Marino Polignano grew up in a little village called Casamassima, in southern Italy, in the region of Puglia. He grew up in his parents’ shop which sold wonderful traditional Italian foods, like hams, cheeses, pasta, wine, coffee, breads, olive oil, etc. (all of which are the local traditional). Marino worked along side his father and helped with the yearly harvest of olives, cherries, almonds, capers, and other home-grown fruits. His father taught him about the land and foraging skills, finding asparagus, wild onions, fennel, and mushrooms like Cardoncelli, which grow only on land that has been uncultivated for hundreds of years. Marino’s grandparents lived at an old farm house called a ‘masseria’, which was the hub of family-gatherings for meals round a big table outside surrounded by their olive trees and animals. All the food was home grown and handmade;their cows produced the milk for the Mozzarella, pigs produced the hams that had been cured, chickens for their eggs to make the pasta, and ripe red tomatoes made the ragu. You will find pictures and memorabilia of the Polignano family around our stairwell and on our website.
In our deli we want to bring you producers products that you cannot find else where in the UK. We have unusual products that we want to share with you like cactus fruit jam and cime di rape (a vegetable not found in the UK). Marino's dad puts together a pallet of goodies every 2 weeks back in Italy, and it arrives to us in three to four days. Italians base a lot of their meals on the seasonal fruit and vegetables and we aim to bring you their seasonal produce. Check out our deli for what's new. Dishes you will find on our menu were written by Mamma Polignano herself, with recipes eaten in the family for generations. We hope you enjoy the real taste of southern Italy!