A couple of Sundays ago, after a rather hectic week, I took myself for a stroll around East London with my new camera for a bit of alone time. After a couple of hours walking I stopped for lunch at Burro e Salvia, a pastificio just opened on Redchurch Street in Shoreditch. In Italy, pastificios are tiny little workshops where pasta is made, and sold, fresh that day. Burro e Salvia continues this tradition. There is nothing fancy here, just simple, beautifully made pasta. At the front of the space is a workshop where you can watch the yolk-yellow dough being pulled and twisted into shape, and then take your pick from wire mesh trays under the counter to cook for yourself at home. All are reasonably priced, about £5 for a portion of filled pasta.
It is a beautiful, light space and I adored the attention paid to design details, from the origami-esque lights, to the simple white furnishings, and bright yellow accents. At the back of the shop is a small room where you can eat in. The menu is short, with a selection of antipasti starters, a couple of classic dishes, and a few weekly changing specials.
I opted for the agnolotti cavour, with burro e salvia (butter and sage). The perfect little parcels were filled with hand shredded and pounded meat (both pork and beef I think), spinach and parmigiano making for a rich, intensely flavoured filling. The pasta still had a slight bite to it, and the mellow yellow packages were coated in silky melted butter scented with sage, and dusted with more parmigiano. It was delicious.
I finished off my meal with a Moka (Allpress) coffee, served with a small jug of almond milk which is traditional in Sicily. I loved the creamy nutty milk in the coffee, and will soon be buying some to add a touch of Italian to my morning brew.
Beautifully cooked fresh pasta really is a thing of beauty. It doesn’t need fancy garnishes or sauces, and this is what Burro e Salvia demonstrates so perfectly. I don’t think I’ve had such good pasta outside of Italy before, and I wasn’t aware it could taste this good without the addition of sunshine and rosé wine. Incidentally it was a lovely place to lunch alone, something I enjoy but don’t always feel comfortable doing. I’m looking forward to returning soon, and this time taking away some pasta to cook myself.