Named after tiny legendary Italian speedster Fiat 500, 500 Restaurant in Archway brings you an excellent choice of top-notch Italian dishes. Fresh ingredients, bread and pastas prepared on the premises every day are key to the singular taste of 500 Restaurant on Holloway Road. With a changing menu that’s always taking into consideration seasonal produce, head chef Mario has some special dishes that he was asked to bring back time and time again. And you have never tried proper Italian food before you’ve tasted his oven-baked rabbit in balsamic vinegar sauce.
We know of at least two passions head chef Mario Magli has: one is the tiny Italian classic car Fiat 500, which gave its name to the Archway restaurant. His other passion would be the top-notch Italian cuisine that he routinely puts out with abandon. His restaurant 500 on Holloway Road is a dining place that sticks to the wonderful basics of Italian cuisine and varies them in ways almost unfathomable. Try the amazing Tagliere 500, a selection of cold starters and some cured meats. All their breads and pastas are handmade every day on the premises – it doesn’t get any fresher or more authentic than this.
500 Restaurant in Archway is trusted by a huge fan base of knowledgeable foodies and people that just wish to spend an excellent night out alike. As winners of Trip Advisor’s Certificate of Excellence they know what it means to create an ambiance that manages to cater to both gourmets and diners looking for a small romantic place. Go for their tasty gnocchi with Italian sausage ragu and ravioli. And don’t forget about Mario’s Tiramisu, which he’s quite proud of, and rightfully so.
The pasta and bread was freshly made and very tasty. The ravioli was among the best I’ve had. The staff are incredibly friendly and helped make the experience very enjoyable.
Great food quick service and reasonable prices in family run unfussy dining room. Will go again. Good wine list too and discounts for early sitters who are out by 8pm
IN SHORT: DELICIOUS FOOD AND GREAT WINES FROM ALL OVER ITALY WITH A GOOD SELECTION OF SARDINIAN AND SOUTHERN ITALIAN WINES. EXCELLENT AND FRIENDLY SERVICE.
Really great food, wine, atmosphere and staff. Maybe an easy place to walk straight past, but don't! We went on a recommendation and weren't disappointed......Starter sharing platter for two was great and so was the rabbit and the simple ice cream for pudding. Friendly and understated. Fab!
Being Italian, I hardly ever eat in Italian restaurants in the UK, as I find their menus unimaginative and the usual rehash of well known dishes. 500, however, has taken the road less travelled and produced a menu to rival any high quality local restaurant in Italy. At one point, as I was eating my delicious roast rabbit with roast potatoes, I had to remind myself I was on the Holloway Road & not in my dad's dining room back in Umbria. My broad beans soup was equally delicious, as were my partner's venison ravioli & my son's strozzapreti with slow cooked beef sauce. Good size portions were also a big plus. I'm looking forward to going back to 500 to try one of the very appetising fish dishes on the menu!
As always, a delightful experience. So nice to have a good local restaurant with a chef who likes to try out new dishes and then cares what his customers think about them. For example, he's added a lovely Fritto Misto of fish and shredded courgette to the starters. A real gem of a dish. When he came round at the end of dinner to see how people had liked their meals, he said that he'd originally had it as a main but people weren't interested. So he turned it into a starter and it was proving hugely popular. In the meantime, a starter I had previously reported as not nice at all (the waiter said I wasn't the only one) has disappeared. That's the kind of flexibility and originality that make 500 such a great restaurant. Plus they buy really good ingredients. One of my guests pronounced the beef some of the best he'd ever had.
I have been going on and off to this restaurant from very soon after it opened. I love it. Their food is great, authentic genuine Italian regional food, menu changes regularly, quite simple dishes, high quality ingredients. incredible value as you would pay a lot more in the West End, great value wine list and friendly professional service. Unfortunately there is one very small point that is a serious problem and causes many of my friends not to go there. It is a very small restaurant and very very noisy. If there is a party or large group there then you cannot have a proper conversation with the people on your table and this spoils one's enjoyment. I regularly tell the staff to invest in a carpet or something and they smile at me, but it really is a big problem. Very very unfortunate as this is an outstanding restaurant.
We love this restaurant and go there fairly frequently. The staff are wonderful but the food can vary a bit and this time wasn't the best we've had. For the first time in my life, I sent a starter back. It wasn't that I didn't like it, it was actually inedible (others in the party agreed). The waiter acknowledged it wasn't to everyone's taste and that others had disliked it so I wonder why they keep it - raw scallops marinated in campari and orange. I had expected something vaguely ceviche-like but the the campari and orange gave the scallops a really awful bitter taste. They were incredibly nice about it, produced an alternative (delicious) immediately (didn't charge for the rejected scallops) and the rest of the meal was very pleasant. Not amazing - as it has been on previous occasions but nice enough. I'd still recommend 500 as it's great value and a lovely atmosphere. It would be nice to be 100% sure of the food though.
The place was small, nice but small, and very quite since my husband and I visited at 7pm on Friday evening. Service was friendly and attentive, but as I said there were less then 10 customers. The food is not great, just average. We managed to taste all the starters and I have to say we weren't impressed. The cantaloupe melon was tasteless, so was the tomato with mozzarella (no heritage tomatoes as they say on the menu, just a basic and tasteless tomato). No dressing, no extra virgin olive oil, no salt... and you need some dressing when the ingredients are not top quality. Vitello tonnato are very cold, straight from the fridge, and its sauce wasn't enough to dress it pleasantly. Crabmeat, again, no flavour. Also, we had pasta with monkfish. It was ok, al dente, but too much salty for my taste, not well balanced, especially after all those blend starters. In a nutshell: not so bad, but I wouldn't recommend it.
Having just read about this restaurant in Quandoo last night, I decided to try it out this evening. It's a great little Italian restaurant serving excellent quality food and wine with quite a different menu to the usual. The seafood stew, on a plate, was a great combination of seafood, cooked perfectly, and other great flavours, although there was just a little too much garlic for my taste. It's the sort of dish that you want another one of straight away. Wines were varied and good value for small glasses and bottles - a nice change. Try the plate of Italian cheeses - lovely quality served at a good temperature. Great all round with very friendly people and I'd go back there tomorrow.