The extremely popular Polpo is the brainchild of best friends Russell Norman and Richard Beatty.

Two years ago the first Polpo opened in Soho. The concept of Polpo is based on the Venetian wine bar: a humble restaurant serving sharing plates and great Italian wine. Inspired by the best Italian recipes, the food is simple but of outstanding quality. The menu offers a selection of classics like pizzette and risotto, comfort food like meatballs, and modern dishes such as mackerel tartare with flatbread. Service in all Polpo spin-offs is casual and slightly eccentric; there is no dress code for staff and many of them sport colorful tattoos. Reservations can’t be made so it’s always busy outside Polpo as people queue up for a table.

Curious about other hot concepts in London? Read the Food Inspiration Magazine.