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‘It’s so good to be back’: Jay Rayner’s first restaurant meal since lockdown

As London’s Trullo opens its doors to its first in-house customers in 108 days the seating is restricted and the waiters visored but it’s not only its fabulous pasta that thrills the Observer’s food critic Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageThey have just finished polishing the brass plate at the threshold of Trullo at London’s Highbury Corner when I arrive for my lunch, dead on noon. A moment later I become the first customer to cross that threshold in 108 days. And then there I am, with a menu of rustic Italian dishes in my hand. I choose. They bring. And then they do the washing up. After over three months of the lockdown and an awful lot of my own cooking, it is frankly thrilling.But it isn’t business as usual, not quite. Trullo has reduced the number of seats upstairs from 38 to 22 with a similar cut for the basement dining room, and a path has been marked out across the floor should you need to head to the loo. Screens have been inserted between tables making them into booths, and all the waiters wear visors. “It’s very good to be back,” our waiter says, as she takes an order for rugged pasta dishes and porchetta. Does she feel anxious about the working conditions? “I really don’t actually,” she says. Related: Reality bites: how the pandemic changed the way we eat Continue reading…