100 Draycott Avenue London SW3 3AD www.bottleswine.bar
Following on from its successful Old Spitalfields Market launch last year, BOTTLES has opened up a new site on Draycott Avenue.
BOTTLES Chelsea focuses on micro-producers, natural and fine wines alongside a relaxed and original food offering.
Bottles Group founders Franco Mancini and Daniele Marano have continuously striven to share their passion for quality Italian food and wine by creating unpretentious environments that place the emphasis on discovering new wines, exploring personal tastes and revisiting old favourites.
The new Chelsea site is light and airy behind an unassuming store front. The 50-cover wine bar features a bespoke timber wine, an impressive weathered copper topped bar with seating set alongside a full glass cheese and meat display. The white and blue tiled bar/dining area is elegant and welcoming.
The extensive wine list features an ever-changing range of styles, regions and indigenous grapes while also focuses on micro-producers in natural, biodynamic and organic wines.
Antonio Minuti and Edoardo Valeriani run the kitchen, serving Italian small plates with a modern approach and a Sicilian influence (Antonio was born on the island).
The menu offers a selection of snacks and small plates as well as more substantial dishes of pasta, seafood and meat.
Some of the dishes required us to ask for clarification and Diego, the maitre d’, was very helpful not only in recommending dishes but also matching them with some memorable wines, which included a Barbera Bianca.
Amongst the small plates, we particularly enjoyed the oddly named Blackmagnum, which Ã¢â‚¬â€œ in the shape of a magnum ice cream Ã¢â‚¬â€œ is a delicate salt cod morsel covered in black olives’ powder.
The lentil based vegan’meatballs’ were surprisingly good, topped by crunchy fried leeks. We chose to try one pasta dish, and we picked a wonderful freshly made agnolotti with almond cream and romanesco cauliflower, a perfectly balanced portion.
Desserts are where the chef seems to have more fun picking and mixing heritage Sicilian ingredients with some foreign influences.
We loved the’cheesefake’ made with almond ricotta and accompanied by a herby, refreshing, rosemary gel; perhaps too much thought went into a strongly flavoured but equally enjoyable cumin tartlet, cinnamon and chilly namelaka, candied squash in smoked whisky.
With service both knowledgeable and attentive. BOTTLES Chelsea makes for a different meal out with great wine choices.