“Let me take you for the best gluten-free brownie in London.” This is how I first found Mozzino – a miniature espresso bar, tucked down a side street off Carnaby Street. Look out for the vespa sticking out of the wall – how very Italian.
The coffee here is dark, bold and full-bodied – but there’s a lighter, fruity blend available for those who prefer a more mellow cup. A classic La Marzocco coffee machine sits proudly atop the counter, ready to turn UNION’s Revelation 3 origin bean blend – which are hand-roasted in London – into the drink of your choice.
The coffee menu sticks strictly to the Italian basics – as we all know, there’s no such thing as a mocha or caramel macchiato! However, you won’t regret going rogue and opting for Mozzino’s hot chocolate, which is smooth, sweet and utterly decadent.
But what about this brownie, I hear you ask? One of these shamelessly indulgent squares is definitely best shared with a friend, or risk leaving with a fairly substantial sugar high. But that’s no bad thing. It’s almost truffle-like in texture, made with rich and fruity dark chocolate and rippled with caramel.
All the cakes here are made by Italian food blogger, Katia. You’ll always find the Mozzino regulars – including a rich red velvet cake – while there’s also a continuously changing selection of seasonal bakes. As we move into spring, you’ll currently find fruity blueberry Portuguese custard tarts, boasting a smooth sweet and creamy filling cupped by buttery flakey pastry.
There are a few ‘misses’ on the counter – my almost croissant was dry and tough (benefit of the doubt: this could have been because it was the end of the day – maybe they should invest in some air-tight Tupperwear[!]), and the lemon drizzle could do with a little more zest.
Mozzino also offer savouries, including artisan ciabatta panini, filled focaccia, mini quiches and organic soups served with sourdough bread.
I’m a fan of the Caprese-stuffed tomato and basil focaccia, with thick slices of cool mozzarella and blushing tomato, and spread generously with a vibrant, chunky green pesto. You can opt to have your sandwich toasted – watch the cheese ooze!
Mozzino Espresso Bar
74 Broadwick Street
Open 8:00am-19:00pm (Mon-Fri), 10:00am-19:00pm (Sat) & 12:00pm-19:00pm (Sun)