Hai Cenato

3.9
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594 reviews
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£26 to £40
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Italian

Top tags:

Pre/post Theatre
Casual
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 594 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
3.9based on recent ratings
4.0
food
3.9
service
3.8
ambience
3.5
value
Noise · Moderate
73% of people would recommend it to a friend
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KS
New York Area
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

Pizzas are good- high quality but service was really bad. It was my mom’s birthday and we had put that in the reservation. Right from the the hostess to the manager, no one came to wish and did not let us cut our cake.

C
London
15 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Great pizzas and pasta, skip the panacotta though, it was completely liquid.

AP
London
3 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Nice restaurant not far from Victoria station. Good food and great service.

AJ
London
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 1

Rubbish stodgy food. Service average. No atmosphere and terrible music.

BO
London
108 reviews
Dined on 7 September 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

A convenient restaurant for Victoria station with some interesting dishes, but the main focus is up market pizzas. We had delicious Californium style starters but dull main courses. Veal Milanese was covered with pizza-style tomato paste and not remotely authentic. Nice wines though.

e
Berlin
8 reviews
Dined on 6 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great small plates and pizzas. Fairly buzzy in the Friday lunchtime that I was there’s

R
London
9 reviews
Dined on 4 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Second time here and will be back again. That’s a good sign and signal..

CB
London
1 review
Dined on 4 September 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

The restaurant and staff were great but the Drunken Oyster staff were slow and uninterested. Our cocktails were poor and we felt forgotten about. I think the negative reviews are all about the bar. The restaurant, food and staff were excellent. Give the bar a miss.

JS
1 review
Dined on 31 August 2019
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 3

Went here for dinner before seeing Hamilton just up the street. The location is perfect for a preshow dinner and a good option if you're vegetarian. We ordered the Sam Marzano pizza and the Taleggio with Mushroom pizza. The San Marzano was amazing- honestly the best pizza I've had outside of Italy. The Taleggio on the other hand was very disappointing and we just didn't end up eating it. The cheese was very thick and kinda cold so got that rubbery kind of vibe. We didn't get any pasta but we saw some going by our table and it looked amazing- definitely had some food envy. The service was kinda strange, all the waitresses were very sweet but we kept having different ones come over so we couldn't really understand who was serving us and it took a long time to get anyone's attention. Overall would recommend for preheater, but leave yourself time because they are not too fast with the service.

OT
London
4 reviews
Dined on 30 August 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Excellent value lunch menu at Hai Cenato, both the Heritage Tomato Salad and the Ham Hock and Sage Gnocchi were absolutely delicious. Service was attentive and friendly. Overall a very enjoyable lunch.

NW
Kent
3 reviews
Dined on 29 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great food and cocktails - especially like the pizza/cocktail of the month. Buzzing atmosphere, lovely decor but most of all - value for money!

P
London
12 reviews
Dined on 29 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This restaurant is a favourite of mine, the value is incredible, the quality of the food is something else for the money.

W
Edmonton
3 reviews
Dined on 26 August 2019
Overall 2food 1service 1ambience 4

Heard good reviews but food was poor quality. It arrived quickly which was great for us to enjoy the theatre but it lacked taste and quality. Service was poor as well. Wouldn’t go back but would go back to the location and select another restaurant

OT
Gloucestershire
1 review
Dined on 21 August 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Very friendly waitresses, food nice and hot but everything had a little too much salt. Especially the shin of beef ragu.

ME
1 review
Dined on 17 August 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Excellent, attentive and polite service and mouthwatering food.

SS
1 review
Dined on 16 August 2019
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
4 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
38 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

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