Trendwatch: Chicken restaurants

James Ramsden tunes in to what’s hot and happening in the capital’s food scene.

Trendwatch: Chicken restaurants

The latest food trend to descend upon London, clucking wildly and feathers everywhere, is chicken. When it comes to eating out, the chook has for too long been seen as a sort of gastronomic cop-out (coop out?) – an eye-roll-worthy menu order made by only the most unambitious diners.

No longer. Restaurants across London have realised two important things: one, that when it’s good we all love chicken; and two, that it doesn’t have to be bunged on the menu somewhere to appease the unadventurous. Dammit, chicken can be the beginning and the end of the menu.

Take Le Coq in Islington, a restaurant where the main course choices are… well there is no choice. It’s chicken or chicken. And what fine chicken it is too. Or the Soho House group’s Chicken Shop, in Kentish Town in the north and Tooting in the south, serving free-range birds that are so high-welfare they were practically cuddled to death. I

n the West End there’s

Clockjack Oven

and

Whyte & Brown

. In trendy east London you’ll find

Clutch

in Hoxton and Mark Hix’s

Tramshed

in Shoreditch. The rules have changed: a deep fat fryer, a basket or peri-peri sauce are no longer a prerequisite for a chicken dinner. Finally, chicken is ruling the roost.

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