Il Monte is one of north London’s favourite Italian restaurants, with a lively atmosphere and an incredible menu that isn’t simply Italian – there’s a lot of family recipes on offer here, including many regional specialities from Sicily to keep aficionados of Italian-Mediterranean cuisine interested. Located up on Stoke Newington High Street, close to Rectory Road and not far from Stoke Newington stations, Il Monte is a vibrant, busy restaurant that deserves a booking.
On entering Il Monte’s Stoke Newington High Street restaurant, diners are immediately whisked
away from the grit and grime of north London and transported to an island of Italian hospitality
that’s all about downhome comfort and fine food. Flowers and candles on the tables – no red-
andwhitechecked tablecloths in sight, mind – a glassed gelato counter that tempts with dessert
even before your antipasti have arrived, and a general sense that you’re about to be treated to the robust dishes produced by an authentic Italian kitchen.
Two fantastic antipasti platters help kick things of at Il Monte’s Stoke Newington High Street restaurant: the antipasto di terra is loaded with mixed Italian salami, cheeses, and olives, while the antipasto misto spreads out Parma ham, artichokes, mushrooms, and mixed peppers for a colourful prelude to the main event. Il Monte’s kitchen has a Sicilian focus, so we recommend sampling their seafood dishes to take measure of the Mediterranean mettle of this north London Italian restaurant. The indecisive should go for the grigliata di pesce or the fritto misto, a grilled or a fried cornucopia of fresh seafood, while those with a little more focus might opt for the rustic sea bass, simply prepared with lemon, garlic, fresh tomatoes and white wine. And, given Il Monte’s Sardinian provenance, why not try the fresh grilled sardines? Then, it’s back to those gelati, or maybe the house tiramisu, for a fine finish to a memorable Il Monte meal.