80 City Rd, EC1Y 2BJ
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Behind two tall doors on City Road hides a huge all-day dining and cafe space, elegantly organised around an open and very busy kitchen. It’s much bigger than we expected it to be, but it shows that someone has thought about the energy. Because despite the vastness of the space, the waiters dancing between tables and Christmas parties in full swing all around us, the acoustics are very good and our dinner feels surprisingly intimate. The menu has all the usual Italian crowd pleasers: burrata, truffle pasta and tiramisu. But also some interesting and daring combinations that surprise on both balance and flavour. Try the BBQ whole cauliflower with pistachio, chilli and aioli – needless to say it’s huge and covered in delicious sauce, but it’s also an excellent way to fulfil the vegetable quota before moving on to the pastas and mains. Passo is easy to like, simple, straightforward, and tasty.