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Tight Look, Loose Portions

July 27, 2015

Why is it the prettier and more powerful the patrons of a restaurant, the smaller the servings? Certainly at some of the capital’s more see-and-be-scene sup spots wallet-busting main meals get you little more than a morsel of fish topped with a spring onion frond (here’s looking at you, Nobu).

Not so, however, at new Italian-French salon Florentina. Owned by Sino movie star Li Yapeng, designed by Emma Maxwell, and helmed by European chef Philippe Uzan, this chic Lido lovely proves that even slender starlets will go for some diet-damning comfort food on occasion. 

As attractively attired as its glam clientele, the smart 80-seat dining room rocks on-trend chevron stripes, gilded lights, cushy tub chairs and a long wine-lined bar, but at present, it’s the oh-so pretty patio that really packs out.

Shaded by box hedges and large parasols, lunching ladies and power players settle in for plus-sized red sauce staples like the gargantuan calzone – a whole pizza wrapped around a second semi-cooked base and stuffed to splitting with mozzarella, parma ham, tomato sugo and fresh eggs. Then there’s the equally sizable salami board, which ought to be tackled by no fewer than four famished carnivores.

Less daunting are the homemade pastas and comparatively dainty desserts like classic panna cotta and fresh fruit sorbets. If you even have room, that is. Loosen that belt, pronto!

1/F / Bldg 2 / 6 Fangyuan Xi Lu / Lido / +86 10 8431 0027 / lunch & dinner daily

© All photos courtesy of Emma Maxwell Design