Hai Cenato

4.0
579 reviews
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£26 to £40
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Italian
Top tags:
  • Pre/post Theatre
  • Casual
  • Good for a Date
Hai Cenato is a NYC-Italian restaurant & bar in Victoria's NOVA complex. Translating as 'Have you had dinner?' in Italian, Hai Cenato serves up lunch and dinner seven days a week. Inspired by New York-Italian cuisine, the menu spans small plates, pasta & risotto, grills and sourdough pizzas. Upstairs, cocktail bar The Drunken Oyster serves classic Italian cocktails with a twist and sparkling 'taptails'. Please note that we only have the afternoon menu available between 2:31 p.m. and 5:29 p.m.
What 579 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.0based on recent ratings
4.0
food
3.9
service
3.8
ambience
3.5
value
Noise · Moderate
74% of people would recommend it to a friend
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ME
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent, attentive and polite service and mouthwatering food.

SS
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Had a lovely meal - thought it was reasonably priced. The staff were friendly and attentive.

LK
London
6 reviews
Dined on 15 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the margarita pizza and a drink deal for£9 before 6pm. Followed by 2 cocktails for a tenner all in the Oyster bar. The pizza was fabulous, the staff were lovely and the ambience in the Oyster bar was laid back and perfect for a catch up with an old friend. I'd definitely go back and have already recommended to friends and colleagues.

PA
Yorkshire
2 reviews
Dined on 15 August 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

We booked the restaurant as a treat for my birthday. The risotto starter was nice. The wine was nice. The main course was not. My pappardelle was not evenly cooked, some was fine but some was very hard & dry. The ragu sauce seemed to be over reduced, too rich and salty. The pizza was soft around the edges and pretty soggy in the middle.
The panna cotta (free to make up for my complaint) and coffee was nice.
So, a bit of a mixed bag. Unlikely to return.

AS
London
1 review
Dined on 15 August 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

Lovely pizza, a bit slow service (10 minutes wait for one scoop of kids’ ice cream in a waffle at £3.50). Pretty waitress but I am not sure why she said “my name is x but you can call me anything” 🤔 The black waiter was very nice. Overall, we expected more.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 14 August 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Really nice place, service in the restaurant outstanding.
The place seemed rather too casual clientele almost reminding of Frankie and Bennies. Asked waiter for a president cocktail got told as it’s not on a menu can’t make it as wouldn’t know what to charge.

KV
County Durham
1 review
Dined on 13 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fabulous restaurant - great service, amazing food - highly recommend and will be coming back!

EB
Gloucestershire
2 reviews
Dined on 12 August 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 2

Recommend only in relation to distance from theatre. Food was good. No flexibility with menus, pre theatre and regular we wanted starter off one and main on other but couldn’t do that, we wanted starter as main size couldn’t do that. Portion sizes quite small but adequate. When booking mentioned it was my daughters birthday they said happy birthday but didn’t do anything, most restaurants would put a candle in an ice cream or something. Fine for pre theatre meal.

j
London
20 reviews
Dined on 10 August 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Our son's margarita pizza was great. But that's about the extent of the praise, sadly. Very average beef papardelle - and a tiny portion for £16 - and my wife's pizza bianca was unremarkable. The unusual toppings didn't work; putting potato on a pizza was as unsuccessful as you'd imagine it would be. Overall we were disappointed - not quite sure why Jason Atherton would put his name to this place, and I'm sure he'd be mortified that the standards were not up to his usual. If going again I'd go up to the bar upstairs and take up the margarita pizza and a drink for £9 deal - that's far better value.

BM
Liverpool
2 reviews
Dined on 9 August 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

First time visiting and thoroughly enjoyed it. Food was good and reasonably priced good atmosphere for a Friday night too.

SE
London
1 review
Dined on 8 August 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

The Macaroni cheese was incredible! So tasty and I wish I had more! The side serving of chili and almond Broccoli tasted amazing! Will definitely return!

LM
1 review
Dined on 6 August 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Not my idea of a 'New York style Italian restaurant '. Pleasant enough staff but food was mediocre: taste and portions.

OT
London
9 reviews
Dined on 31 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Lovely food and atmosphere, friendly staff. Great place for a catch up with friends.

S
London
1 review
Dined on 30 July 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Italian food is rich with flavour and cooked with flair. The food here was neither.
It wasn't terrible, I just don't know why an apparently good chef would put his name to a project as formulaic as this.

YO
London
1 review
Dined on 22 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Really good food although portions of large/small pasta make the value of the large size questionable. Otherwise, great experience, lovely vibe and good service.

PB
London
71 reviews
Dined on 18 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We enjoyed a few cocktails and had a very tasty meal. Been here a few times and would definitely go again.

SR
London
1 review
Dined on 16 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great meal here pre-theatre. Pizzas were large and absolutely delicious. We also had some shared starters which were excellent. Service was efficient and prompt meaning we could enjoy our meal without worrying about time.

S
Las Vegas
17 reviews
Dined on 14 July 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Apple and Gorgonzola salad was average . Dressing watery, no real flavours.
Pizzas were served cold so were soggy in middle. Pumpkin pizza was tasty but not sure why they were served cold. Not as if it was busy.
We asked for food to be served family but a good chef and waitron would've served pizzas as soon as they were ready and then followed with the pastas and risotto .
Linguine with seafood - awful , lacked seasoning g and again cold . Risotto was ok, again flavours profile lacking . Penne Arrabiata was divine .
Broccolini was awesome . Of all 5 entrees only the pizzas and penne were worth ordering again. Cannot recommend based on good. Waitstaff were very friendly , polite and proffessional.

