Bibo Receives The Thumbs Up

Combining bar and restaurant Rebecca Mascarenhas newest restaurant opens its doors

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Bibo is the latest in Rebecca Mascarenhas’ stable of restaurants and from the buzz last Friday night it looks as if it is going to be another success. On the site of the former Wallace on the Upper Richmond Road, Bibo could be described as an Italian bar and kitchen. We started with a drink in the front bar area – there’s an enticing range of cocktails and wines by the glass – including the current drink of the moment, Sgroppino.

The staff were very friendly and efficient and were able to find us a table at short notice – despite opening only a week before, most of the tables were taken. Our good intentions just to have a main course disappeared when we saw faro arancini on the menu – delicious crispy rice balls made with farro, a grain similar to spelt. To follow I had the poussin with braised greens and lemon (£17.50), and my husband had the tagliarini nero with octopus, garlic and chilli (£14). A slight mix up when ‘ox cheek’ arrived instead of the ‘tagliarini with octopus’, was sorted out immediately without any fuss. I suspect it was our mistake, but the way it was dealt with was very impressive.

There is a good wine list and a particularly good choice of wines by the glass. The Lugana (a white from Veneto) was perfect, if a little pricey at £10 a glass. There were plenty of alternatives from around £4 - £6 and it was so good that we should probably have just bought a bottle.

Bibo is an ideal place for a drink or a casual meal. Prices are not bargain basement, but the cooking is well-judged and the service excellent. We will definitely be back.

Laura Polglase

March 12, 2014