We are always happy to receive reviews of our two restaurants in North London – Casa Tua Camden and Casa Tua King’s Cross. Read what David Harfield, a freelance food and travel writer had to say after visiting our Italian restaurant in King’s Cross.
“Everyday is like Sunday…” Ah, Morrissey, how aptly you soundtrack our lives. Now, any Mozzer fan (and if there’s one group of music aficionados that you don’t want to get on the wrong side of, it’s them) will inform you that the lyrics to his second single as a solo artist were actually inspired by a novel about a group of people awaiting nuclear devastation in Melbourne, however, I, and I’m sure many others, have appropriated them to fit any lazy day in which you find yourself, happily, with not a lot to do. When I visit the new Italian eatery Casa Tua at King’s Cross, with its sun-kissed piazza, leafy surroundings and relaxed yet bonhomous energy, this sentiment attaches itself to me and doesn’t leave until well after I’ve bid the friendly staff goodbye and strolled back towards the canal, only then remembering that it’s a Thursday and there’s still work to do this afternoon.
Italian Restaurant in King’s Cross – Casa Tua
Don’t expect any depressing dirges to be playing when you enter the uniquely decorated bistro though, as even the soundtrack seems to have been handcrafted to suit the tone of quirky chic; old school jazz, soul and rockabilly numbers fill our ears as the vibrant furnishings fill our eyes (our favourite: a red piano that’s just begging for Elton John to pop by and play in another one of his impromptu King’s X performances). With natural light flooding the interior, the locale is straight-up European, right down to the couples sipping espresso on the multicoloured tables outside. A downstairs area reveals even more interesting décor, including a gigantic Henry VIII-type table that would be perfect for a relaxed business meeting, especially due to the inspirational quotes that are dotted around the walls that a team leader could crib from if they forget their notes.
The effortlessly charming staff make us feel like one of the family within minutes, a notion that I also felt when I first discovered their flagship café in Camden over a year ago. We perch on the high stools near the window and order a slap-up brunch, slurping a beautifully presented cappuccino and a long green juice that seems to contain our five-per-day and then some. Considering we’re only a five-minute walk from the bustling mini-metropolis of King’s Cross’s newly regenerated Granary Square, where big names such as Granger & Co. and Vinoteca duke it out on the forecourt over who can attract the most footfall of businesspeople, the venue seems notably anti-corporate with the boutique feel of a group of friends who have built a dream themselves as opposed to relying too heavily on faceless investor funding. This only serves to enhance the appeal of every day feeling like the weekend: welcoming, amenable and thoroughly chilled out.
The food arrives and we’re impressed by the simple but pretty layout of the eggs florentine, the crispy breadcrumbs on the asparagus spears and the deep, molten yolks of the eggs; with an accompanying glass of dry Prosecco, this is a particularly fun way to start the day (especially if you woke up nearer lunchtime like we did). A linguine carbonara is also delicious, the scattering of ham hock segments adding a saltine chewiness to the thick ribbons of pasta; we toast the meal with a glass of Montessu 2013 whose dark ruby intensity adds depth to the already flavoursome dish.
A few espressos later and we say our farewells, vowing to return soon to sample the Puglian-inspired cuisine that’s served in the evening. In addition to the well-stocked cocktail bar that I want to put through its paces, I’m particularly curious about the aperitivo that pairs classic libations such as Spritz with pre-dinner nibbles, grazing platters of Italian meats, cheeses and breads that I could feast on all night given half a chance.
I’d recommend it to anyone who’s in the area and wants kick back like it’s Sunday; it may even put a smile on the face of the world’s grumpiest vegan, should Morrissey ever find himself stuck for a bite to eat in King’s Cross. But don’t just take my word for it; to quote the master of misery once again, “Why don’t you find out for yourself?”