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Osteria da Nino; the Home of Italian Food in Hornchurch


Just over twenty years ago, we used to spend most weekends with friends in a restaurant called Nino’s in Upminster. Whenever I had a sleepover with school friends I’d send Dad down to Nino’s to pick up a stack of pizzas and some zucchini; we never ordered from fast food chains. If it was my birthday, I’d want to eat at Nino’s and I can’t remember how many I did end up celebrating there.

My heart broke a little when it shut down.

Fast forward to February 2019 and Nino is back!

He’s moved home to 53 Butts Green Lane in Hornchurch and opened Osteria da Nino, which much to my delight is a mere five minutes walk from our flat. Sorry bank balance! There’s ample parking out front on the main road in the bays and all around the side roads, but they are residential so please park respectfully!

Since opening, I’ve popped down a few times and have left so happily full that I’ve slept well after. The portion sizes are so generous but this doesn’t mean the quality is compromised at all.

I often find when you get a large meal in front you, that it’s normally pretty average food. There is nothing average about the food that Nino puts in front of you. The meats and fish used is nothing short of top quality.

One thing I do love about Nino and his way of doing things is that he’s so very traditional. His cooking is so traditionally Italian. The decor of the restaurant could be from the streets of Italy. And his approach to marketing is just so traditional.

Nino is filling seats just by word of mouth. He doesn’t have a Facebook page, a Twitter profile, an Instagram feed or even a website. Yet the restaurant is getting booking after booking and in this day and age, I feel this speaks volumes. With the food being some of the best I’ve eaten in a long time it’s hardly surprising.

The menu boasts a selection of pasta, meat dishes and oodles of fish. Everything we’ve tried, and between Mike, my family and friends we’ve probably tried most of the menu, has been filled with flavour. Whether it was mushroom pasta, veal with plenty of veggies and potatoes or spicy chicken wings as a starter, we’ve not had one bad thing to say about any of it.

I really can’t put into words just how good the food is, and how it totally lives up to how great I remember Nino’s cooking. It’s often such a disappointment going back somewhere after years to find out you’d hyped it up in your head and leave disappointed.

This really wasn’t the case at Osteria da Nino. It exceeded those fond memories of mine and has given me a place to create so many more with every visit and every new dish we try.

We’ve got a good few bookings in the diary to keep returning as there’s nothing in the local area that can even begin to compete. With the value for money, the impeccable service and just proper home cooked Italian food, I’m sure we’re not the only ones doing so.

To book call Nino on 01708 478727

8 comments so far.

8 responses to “Osteria da Nino; the Home of Italian Food in Hornchurch”

  1. Jeannette says:

    Oh this is great news so glad he’s back ! Will definitely go thx for this wonder why they closed ? When it was sooo popular!

  2. Lizi says:

    Sooo when I’m down south in April, we’re going here for lunch, right?!

  3. This is such a lovely restaurant, I loved the decor when I was there. Can’t wait to visit for pizza.

  4. Phil says:

    We live only two minutes walk from here and had been long-time customers of the Indian restaurant which occupied this space. When that closed and re-opened as an Italian we were curious and gave it a go. What a disappointment. Now that has closed, and yet another Italian has taken it’s place. Again curious, we have searched high and low for a website, a Facebook page or anything that would give us a menu and idea of pricing. We found nothing, except this blog, which although interesting, gives nothing else away. Although publicity is described as ‘traditional’ how in this day an age do restaurants expect to gain new custom without some kind of internet presence? I’m interested, but I’d like to see the menu and prices before I book. Not too much to ask, is it?

  5. SquibbVicious says:

    Hi Phil,
    I am currently working with Nino to build an online presence. I just wanted to get a blog out about great the food is so there was at least something online. The prices are great value for money, a lot cheaper than many chain Italian’s that Hornchurch has in abundance, and the food is actually cooked while you wait, not microwaved like those chains!
    Please bear with us whilst we work on the online side of things – it’s changed a hell of a lot since Nino last had a restaurant like this!

  6. Phil says:

    Thank you. That’s great to hear. It needs to be something a little bit special given the local restaurant competition. I look forward to seeing what Nino has to offer once the website is up and running

  7. Roberta Rivieccio says:

    I believe the restaurant has shut down. On Saturday 1st June 2019 I had a table booked for 13 people to celebrate my husband’s 85th. Booking for 5.30pm. We arrived to find the restaurant closed. Chairs on the tables. No note on the door. I rang but received no response. Needless to say, very disappointing but managed to find an alternative restaurant in Hornchurch centre. Have passed many times on the 165 to find that the name has been removed from the restaurant. What springs to mind is perhaps a sudden death??

  8. SquibbVicious says:

    Hi Roberta,

    Nino is a family friend and hasn’t passed away.

    There were internal issues further up the chain that meant Nino had to leave the premises immediatley; nothing to do with the food, hygenine, or health and safety etc.

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About Squibb Vicious


Squibb Vicious is also known as Haydy.
She can often be found travelling the world to fly her drone and petting people’s dogs. Big fan of staycations, vegetarian food, long walks and taking too many photos.
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2020 Travel & Exciting Plans

✈️ January
Mike’s Birthday Trip
Brixton Prison Restaurant
Bishops Castle
Shrewsbury Prison Tour
✈️ February
Bishops Castle cont.
Start New Job!
Ram Brewery Tour
✈️ July
Tilbury Fort
✈️ August
Tiny Rebel, Newport
✈️ September
Afternoon Tea
Bottomless Brunch
✈️ October
Havering Hoard Exhibit
✈️ November