VICO, 1 Seven Dials, Cambridge Circus, London WC2H 8PA
Dinner and ice cream
Value for money: 3/5
Recommend? – yes
Anybody who knows me knows that I love good food. LOVE. And I don’t mean fine, fancy, expensive food – although sometimes money can buy better taste – I mean quality, honest, simple, straightforward tasty food. And that can be found in any kind of place, and I love it more when it’s not an exclusive, pretentious restaurant.
And so it happened that I came across Vico. The younger, less formal sibling to Bocca di Lupo, located slap bang in Cambridge Circus, Vico has had a troubled start from the reviews I read, dated as recently as September/October. I was actually unaware of this when I came in, because I just saw the concept of reasonably-priced Italian street food and wanted to try it.
Vico has been recreated: the consciously-styled fast food place where you would grab your reheated pizza or arancini ball has been replaced by a proper restaurant which serves full meals. Pizza is a main feature on the menu, and I succumbed and took a seat. I had not visited when it was a Five Guys meets Napoli steet food mash-up, but the atmosphere now was perfectly pleasant. I ordered a Margherita Bufala on a Neapolitan base, and…
I stepped back into the summer, when I was eating pizza in Milan, in Florence, in Lucca. It was one of the best pizzas I’ve had in London, easily topping that of Pizza Locatelli (Locanda Locatelli’s pizza pop-up in Islington) and several other places.
The winning combination was the perfect base – chewy but crisp and not at all soggy (I could even bring my mum here) – and the sweet tomato sauce which made the slight lack of mozzarella bearable. It was just delicious.
It was reasonably priced: my pizza and soft drink plus 12.5% service came to just shy of £12.
And to add to perfection, they have an in-house Gelupo with amazing gelato and sorbetto flavours, including the incredible ricotta coffee honey (my favourite, with the dark chocolate sorbet).
What a good find, and I’m looking forward to coming back for another pizza soon.
Update, April 2017: I have not been back to VICO in a while, but to add as a caveat that they seem to be constantly evolving as a restaurant, so their menu and prices change. Last time I went, I had a tasty bianco mushroom pizza. However, we are spoilt for choice for good pizza in London! This has good pizza, but in my opinion it’s not the best. However, Gelupo is one of the best gelaterias in London and well worth the visit for that alone.