There seems to be a trend in London pizzas places for being named “x Coffee Company.” ICCo is the Italian Coffee Company, where ECCo is the Express Coffee Company. I trust Italian over Express when looking to get my ‘za on. Yep, that was a pretty terrible sentence. Moving on.
I went to ICCo with Paul after work on a Wednesday. This tip-off came from my friend that I went to uni with. Its website claims it to be “London’s Most Authentic Italian Pizza”. Bold.
Like ECCo, it has a green colour scheme and quite a simple interior. Some say it reminds them of New York. It didn’t really remind me on New York, but I did like the relaxed vibe. I remember it being a bit loud. But that’s atmosphere. There were a couple of big ish groups waiting for takeout. Americans. Maybe that was the noise. And maybe that’s why it reminds people of New York.
It doesn’t remind me of Italy in vibe, but the smell did bring back the memories. It was a nice day out so most people, us included, were getting their pizza to go. There were still a fair few people eating in, and quite a few eating alone. I find something moderately sad about eating alone in a restaurant. I’ve never done it, but as I’ve gotten older and met more people I do understand that it isn’t actively a sad thing to do. Some people just don’t like cooking. That’s a hurdle that I need to jump across some other time (update 2016: I now fully understand eating alone in a restaurant. Necessity trumps awkwardness, and there is so much good food to try. I still rarely do this though).
We ordered at the counter, got some Snapple, and were handed a buzzer. The pizza didn’t take long.
I ordered the Capriciossa and Paul went for the Torcia, to spice it up. ICCo has the best menu of the pizza places that I have visited so far. Eat in and take out prices vary slightly as per the law, but with the most expensive pizza ringing in at £6.70, you can concede that these are all very good value.
The buzzer rang. We picked up our pizza. We left.
The smell was beautiful. I was particularly excited about eating this and officially starting my pizza quest.
Google maps said that there was a park nearby. It was a private park. We walked to Russell Square, which is a rather lovely park but a 15 minute walk away (we faffed around a little and got mildly lost) so by the time we got to chow down the pizza was only lukewarm.
But my goodness was it delicious!
I would agree that it is a very authentic Italian pizza (I would have to try every pizza in London to verify their claim that they are the “most authentic” in London). The toppings were generous, but not overdone. It was cooked to perfection, even if it wasn’t hot. And the crust was the perfect balance between crunchy and chewy. B-e-a-utiful.
Paul and I shared our pizzas. I definitely ate more. There were about four slices left, which we moved into one box and carried around for the rest of the evening. Russell Square needs bigger bins.
We then went on to a pub that Karl Marx apparently used to go to near the British Museum. Museum Tavern, Google tells me. It was perfectly nice, and didn’t seem to mind that we brought a pizza box in.
We headed South and Paul gave me the remaining pizza.
The next day I ate the remainder of the pizza alone at a bus stop in the evening before a gig. It was still delicious, and the crust had mostly kept its integrity and not got too soggy. I have no right to judge others for eating in restaurants alone when these are my eating habits.
Bravo to ICCo for being the highlight of two of my evenings.
ICCo – 8/10. A triumph. And well-priced to boot! I wish I could remember my Snapple fact. Snapple isn’t particularly widely available, hm. If you’re in the area, definitely ICCo > Franco Manca.
46 Goodge Street, Fitzrovia, London, W1T 4LU.