Mayfair restaurant brings cherished Italian custom La Passeggiata to life for the first time in London

Mayfair restaurant brings cherished Italian custom La Passeggiata to life for the first time in London


This Autumn, Italian restaurant Mercante is celebrating Italy’s rich culture by encouraging Londoners to take time out of their busy days to connect with each other on a leisurely pre-dinner, sunset walk, a passeggiata.

As evening sets across Italy and the piazzas catch a beautiful sun-kissed glow, Italians of all ages step outside to meander through their local area and take time to socialise with friends and family before dinner. It’s a chance to see loved ones and the city at dusk, as well as to “be seen”, with people dressing to impress.

La Passeggiata stems from the Italian verb “passeggiare,” meaning to stroll or take a slow walk. It’s a long-established social tradition in Italy that is so removed from the hustle and bustle of every day city life. Mercante are bringing this tradition to London by offering guided, free weekly passeggiatas around its fascinating district before dinner.

The short, leisurely walks, allow everyone to socialise and see and be seen – as such, dressing in finery for the occasion as the Italians do is highly encouraged!

Led by historian and London expert Peter Berthoud, who has previously appeared on BBC One’s Inside Out London and ITV’s “I Didn’t Know That About Britain”, The Mayfair Passeggiatas will follow a circular route around Mayfair and take in places of historical interest such as the famous Shepherd Market and Down Street Station. They will offer the opportunity to learn little known facts and intriguing anecdotes about the cultural area, such as why there are no flower beds in Green Park.

The Mayfair Passeggiatas will end at Mercante with a complimentary classic aperitivo of an Aperol Spritz on the restaurant’s newly-renovated, sun-soaked outdoor terrace.

Mercante’s authentic Italian menu, created by Head Chef Davide D’Ignazio, changes regularly to reflect seasonal Italian market food and the concept of “Per Oggi” – “for today”. D’Ignazio comments:

“Everything on the menu is created with authentic Italian meals in mind and so, to champion an Italian dining custom – so ingrained in the culture across the country – feels like the perfect way to elevate the Mercante experience. Hopefully we’ll inspire people to keep up the wonderful ritual.”

Peter Berthoud comments:

“Mayfair is such a culturally and historically rich area, with so many stories ingrained into its fabric. To intertwine the stories of Mayfair with a long-established social custom of Italy feels like a match made in heaven for Mercante and I can’t imagine a better way to spend an autumn evening…”

The free Mayfair Passeggiatas run from 8th September – 6th October 2018 every Saturday night. Booking is essential as spaces are limited.

Please visit for further information and to reserve a space.

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