Autumn in the city. And leopard print is everywhere. Blouses, dresses, skirts and shoes. Like a wildlife documentary - catching a glimpse of the modern working woman on her lunch break. And this lunch break feline likes espresso… Luckily she knows just the place.
Slipping through the glass doors and into the scent of dough being prepared, kneaded. The
cologne of a craftsman. And thats what they are here at Princi. Their signature round loaves balanced on the shelves with that name baked into them. Golden brown and dusted with
flour. A name that promises quality.
A smart, sophisticated Milanese bakery; Princi on Wardour Street has the buzzing atmosphere of Soho but with Italian taste - in their food and style. Founded by Rocco Princi in 1985, and brought to London by Alan Yau, with seven venues throughout some of the world’s most desirable locations including Milan, New York, Tokyo, Shanghai, Chicago, Seattle and London.
Princi prides itself on offering traditional Italian specialities, they describe themselves as creating “fresh food made with exceptional ingredients and an obsessive attention to detail. Inspired menus for every moment, from early morning to aperitivo.” These Italian specialities include artisan breads, pastries, focaccia sandwiches, pasta, salads and pizza - warmed in a masonry oven. And handmade desserts such as tiramisu, crostata fragola and cannoli.
Their pizza dough fluffy and and filled with the air holes of a light bake, smothered with tomato and cut into huge pieces. The margarita is all you need, this bread doesn't need any decoration of flavours. It’s warmed in front of you in a masonry oven then placed on a little brown tray, as one finds a seat within the office lunch meetings and coffee dates of Soho.
The interior is minimalistic; a long black marble counter and walls of sandstone blocks with chic communal dining on high stools. Modelled on the first bakery in Milan it architecturally captures the smart yet efficient city lifestyle. There is also a Pizzeria attached to the bakery, if you wanted table service and a more formal,relaxed environment which is open until midnight on a weekday.
“Most people come to Princi by accident, not by design; they were just walking by and suddenly noticed amouth-watering array of breads and Italian pastries through the restaurant’s bay windows” - Lonely Planet.
And lastly that espresso… Strong and aromatic. Like drops of sunshine that this feline sips and purrs deeply into the warmth coming from the demitasse... So as the October days get colder have an Italian love affair on your lunch break with this beautiful bakery.
135 Wardour Street
And newly opened...
53 Shaftesbury Avenue