There are so many options and such variety when it comes to restaurants on Bold Street and the Liverpool city centre street has in recent years become a bustling melting pot of international cuisine. Throughout all the recent changes, one establishment has remained a popular choice for 10 years now. Celebrating its 10th anniversary, The Italian Club is an authentic Italian eatery in the rustic style of a Trattoria — providing a slice of Italy in the heart of Liverpool. We visited on the eve of its 10th birthday to find out a bit more about its charm and why people keep coming back.
Once you come in off the busy street and walk through the door, you instantly feel as though you’ve entered a traditional Italian cantina. We visited on a Sunday evening after a busy day shopping in the city, so the relaxed, laid back atmosphere was a perfect end to our day. Upon entering, you’ll notice the grand, high ceilings and a simple, open plan set up with lots of light wood. You’ll find family photographs on the walls and novelty Italian decor pictures, providing a certain character and personality.
Open from 10am until 10.30pm, 7 days a week, The Italian Club provides a safe haven to escape to any time of day — whether you fancy breakfast, lunch, dinner, a coffee or a few relaxing drinks. Adding to its charm, various Italian breads, cakes, biscuits and other food produce are on sale to take away — if you like the look of some of the pictures, they too are available to purchase.
Once we’d had a look around, our waitress Carlotta showed us to our cosy table. We asked her about the history of The Italian Club and the story behind all the family pictures on the walls. The ethos of The Italian Club is to provide a place to enjoy for Italians, people of Italian descent and anyone who loves Italian food. The owners, Rosaria and Maurizio, are respectively from Picinisco with a Glaswegian connection and Bisceglie in Puglia.
Maurizio is also the Executive Chef for the group and the mind behind the fantastic menus and specials that his restaurants have to offer. He has a Michelin star background, having worked extensively in Italy and for some of the top London restaurants. The Italian Club Head Chef, Martino, is a very talented chef from Sicily and famous for his acrobatic pizza skills, taking part in many competitions across the world — the latest being in Las Vegas. Since opening The Italian Club, Rosaria and Maurizio have also opened The Italian Club Fish (further up Bold Street), The Italian Club Bakery (22 Newington, L1) and Panevino in Glasgow’s trendy West End.
We opted for a delightful Italian white wine, Pergolino, whilst perusing the very reasonably priced menu. To start, my partner had Prosciutto E Mozzarella Di Bufala (slices of Parma ham served with a whole buffalo mozzarella) whilst I enjoyed the Arancini Bolognese (Sicilian rice balls with saffron, peas and mozzarella, served with a tomato sauce and salad garnish). For our mains, my partner selected Agnolotti All’Astice (lobster grilled Agnolotti pasta served with shrimp, saffron and cream sauce, topped with spinach) whilst I enjoyed the My Spicy Cousin Vinnie pizza — a proper Italian pizza with thick dough.
Time seemed to escape us at The Italian Club, such was the relaxed atmosphere, and we ended up becoming the last ones in the restaurant. Before leaving we were able to talk more with the staff, who were all genuinely lovely people, and enjoy our desserts — vanilla ice cream and a latte for my partner, and a lemon sorbet for me. For a traditional, authentic Italian dining experience to take you away from the busy hustle and bustle of the city, The Italian Club is a must for those wanting a true taste of Italy in Liverpool. Oozing with charm and character, it’s clear to see why it has remained so popular for 10 years and it would be no surprise to see it continue its success for a long time to come.
Happy 10th Birthday to The Italian Club — Bellissimo!
The Italian Club
85 Bold Street
0151 708 5508
Images courtesy of Amanda Toovey