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  • “But I appreciate the friendliness and atmosphere of the restaurant, and the concept is sound.” in 4 reviews

  • “Our party shared the fabulous warm marinated black olives, the green olives and the focaccia (brilliant with ricotta and honey).” in 3 reviews

  • “One friend ordered a potato gnocchi with basil pesto, which was yummy!” in 2 reviews

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  • 4.0 star rating

    Quick glance:
    + friendly staff
    + accommodating chefs
    + haven for vegetarian

    Full review:
    Amico Bio is a great vegetarian restaurant serving Italian style food, tucked away on one of the smaller streets near the Smithfield market.

    The venue is spacious and the service unhurried, which is great if you want a quiet place to catch up with friends over dinner. The menu lists a wide range of vegetarian options, as well as gluten free items for those with dietary restrictions. My friend was on a strict diet and had quite a few restrictions, and the waitress was really friendly and patient with us, going over the menu and recommending the suitable dishes. In the end the chef accommodated by tailoring one of the dishes on the menu to suit my friend's needs.

    The food itself was ok for me. I had the spinach and ricotta ravioli in Gorgonzola sauce, but the pasta was a bit hard and the sauce a bit on the bland and watery side. But I appreciate the friendliness and atmosphere of the restaurant, and the concept is sound. I would  bring my vegetarian friends around and give it another go.

  • 4.0 star rating
    1 check-in ROTD 29/12/2010

    The organic Barbera is fantastic!

    Great organic and vegetarian Italian restaurant, with wonderful food and kind service. Our party shared the fabulous warm marinated black olives, the green olives and the focaccia (brilliant with ricotta and honey). The veggie ravioli, the turnip top tagliatelle and the saitan carpaccio were all very good, and if we hadn't had to whisk our toddler home to bed I think that we could have happily stayed for Dolci and much more wine.

    Amico Bio you are wonderful and I will definitely be seeing you again :)

  • 4.0 star rating
    First to Review

    Quietly tucked away just outside of St Bart's lies a organic vegetarian/vegan Italian restaurant in the heart of Smithfield. Who knew?

    They advertise that most of their produce comes from a family farm in Italy and with a cart-full of the fresh and visually well-presented veggies by the entrance, I dare you to question it! I'm not a vegetarian but I do have many friends who are and my sister is, so I'm always on the lookout for a good place to go that has some good dishes that don't skimp out on flavour. Amico Bio certainly delivers with great home-made focaccia, raviolis (my fellow yelper had the broccoli ravioli and said they were great) and I had a roasted aubergine with some salad and garlic & rosemary potatoes... absolutely perfect. We even changed our minds at the end of our bottle of wine to try the tiramisu and it had a great coffee kick.

    You can tell this is a family affair, and some fellow patrons will likely be speaking to the chef in Italian, who will pop by your table personally to make sure you're enjoying your evening. What more could you ask for?

    I've stumbled upon this cute little place ages ago but kept forgetting to go back, but now that I know it's a winner (and quite reasonably priced!), I'll be dragging people to Smithfield more often. Support your good locals! This is definitely a great place for some legit Italian or a cute little stop for a date night.  Their wine selection is mostly organic as well, a good perk for anyone that typically gets headaches from the sulfites in reds, these will be much nicer to you the next morning!

    You'll get that dirty word that rhymes with Barluccio's out of your head in no time!

  • 5.0 star rating

    My boyfriend and I were on vacation in London last week and went here for dinner one night. OH MY GOD! My mind was blown!

    Our  waiter (who I believe is one of the owners) was extremely helpful in informing me what items were vegan. The food was mouth-watering good. It was the best meal of my life (and I told the waiter so)! I could have eaten everything on the menu; everything was so succulent!

    We ordered:
    the bruschetta
    polenta with mushrooms appetizer
    scaloppine di seitan alle
    crocchetta di patate
    For dessert, tiramisu (which I couldn't eat) and soy ice cream in espresso. We were also given a biscotti cookie and since I couldn't eat it, I was given apple slices. The portion sizes are just right, and I was full, but I wish we ordered more! There was a pumpkin risotto that I was eying that looked really delicious.

    I would go back to London again, just to eat at this restaurant!