JW
Surrey
2 reviews
Dined on 12 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

I chose the halibut crudo, which was swimming in citrus and very sour. You could not taste the delicate fish. I could not eat it and was pleased to have it exchanged for the beetroot, which was delicious. Macaroni cheese was very dry and disappointing, however the risotto was outstanding, as was the pannacotta. We would come back and choose these dishes. Service was excellent and very friendly.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 11 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Birthday dinner

Gin and tonics expensive
All food great value

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 10 July 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

This is more appropriate for casual dining or an after work dinner with colleagues rather than for a special occasion. The restaurant is very noisy and bright with lack of intimacy, or at least it was where we were seated (even though I had stated at the time of booking that we were celebrating an anniversary). We ordered a selection of starters, small pasta dishes, a main course and side dish to share. Bizarrely, all the food was brought out at the same time, meaning that we were trying to eat our starters as quickly as possible, conscious of the fact that our pasta and main course would be getting cold. The pasta was very over-seasoned, whilst the veal Milanese was slightly under seasoned. We were most impressed by a very generous side of tender stem broccoli. The ambience was lacking, food was average, the drinks were better. Overall the experience was ok but nothing to write home about. Given that there are many other modern Italian restaurants in London that are much better (and maybe slightly cheaper), I would not go back to Hai Cenato.

S
London
3 reviews
Dined on 9 July 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Really like Jason Atherton places. This one was poor. Had to return gnocchi as there was v little sauce and gnocchi were quite dry.
My friend s risotto she said was also average.
Sorry to say as his other places v good imo

t
London
36 reviews
Dined on 7 July 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

This was our second visit to Hai Cenato. It’s been a few months since we last came, so I was disappointed to see the menu had changed very little. We all ordered pizzas, and while the toppings were good quality and generous, we were all left a bit underwhelmed and my friend found his pizza so spicy he had to pick off chunks of red chilli (he is by no means a fussy eater!) I probably would go again, but I won’t be rushing back when there are so many other options in the area.

HM
1 review
Dined on 3 July 2019
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

Delicious food and well sized portions but the service got a bit sloppy towards the end - we had a hard time ordering teas/the bill/paying at the end - despite the room being very empty by then. Would come back but would want a more central seat to avoid being forgotten about!

M
London
5 reviews
Dined on 2 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great find in Victoria.
Lovely restaurant. Set lunch is really good value and staff are professional and attentive ...and the food very nice indeed!
Will definitely return and recommend to friends.

EC
London
9 reviews
Dined on 1 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were pleasantly surprised. The food was very good. Service too

T
London
21 reviews
Dined on 26 June 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

This was my second visit having been impressed the first time. This time we enjoyed the salad but the recommended three cheese pizza was under cooked, we sent it back and the second one was cooked better but was nevertheless fairly bland and uninteresting.

PO
London
2 reviews
Dined on 22 June 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 3

Terrible Service all night. Also poor menu - little to no gluten free options. £20 salad was just lettuce and chicken breast - really nothing to return for.

HA
London
1 review
Dined on 22 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I would certainly recommend this restaurant. The food was excellent, as was the service and atmosphere.

TL
Bath
9 reviews
Dined on 20 June 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Came for after theatre supper. Felt that the maitresse d' did not want another booking. Other staff however were friendly and efficient despite their supervisor.

Arancini and cold meat platter impressed as first courses. It's a matter of taste but gogonzola and apple didn't work well with the chicken salad. Generous portion for the lamb rump For a future visit I think we'll stick to the pizzas.

OT
London
2 reviews
Dined on 20 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great lunch

RW
London
7 reviews
Dined on 17 June 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Food was nice but not outstanding, service was very friendly but slow. Some polishing needed as it has a lot of potential.

AW
Surrey
5 reviews
Dined on 17 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food excellent with large portions. The lady serving us was very good. the only negative was the wait for drinks (including coffee/tea). The drinks appear to be made on another floor so by the time they arrived it was a wait. The coffee went back as it was cold. That said we would go back. Would recommend!

SB
London
5 reviews
Dined on 14 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I was recommended this restaurant, as it is near to the theatre, where we were seeing Hamilton. It was not only convenient for the theatre, but also very close to the train and underground stations.
We ordered pizzas, I had the guest chef special, and they were both delicious. It was excellent value for money.
The waiting staff were very attentive and helpful and we will certainly come here again.

OT
1 review
Dined on 13 June 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

A party of four of us enjoyed a pre-theatre meal here. I had booked in advance and had requested a table in a quiet area as 2 of the party are deaf, the table reserved for us was perfect, thank you Hai Cenato! We ate from the pre-theatre menu, a limited menu with only 2 starters and 2 mains to choose from, but that was fine for us. It was good value and tasty food. Service was excellent and unobtrusive.

M
1 review
Dined on 12 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Not cheap, but delicious! Although they are very strict about not cancelling your table.

L
London
4 reviews
Dined on 12 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Thoroughly enjoyable pre-theatre dining experience. The food was exceptional - the risotto particularly so. Excellent service as well, and all in a lovely atmosphere.

JK
1 review
Dined on 11 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

This was a great place to go for a pre-Hamilton 5:30pm dinner with our family. We were a group of 6: 2 children, my husband and myself, and his parents. Everyone was happy with what they had. Some of us picked the pre-fix theater dinner, others just got pizzas. It was all tasty, served quickly, and we were on our way to our show in plenty of time.

RD
London
1 review
Dined on 7 June 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 1

For a corporate quick lunch maybe but not for an eve out. Weak and unexciting selection of cocktails during happy hour. Pizzas were good but overall place lacked warmth and atmosphere. Would not return.

IL
1 review
Dined on 4 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Very enjoyable venue, with very good food and excellent service.

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