Caponata, Delancey Street, Camden

My boyfriend and I had not seen each other for 24 hours, due to our conflicting work and play schedules. So, Saturday night we decided to out for dinner for a nice catchup meal which meant no home distractions or washing up involved. I really fancied some hearty Italian food as I was still fragile from Friday night work drinks and needed carbohydrates. I decided to take my boyfriend to an Italian restaurant I had walked by a few times after work called ‘Caponata’, which is a typically Sicilian dish made of aubergine, capers and olives.

Situated on Delancey Street, just off Camden High Street, Caponata is a little gem of a restaurant. This Sicilian Ristorante, Osteria and Bar looks sleek yet welcoming, with lime, white and deep plum coloured tables and chairs. The restaurant is situated upstairs but we decided to stay in the bar area, where other people were dining. We were actually seated in ‘The Courtyard’, a charming extension to the bar area, with a leafy wall and high ceiling with retractable roof.

Our table was small and round but created an intimate feel and it was nice to be able to reach across it and hold hands with my other half. After all,this was the whole point of this meal!

A friendly (Spanish) waitress served us and was very nice and accommodating. The menu was simple and very Italian, with the traditional Antipasti, Primi, and Secondi courses. Having been to Naples and tried eating all the different courses, we had decided it wasn’t for us: way too much food for one meal. So we narrowed our choice down to one dish each. I had the Risotto Balls – an interesting concept where the risotto vegetables/cheese are surrounded by rice and then the ball is coated in breadcrumbs. The 3 balls had different stuffings: ham and mozerella, beef and pea stew and spinach and mozerella. An interesting mix! The boy went for the Butcher’s cut which consisted of liver, beef and lamb bits, seared and served with roasted aubergine and carrots. It was amazing! (luckily neither of us mind sharing which is good because I always want to try what other people have chosen!)

The portions were just right, the food, beautifully presented and the meal a success. Caponata offers affordable, beautifully presented food in a setting which gives you a sense of occasion.

Since being there I’ve found more wonderful things about this charming venue. It offers live classical and jazz concerts most evenings of the week in their courtyard as well as Jive, Samba and Swing lessons every Friday night, followed by dancing with a live band! How cool is that? Must check it out on a Friday next time :)

Caponata also offers a hearty brunch menu so it’s really worth a visit on weekend mornings when you need some filling food to soak up the night before’s alchol!

Caponata, ti amo!

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