  • 2.0 star rating
    1 check-in

    I was excited to finally try out Amico Bio. Having Italian friends who tried it years ago as well as recently, I was happy to have good reviews despite hearing it wasn't as good any more.

    The good! The ambiance was nice and the (only) server did her best to keep up as it became busier and busier on a Monday night,

    But the food was mostly a miss...

    The focaccia starter was COLD. Cold bread! My friend's aubergine & tofu salad was fantastic though.
    The cauliflower risotto had a handful of small cauliflower stems (not flowers) and did not taste like cauliflower at all. The whole dish was overpowered by chopped herbs. My friend's pumpkin gnocchi tasted fantastic, but the gnocchi I tried was undercooked and very gooey.

    The (vegan) ice cream was pretty good for being home made, and had a selections of coffee, vanilla, and chestnut (the best!). I'm also still hungry somehow.

    I probably wouldn't suggest to go here again, although if a group of people wanted to go, I wouldn't say no. I would like to give them another try, just not any time soon.

  • 3.0 star rating
    1 check-in

    The food here was really good. The one thing that made me not enjoy it as much was the horrible service! They were so slow and never checked up on us, so I am taking off one star. We were there longer than we expected.

    For an appetizer we shared a combo meal with different salads, soup, risotto, breads, pastas - it was very tasty! I loved the variety you get on the platter... perfect for the three of us that were sharing it!

    My main meal was a truffle tortellini with basil pesto. It was good but not satisfying. I wanted more of a truffle taste and the tortellini was a little on the hard side. The basil pesto made it delicious!

    One friend ordered a potato gnocchi with basil pesto, which was yummy! Wish I got this combo instead!

    My gluten-free friend had the best dish out of all of us. She had some tofu dish that looked like a burger patty. It was very tasty and crunchy. I wish I remember what it was called cause it was heavenly!

    For dessert I had the vegan cheese plate! And WOW... HOW DO THEY DO IT?!?! It was legit slices of cheese! Each vegan cheese had its own cheesy flavor. Nutty, strong, creamy... it tasted like real cheese! It was a lot in one platter so it was easy to get sick of eating it, but it was worth every bite. It also comes with raisin bread and jam. I loved adding the jam on the stronger cheeses to calm the flavor down with a bit of sweetness.

    The other two desserts we got was the vegan gelato and some strawberry dish with bread. The gelato was YUCK. It tasted like icy sugar, not satisfying at all. The strawberry dish was delicious! Sweet and sinful!

    Even though the service was horrible, I would definitely head back here again if I come back to London. The food was worth it and wish I could have tried more of it!

  • 3.0 star rating

    Like Lizzie below, I really wanted to like this place. It came recommended by a friend, and the fact that it's a veggie spot already gives it points.  The thing is, that the service is incredibly slow. We came here on our anniversary and we didn't want to spend two and a half hours just eating, if you know what I mean ;)
    The food was good, no doubt, and we had a 3 course meal on a £17 meal deal which I feel is good value. When I was being nosy I could see that other people had other deals like Groupons and so I figure that's why they were so busy.
    But peeps, family business or not, you have to improve your service. I think we were served by the patriarch who took little interest in us and spoke so fast that we felt embarrassed to ask him to repeat himself repeatedly.  4 stars for food, but 2 for service. Please do better - you really have the potential!

  • 3.0 star rating
    1 check-in

    Well...well...well...I am not sure as to how respond to this place: on the one-hand I agree with the previous reviews about this being a true local place with loads of charme and atmosphere (big, big plus for that). Also, I felt quite well taken care of by the waiting staff, who was very caring despite being swamped by too many customers. On the other hand, I was not convinced by the food...let me tell you why:

    Before coming here, I had already formulated huge expectations about this place: a vegetarian Italian restaurant...finally, I would be able to get a healthy meal full of veggies and other wholesome ingredients. That was not really the case...true, it was all vegetarian (and many of the dishes even vegan), but most of the food had been deep-fried, pan-fried and on top of that, had way too much salt in (or on) it. In fact, when I got home, I smelled like I had been working in a fish & chips place for the last few hours...only a long shower could get rid of that frying smell. That was a really turn-off...

