London’s Dalla restaurant celebrates ‘simple pleasure’

Furniture plays a pivotal role in the modest dining spot

This Hackney restaurant might seem minimal, but look closer, and there are plenty of admirable Italian design details – curated by furniture dealer and owner Gennaro Leone of Spazio Leone.

Leone created the space in collaboration with artist and designer Oscar Piccolo and describes it as ‘the perfect environment for that simple pleasure’. It takes its name (and inspiration) from Italian musician Lucio Dalla, whose albums were the soundtrack to much of Leone’s childhood.

Cream and white painted walls, as well as white dining chairs and tables topped with crisp linen, create a laidback environment inside the restaurant, whose simplicity is meant to echo the familiarity and warmth of a Sicilian family dinner.

However, Leone has also brought in plenty of notable design pieces to subtly refine the space.

These include decorative mirrors by Gio Ponti through to a midcentury Stilnovo chandelier and a 1930s Piero Fornasetti fish painting tucked into a quiet corner of Dalla. Even the bathroom handles have been carefully considered, with hardware designed by Luigi Caccia Dominioni and hung with custom springs.

Other bespoke elements include wall lights and pedestals designed by Leone and Piccolo and fabricated in a Neopolitan workshop for the London restaurant.

Similarly, Dalla’s hearty menu is also deeply rooted in Italian heritage, with staples like handmade pasta and tiramisu featuring heavily on Chef Mitchell Damota’s menu. There will be seasonal variations: during colder months, dishes will pull on northern Italian cuisine, while lighter, southern fare will be on offer during warmer months.

120-122 Morning Lane, Hackney, London, E9 6LH

Read next: London’s Saltine is all about the rough-but-polished aesthetic

Martin Brudnizki unleashes maximalist glamour at London’s Broadwick Soho hotel



Share Tweet