Aldo Zilli at San Carlo Cicchetti

Celebrity chef Aldo Zilli has teamed up with Manchester’s multi-award winning Italian restaurant group San Carlo.

By Lee Isherwood | 18 October 2012

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Celebrity chef Aldo Zilli is teaming up with Manchester’s multi-award winning Italian restaurant group San Carlo.

Zilli has created a special selection of dishes for Cicchetti which will appear on menus in Manchester and London. Having joined forces with Zilli, San Carlo group is also looking forward to welcoming the famous chef’s old customers from his Soho restaurants Signor Zilli and Zilli Fish.

Commenting on the announcement San Carlo Group Chairman Carlo Distefano said: “With Aldo Zilli on board the best has just got better. Aldo is one of the most flamboyant figures on the restaurant scene. He’ll be bringing his great love of Italian food to our restaurants and a lot of fun too.”

Last night we were treated to an exclusive tasting of all the dishes, which I’ve listed below, and I for one cannot wait to see them on the menu. My personal favourites being the Sambuca Monkfish and the Risotto Calabrese; Potato Risotto with Calabrian Sausage. We complemented the dishes with a few glasses of Castello Di Corbara which I can highly recommend.

Sambuca Monkfish
Risotto Calabrese; Potato Risotto with Calabrian Sausage
Prawns Borlotti Beans and chargrilled Wild Chard
Orecchiette Porcini Vongole Clams
Carpaccio Di Tonno

Cicchetti London mirrors the luxurious interior of the award winning Manchester restaurant, featuring a stunning – and long – marble bar with unique ceiling lights and mirrored walls. The perfect location for informal dining, as with Manchester’s Cicchetti, London will also serve small plate dishes to share or eat alone, inspired by the cuisine traditionally served in the Italian region of Veneto.

Commenting on working with San Carlo Group, Aldo Zilli said it’s an ideal combination: “Working with this professional restaurant group allows me to express my passion and expertise and Cicchetti is my favourite kind of food – lots of totally delicious small tapas-style bites. I plan to introduce tastes and flavours to Cicchetti from all over Italy. I am very excited and proud to announce my involvement with Mr Carlo Distefano as he is a man that I respect greatly in business and likewise, he respects me for my cooking, so a great combination. Cicchetti, with its brilliant atmosphere and amazing décor has already gone down a storm in Manchester; it’s now set to become one of the great Italian joints in London.”

Cicchetti London is the brainchild of Carlo Distefano and son Marcello whose San Carlo group of restaurants are famous across Britain in cities such as Manchester, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool and Birmingham. Cicchetti is the Distefano’s second London launch after purchasing the prestigious Knightsbridge restaurant Signor Sassi, an establishment – popular with celebrities and international royals – famous for its simple, traditional and seasonal Italian food with a special focus on fish.

San Carlo Cicchetti Manchester, King Street West, Manchester. 0161 839 2233
Cicchetti Manchester, winner of MFDF 2011 Best Newcomer.
Shortlisted for two 2012 Best Restaurant Awards – Cheshire Life Magazine and MFDF Awards 2012.