    All in all, it was still a three star experience, as I had a lovely time and I really liked the atmosphere there, but next time I definitely want more true veggies on my plate!

    • Qype User bright…
    • London
    • 0 friends
    • 6 reviews
    3.0 star rating

    At first I thought that a vegan Italian restaurant was a bit too niche and probably going to be a bit of an anticlimax but this certainly isn't the case when you walk through the door and enter a really warm and cosy environment.
    Very nice food here but fairly over priced considering the very small portions that you receive. It's best to attend Amico Bio with a group of friends and treat the evening as a tapas experience. The restaurant houses a shop where you can buy different oils, flours, beans, and other savoury and sweet snacks (again, overpriced as most trendy East London places are but I'm not going to change the world in one review!).
    Staff can be a bit annoying  waiter didn't stop talking to us
    Probably wouldn't attend in a hurry but Groupon are now doing 2-can-dine offers including wine/prosecco, starter and main (starter can be replaced with a dessert, I think) for about £25.

  • 2.0 star rating
    1 check-in

    I love this place, at least I really wanted to. The menu looks amazing, the service was so family orientated and friendly even if it was a little slow and the whole place looks really cute. Unfortunately it was really, really... salty.

    I'm not writing this to be mean or cruel, this is a criticism of the foods seasoning. I feel like the big bad monster writing about a family run place like this with so much dislike for their food but, places must learn. I ordered what was recommended, the setan wrap with vegetables, which was really awful. After scraping the rock salt from the top I still couldn't bring myself to eat this. I then unwrapped the undercooked bready style pancake and tried to eat out the salty insides, gulping down water as I went.

    I tried other peoples dishes, they were over seasoned but not as bad as my plate. I must have been unlucky. I hate salt, I don't add it to anything I cook and when I'm out I enjoy the fact that salt and pepper are on the table and it's my choice if I want to put more of this stuff on. I'm thirsty just writing this.

    Amico Bio I will come back again and I will try something new because I really do want to like you, I will just make the request that you don't put salt on anything you serve me. Salt is a killer, please don't kill me or my food with it.

    • Qype User chriss…
    • London
    • 10 friends
    • 11 reviews
    5.0 star rating

    Amico Bio is a great first for me! an Italian that is completely vegetarian!!!.
    Having been around Naples, Genoa Florence Milan and and and.. Amico Bio felt very close to the real thing.
    My friend had Bruschetta plump flavour filled tomatoes, basil and very moreish!I enjoyed the courgettes another Italian delicacy just like the real thing.
    We then had fried caulifllower delicate florets encased in light airy batter.
    Finally the best a light creamy risotto with mushrooms pecorino and summer vegetables. Finger licking good.
    I urge you to try them out. Staff were lovely and friendly and informative do you know what 'seitan' is?
    I learnt all about it that night. Check it out you will not be disappointed.

  • 2.0 star rating

    Fantastic concept. But starters, main dishes, deserts completely tasteless. I was tempted to refuse the focaccia, which was a disgrace. Slow and unexperienced staff. Very short and strange selection of wines.

  • 2.0 star rating

    I very much wanted to love this place because the concept is lovely.  Vegetarian food, organic produce from a family farm, great location and ambiance, but...  Service was a bit hurried (only one or two people serving the entire place).  We did the Top Table deal (3 courses and glass of prosecco for 17£) and the first waiter seemed a bit put out by it.  I started with the cheese stuffed mushrooms (not bad) and then had the gnocchi with shaved truffles.  When I see truffles I think sumptuous and decadent, but the truffles were bland and dry and the gnocchi lacked flavor.  Desert was ok...I never got the second glass of wine I ordered.  So overall, didn't regret going, but wouldn't come back.

  • 4.0 star rating

    I was really excited to find this place while visiting London. It's an all vegetarian Italian restaurant with seitan options! The prices were quite good and the food was delicious.

