Before we get started, let me tell you one thing: I know about chicken. Other than the fact that fried chicken has been my drunk food of choice since my uni days, my last name literally means chicken. It’s in my blood. But Clutch isn’t just any old chicken restaurant: it’s one that has made my favourite kind of food ‘guilt-free’. So, my friend, my belly, and I put on our finest chicken-eatin’ pants and took a trip to see if they could live up to their bold claims.
Venue and Atmosphere
The two of us are the most useless human beings with directions and with the heavens opening and raining on our chicken parade, it felt like we were going to be lost forever in the streets of Hoxton. But after finding the right road, Clutch stood as a beacon of yellow glory leading us to sanctuary. The entire outside is bright yellow, with a cute little garden area outside for when the sun comes out, while the interiors are contemporary and minimalist, with quirky flourishes – like their lightbulbs-in-lightbulbs lights and the whacky cocktail names written in chalk on the walls.
Clutch is something of a hangout in the local area, with people living nearby coming for reasonably priced drinks and food. The crowd was mainly younger, and there were a fair few people even on a Tuesday night with the rain pouring down.
Food and Drink
After drying myself in the adorably named ‘Beware of the Cock’ toilet, it was time to warm my belly with some delicious chicken... after getting a drink in our hands. We kicked off proceedings with the Chilli Chicklet (£10), made from fresh red chilli infused tequila, lemon juice and honey water. Because my tongue is as capable of dealing with heat as a magnum in the hands of a toddler, normally I’m not a fan of chilli drinks. However, not only was this tasty, the chilli actually enhanced the flavours, giving it a friendly kick that we both really enjoyed.
With our tastebuds warmed up, we decided to test the ‘guilt free chicken’ philosophy properly, with the roast chicken dinner (£16). They serve up a herb infused rotisserie chicken, alongside sweet potato chips, a pot of mozzarella and beetroot, and coleslaw.
The sweet potato chips were actually oven baked, and rather than being soggy, floppy messes that oven-baked chips can turn out like, were fresh and delicious. In fact, fresh is the strongest theme running through the meal, with the sides being especially so. The beetroot and mozzarella was at its best when mixed with the chicken -which, by the way, was really the main event with this meal, being both juicy and flavoursome. But while the coleslaw was nice enough, there was coriander mixed in it for some reason, which put me off.
That meal would have been enough to satisfy regular people, but when there’s the option of an indulgent dessert, it’s time to indulge in that dessert. So without a second to spare we ordered a sweet beak brownie (£5) each, served with fresh cream & berries, and tucked in. While this nutty chocolate treat is probably the unhealthiest thing on the menu, it is so good. The fresh cream and berries are piled on top to the point where you’re probably getting one of your five-a-day anyway, and it ends up as rich, delicious and perfect end to a meal.
With juicy, succulent chicken, tasty sides and one amazing brownie, all served in a quirky yellow hut, Clutch is a must for chicken fans. And with the added bonus of the meals barely touching the waistline, there’s fewer places better for people wanting to eat their bodyweight in chicken.