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What’s for Lunch? Sfizio Café

By tikichris Last edited 115 months ago
What’s for Lunch? Sfizio Café
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Londonist asks that most pressing of daily concerns: where to go on your lunch break.

Sfizio Café

35-37 Theobalds Road WC1X 8SP

Map

Average Lunch Price: £2.70 for one panzarotto

Rating: 8 out of 10

Londonist has a confession to make. Several weeks back, when we visited City Snacks for our first What’s for Lunch? review, we were actually planning to grab a quick bite a few doors down at Sfizio Café. Much to our surprise, the Italian patisserie was closed, boarded up and with no apparent sign of reopening. This closure was particularly saddening because, to best of our knowledge, Sfizio was the only place in town to get a proper panzarotto. Making the most of the situation, we were happy to discover City Snacks to offer a very good lunch. Oh well.

Panzarotti are the distant southern Italian cousins of the Cornish pasty, about the same size and with the same half moon shape. However, whereas the pasty is baked with a flaky crust, the slightly more decadent panzarotto is deep fried with a softer doughy shell. Filled with mozzarella, tomato sauce and perhaps another filling such as prosciutto or spinach, these monster-sized ravioli might be best described as a mix between a calzone and a jam-filled doughnut. Definitely not recommended for daily consumption, these heavy hitting, yet oh so delectable, gut bombs are worth the lunchtime indulgence every once in awhile, especially if you plan on skipping or having a late dinner.

Recently, we noticed Sfizio Café again open for business. So, we headed over to check things out and are happy to report that the café is still selling panzarotti. The only difference is that now the once cramped little café has a new, improved and twice as roomy dining area. As before the hiatus, the genuinely appreciative staff at Sfizio serve a full menu of Italian lunch options and pastries, which all look wonderful. But, if going for your first time, consider having one of the panzarotti (which can sell out fast!). These savory treats keep well too, and it’s not a bad idea to buy a few to throw in the freezer.

Photography by Tiki Chris © 2007

Last Updated 05 July 2007

eas_e

I love these things, but you can see the grease glistening in the photo. Gut bombs is right... but oh so good. Must check out the new digs.

guest

Can someone please do a write-up of my favourite lunchtime haunt, Euro Coffee House (81, Duke Street, W1K 5PF - near Bond Street tube)? It's a proper, old-fashioned greasy spoon caff, and it can't be beat.

siany

Chris, when you're typing, how do you get the accent over the 'e'??

Great post by the way!

tikichris

I usually start everything as a Word document, which will automatically correct some accented words such as cafe.

Cutting and pasting works too. See: é!

Hazel

Bloody hell, I've never heard of these things before but now I really want to try one! The amount of grease glistening on that thing in the picture is a bit frightening but I'm sure there will be plenty of people who would be willing to share one with me... thanks for the tip!

tikichris

Hazel,

The panzarotti from Sfizio are definitely worth a try. I would love to know what you think about them.

Cheerio,
Chris