  • 2.0 star rating

    Being vegetarian I really really wanted to like this place. Unfortunately this restaurant was a big disappointment. Another reviewer explained his experience as good and bad, mine was similar.
    Once again, armed with a Groupon voucher, I went on a balmy Friday night. The place was filled voucher-ites, as I could see the waiter explaining the voucher terms to almost every table.
    Decor/ambience: Very nice, was much like sitting in someone's front room. Warm with wood accents, my husband thought it was cramped but I liked the coziness.
    Staff: Excellent. Welcoming and polite without being overbearing.
    Food: Started well with delicious plump olives for me. My husband had a simple mozzarella and tomato salad, the mozzarella was salty which was not a good sign. Polenta & bean dish was good but not brilliant. Onto the third and main dish then.we waited 30 minutes after the second dish and I asked the waiter politely when our food was coming out. He explained that they had a small kitchen and were very busy tonight. I thought this was a crap excuse, particularly as with Groupon you have to book in advance, so it wasn't as if all these people simply showed up at their door. Essentially, they overbooked and weren't prepared. 35 minutes ticked bymy husband and I decided to download Battleship on our phones and start a game. Finally at the 45 minute mark our mains came out. My potato gnocchi with red peppers looked & tasted as if warmed up from frozen or microwaved or both. Gnocchi was very chewy and the sauce was gloopy and tasted overly peppery as if pre-made from a jar. My husband's grilled seitan with fried onions also looked & tasted as if it was from frozen and/or microwaved. The onions and greens were an oily slimy mess. We ate a few bits and left; the food did not sit well in either of our stomachs for the rest of the evening.
    Shame as I think if they had concentrated on serving quality food and not overbooked it could have been quite nice. I won't chance it again.

  • 4.0 star rating

    Just returned from eating dinner here with a friend.  The location is lovely, down a little alley--a very short walk from the Barbican tube station.  I had the special mushroom pasta:  very tasty and perfect portion although about four more pounds than the regular menu items.  Still, I was too stuffed to have dessert so that's a success in my book.  My friend ordered the seitan kebabs which she enjoyed as well.  Overall, it was a lovely evening, with a bustling atmosphere and warm, comfortable interiors.

  • 1.0 star rating

    I came here on Valentine's Day with my boyfriend. When he told them his name for the reservation, the waitress kind of grunted at him and showed us to a table. Then nothing happened. After about ten minutes, I managed to attract someone's attention and ask for a menu. A waitress brought us menus, then nothing happened for another fifteen minutes. No drinks orders, literally nothing. We were totally ignored. I know they would have been busier than usual on Valentine's Day maybe, but these are people who run a popular restaurant in the centre of London, they should know how to handle a busy night. Our reservation was at 8, and we left at 8.25 without having even ordered a drink. Terrible, terrible service. I was really annoyed because I'd been really looking forward to eating there.

  • 3.0 star rating

    As a vegetarian I was eager to try Amico Bio as I had heard a lot about it. I am writing this review after my second visit because I wanted to see if my experience improved at all. The food is okay, the service is incredibly slow, the food comes out very slowly between courses, and no one really tries to ask you if everything is okay or if you need another drink. I ordered the Arancini di riso mozzarella for my starter, Maccheroni alla Siciliana as my main, and Torta di mele for my dessert. The entire thing probably took about  2 1/2 hours to come between each course. The portions were sort of small as well especially if you were not having 2-3 courses but because I did it was more than filling. It's more of a casual restaurant I would say from the vibe of it. My pasta was a bit too gooey but the starter was very good. My friend got the Piadina integrale di seitan and said it was good but he was still hungry afterwards. I like the concept and I appreciate them creating a vegetarian restaurant but I think everything takes too long here and I usually enjoy chilling out at restaurants but more so after my meal not in between each course.

    • Qype User slatep…
    • London
    • 0 friends
    • 2 reviews
    3.0 star rating

    went for dinner there with my wife on a friday evening. i'd say it was good and bad really. we had a few starters and antipasti which were simple, well presented and tasty. deep fried cauliflower in batter, tofu with a cucumber and mint salad and arancini are to be recommended. however, both our main courses were disappointing. i had pasta with chard and chili and it seemed like that was literally all it was - quite bland tasting, a very watery sauce - if there was a sauce at all, and no noticeable seasoning. it's rare that i have to add salt to a main course in a restaurant but i felt it was a necessity here. it was the same for my wife. seven pounds is a reasonable price to pay for a main course but in this case i felt it was overpriced. my wife also asked a waitress a fairly simple question about the food and the reply was 'i dont know'. not good. the wine was very nice though

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