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Recommendation | Mora – an authentic Italian restaurant

By Hannah – contributor to Girl About London – 25 May 2020

Why I love it: Authentic, romantic and personal

Expect: Incredible top-quality Italian food with the friendliest service

Value for money: 8/10

Perfect for: A casual, but intimate date night

If you’ve ever been fortunate enough to visit the gorgeous country that is Italy and experience the food it has to offer, then you will know how difficult it is to find authentic Italian cuisine anywhere else in the world that is just as enjoyable as the heavenly dining memories you have from there. The way the Italians do it is like no other. They cook with passion, love, and simplicity, no-nonsense – it always tastes like a work of art.

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I struggled to get my Italian food fix anywhere after my return from the Amalfi Coast 2 years ago. I craved that ‘buzz’ I had when I tucked into my gorgeous truffle linguine or wild boar ragu on the cobbled streets of Capri. Nothing was doing it for me, even the gorgeous upmarket places in central London. They were ‘nice’. And that was it. This was until I found Mora in Leytonstone.

I hadn’t heard about this place until I moved here last Summer. We decided to take a visit one Saturday for a date night. Luckily we reserved a table, as it was rammed when we walked in and they were turning people away due to it being fully booked! This place is not glam, it’s not flashy, it’s not what people may call ‘Instagram-worthy’. It’s real, authentic, and heartwarming. It’s not somewhere you need to throw your heels on and wear a dress for. It’s casual, but also has a romantic feel to it. This place is also very family orientated. Somewhere you would go for a celebration meal maybe if you want something that is a treat but also quite low key.

We were taken to our table at the back of the restaurant. We were sat quite near the kitchen. The interior and atmosphere itself are very basic, but this place doesn’t need glitz and glam for it to be wonderful. The service from the minute we sat down was personal. Greeted with a smile, our waitress instantly got to know us and made us feel at home. We were given the menu which changes regularly to a different region of Italy (which I think is wonderful). Sicily was this evening’s region. We were also handed a ‘truffle menu’. This was when I knew things were going to be very, very exciting.

Mora recommendation truffle pasta.JPG

Drinks: To start, we ordered wine. Obviously. To my absolute joy I saw that they stocked organic wine. I am a HUGE organic wine convert! I will happily pay a bit more for a nice, biodynamic/ organic bottle of vino over a cheap toxin infused one. It’s much more enjoyable and better for you! So we ordered a gorgeous bottle of Sicilia Grillo. It was spectacular. Such an easy, light wine to drink. Perfect for the Summer weather.

To start: We decided not to order starters as we were presented with a glorious basket of bread to nibble on. One of my favourite things to start a meal on is bread and oils (olive oil and balsamic). Dreamy.

For mains: Now of course I had to go for something truffle related. I ordered the truffle tagliolini. I can confirm, that for the first time since Italy…I GOT THE BUZZ. It was perfect. Perfect size, perfect creaminess, and the perfect amount of truffle intensity. I often find with truffle that places can go overboard and make it sickly, or be stingy and it tastes of nothing. Mora got that balance between subtle and rich, spot on. The truffle was freshly shaven onto the pasta in front of me. It was wonderful. The other half went for the lobster tagliolini and he was as impressed as I was. It was perfect.

Dessert time: We don’t normally get dessert, but we felt like we had to as all the food had been so incredible. We also don’t normally let someone else pick our food for us, but our waitress was so incredible and knowledgable throughout that we asked her to pick our dessert. She chose the pannacotta. It was perfectly fresh, and a sweet end to a fantastic meal.

And then, it was over. I could have stayed there all night. It was an experience I didn’t want to be over. And that word ‘experience’ is what makes dining out at a restaurant a memorable one. Mora is now shut due to COVID-19 but they are doing takeaway food which I can’t recommend enough. We enjoyed the most gorgeous takeaway on Saturday, it is the perfect option for date night indoors! Romantic, Italian food at its absolute finest.

For more information follow them on Instagram: @mora_restaurant or visit their website.

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