Treat Yourself to Guilt-Free Chicken

Thought healthy fried chicken was nothing but a fallacy? So did we, until we discovered east London’s Clutch.

The restaurant: Clutch

Location: 4 Ravenscroft, London, E2 7QG

First impressions: Named after a group of chickens, Clutch is the new kid on the block when it comes to chicken restaurants. Flying the flag for healthy treats (all of their chicken is fried is ground nut oil and the meat is sourced from a free-range farm in Wiltshire), Clutch has been feeding hungry hipsters since the end of 2013. With an exterior designed by Gareth Pugh and interiors designed by Christina Fallah, Clutch is more than just a step up from traditional chicken restaurants; it’s in a league above.

Clutch is split into two areas, the restaurant and bar, both of which are offset by glass lights, filament light bulbs and wooden chairs. The staff, despite looking too-cool-for-school, couldn’t have been friendlier, especially co-founder Anthony Ussher who was sporting what can only be described as the best shirt we’ve ever seen (bright pink leopard print, in case you were wondering).

What we ate: What didn’t we eat? We tried two Happy Hens half buckets, sweet soy and garlic and peppery buttermilk. The peppery buttermilk was in a dry rub and although it was delicious, it was the sweet soy and garlic that really blew our socks off. Moist, sticky and tasty beyond belief, it was hands down the best chicken we’ve ever had. EVER. The fries (also cooked in healthy ground nut oil) were super crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside while the coleslaw with pomegranate seeds and beetroot with mozzarella and pistachio pesto complimented the meat perfectly.

You can tell how much effort was put into this meal, from the chicken to the sauces and even the clutchup, sorry ketchup, was homemade. Carrying on with the healthy message, you can also order lime leaves which help to break up the fat in the chicken. Unfortunately, we were way too full to even consider tackling desserts.

What we drank: Instead of sampling the wine, we decided to go all out and treat ourselves to cocktails – or tails as Clutch calls them. Concocted by an expert mixologist, we sipped (or rather guzzled) on a Clover Club (gin, raspberry syrup and egg white), The Basil Buckeye (gin, basil, sugars, apple, lemon and egg white) and The Rooster Rumble (spiced rum, dark rum, lemon, apple, sugars, ginger and egg white). Take our word for it, they were all delicious and definitely not to be missed.

Need to know: Don’t be put off if you’re a vegetarian; there are enough sides to satisfy you herbivores. They will also make a special main if you phone ahead.

Verdict: We can’t wait to go back but next time we’ll definitely be heading there on a Sunday to sample brunch or, if we’re feeling particularly ravenous, their famous roast.

What to wear: Skinny jeans for both men and women are the perfect choice for this trendy but not pretentious restaurant.

The damage: Expect to spend around £60 for a meal for two with mains, sides, desserts and a few beers.

Team your skinny jeans with a trusty pair of Converse:


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