Fritto. It came highly recommended by the team and after just one mouthful I could see why. A light fried bread served with 30 months aged Parma ham, the Gnocco actually fondly reminded me of Gujarati staple, Puri. And whilst we don’t eat ham with puri at home, the combination was absolutely moreish.
Presenting La Carbonara and Ravioli.
The carbonara was pleasant but unfortunately missed that depth of flavour which I’m used to in such a hearty dish. Oozing with cheese, which as you know usually isn’t a problem for me, the lack of bacon running through it made this far too rich.
The ravioli, perhaps an unexpected pick by me, seemed like the obvious choice here. Freshly made pasta tossed with spring vegetables perfect for the current climate. However, it just fell short – I needed more vegetables and less tomato.
Overall, Manitoba Tigella delivers something unique in its Tigella combinations! They’re delicious and something I will definitely come back for again … After all, there are still many flavours to try! 😉
Thank you to Marco and Team for this Italian feast 🙂