TOZI is a vibrant Italian restaurant and bar in London’s Victoria specialising in Venetian cicchetti (small plates) and classic Italian cocktails. Having opened in 2013, TOZI is the result of a collaboration between Chef Daniele Pampagnin and Head Chef Maurilio Molteni, who worked many years together at Soho House group and dreamt of starting their own restaurant project. All the dishes at TOZI are inspired by the casual dining ethos of the Veneto region, putting emphasis on quality, seasonal ingredients, sourced where possible from the best Italian producers. The food is designed to be shared amongst friends, family and colleagues in an informal, welcoming environment.
Maurilio Molteni is TOZI’s Head Chef, born in the Lake Como area, North Western Italy. Maurilio has spent 5 years running Italian restaurants in some of London’s most exclusive private member’s clubs including Shoreditch House. Whilst Maurilio’s cooking remains firmly rooted in the Northern Italian tradition, his career has seen him travel globally with positions in Amsterdam, New York and Switzerland.
The Venetian chiccetti menu at TOZI has a wide range of options to choose from. Prepared in the wood oven, try the classic bruschetta and pizzetta with a selection of cheeses and Italian ham. Grilled and baked dishes are prepared using fine Mediterranean vegetables and the most exciting selection of the meats and seafood. The cicchetti menu also includes other delicious small plates such as delicate salads, fritti, pasta, soups and other sides.
TOZI Bar features a range of classic and contemporary cocktails, including signature TOZI Spritz, home-made barrel-aged Negroni and Amaro TOZI served “straight from the barrel” as well as bubbles served on tap and biodynamic wines from across the country’s regions. Being served throughout Spring, TOZI’s retro floral cocktails contain a delicious blend of this season’s finest ingredients, fresh flavours and vibrant colours served with edible flowers. The retro cocktails hark back to the en vogue era of the 1970s and welcome in the spring with a visit to TOZI for a taste of Italy with a nostalgic floral twist.
TOZI offers the perfect atmosphere for guests can enjoy the full cicchetti menu at the bar, any time of the day, making it ideal for a mid-afternoon snack with friends and family or after work drinks with colleagues.
The SLOAN! Review
As far as Italian restaurants go TOZI is a vibrant restaurant bringing with it an authentic Venetian menu only a stone’s throw away from Victoria station.
As we arrived the restaurant felt warm and inviting, it was lovely to see the open kitchen and the wood oven as a statement piece which was visible from our table. It was interesting to note the foam cushion underneath the table which added to our comfort.
The restaurant was busy (even on a Wednesday night) it had a great ambience with a buzzy vibe, the waiting staff were very friendly and had good knowledge of the menu. They were so attentive that when I dropped my napkin on the floor (without my knowledge) a new one was brought to me without a fuss.
We were greeted with a glass of Prosecco which they have on tap at very reasonable rates and were told about the Venetian menu with the waiter suggesting six small dishes for two people. We were also given some bread to whet our appetite, it was interesting that the bread was made on site and it showed. The bread was beautifully soft and the seeded cracker is a must for nut lovers.
To start we had the Salami Piccante Pizzetta. It was spicy not too crispy and a good size, it was interesting watching the chefs hand make the pizza then make good use of the wood oven which you could taste adding an extra dimension to flavour of the pizza.
We then had the Calamari, Soft Shell Crab and selection of cured meats. The calamari was full of flavour and were perfectly spiced and salted. They tasted beautiful despite not having a sauce to complement. The soft shell crab came with red chilli and parsley sauce, the crab meat was delectably soft and the batter was light and fluffy. The parsley sauce made the dish more European in contrast to Asian fusion and was nice on the palette. The selection of cured meats came nicely arranged with a good portion of three meats, Parma ham, Mortadella with pistachio, and Coppa. The Coppa from the neck of the pig was the perfect contrast to the Parma ham which had the perfect amount of tantalising saltiness. The Mortadella was a nice addition as a complementing meat to the other choices.
At this point we took a look at the drinks menu. The wine menu complemented the restaurant by serving a good selection of Italian wine and beverages, it also had a selection of floral cocktails. We choose an Abbruzzo Rose and Peroni Gran Riserva.
To follow we had the Swordfish, Dorset Crab Linguine and Buffalo Ravioli. The swordfish came herb crusted with parsley, chilli and olive oil which flavoured the dish beautifully. It was interesting that the swordfish was grilled not fried so was a very healthy choice for those counting the calories. We had a half portion of the Dorset crab linguine which usually comes as a sharing dish. It is a beautiful dish perfect for a first date creating the Lady and the Tramp moment. It came with a good portion of white crab meat. The buffalo ravioli came highly recommended as a definite favourite and it shows as it has remained on the menu for the last two years and after tasting it you could see why!
For dessert we had the Bring Me Chocolate and a selection of sorbets. The Bring Me Chocolate dish was akin to chocolate brownie and was served with lime cream. The sorbets were homemade and you could tell. We had strawberry and mint, lime and basil and elderflower as our three choices. The flavours were full and fresh and a great way to finish a beautiful meal.
Below are some of our favourite dishes from the cicchetti menu.
TOZI is centrally located just a short walk from Victoria station. For a genuine Italian restaurant experience, please visit www.tozirestaurant.co.uk to make a reservation or call 020 7769 9771. TOZI is open daily from 12:00 to 22:30 Monday to Friday and from 12:30 – 22:30 on Saturday and Sunday.