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52 Wilton Way
Cosy Pidgin, tealights aflicker, does one menu, a four-course set with wines – three red, three white, all bargainous – that changes weekly. It’s the brainchild of writer James Ramsden and writer-musician Sam Herlihy, who have laid to rest their Secret Larder supper club to open this bricks-and-mortar restaurant on the teeny-tiny site previously occupied by Mayfields. They’re real restaurateurs now, with a real chef in Dan Graham (ex-Dinner by Heston), but they’re sticking with a friendly, low-key supper club vibe. We won on our visit with a nominally modern British menu loaded with funky Asian touches, and a peach of a Viognier from Languedoc. An impactful opener of barbecued squid, kimchi and (unnecessary) chicken-fat powder segued into a subtle autumn vegetable ‘salad’ with jasmine rice broth, followed by roast quail with creamed corn and herby ‘green sauce’, then sticky apple bread pudding with sticky miso butterscotch. Considering that the kitchen hasn't repeated a dish from its weekly changing menu in over a year, this is an exciting and successful dining concept, which made for a thoroughly enjoyable evening.
London's Hot 100 Restaurants
52 Wilton Way
020 7254 8311
Hackney Central Station 255m
Hackney Downs Station 346m
Bullion Room Theatre 369m
Hackney Empire Theatre 404m
Wed-Thurs 6pm-11pm Fri-Sun 1pm-3pm 6-11pm
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 5
The ever changing weekly menu is the main attraction at Pidgin. The menu and the small, cosy atmosphere. The two main attractions to Pidgin are the menu, the small, cosy atmosphere and the excellent staff. Amongst the attractions to Pidgin are...
I'll start again...
I've been meaning to come here for almost a year now, but being an SW man it's a bit of a commute to Hackney. Luckily I work up at Old Street now so it's just a short hop across to this tiny venue no bigger than a living room. And that's the first thing you notice when you walk in. It's like a living room. People chatting, friends laughing, it has that relaxed feel that is often missing from places of this calibre. I don't like eating in libraries.
The menu changes weekly, and we were lucky to get the famous chicken with beer sauce as the chief course. Dining with me was a Michelin Virgin, so this was a pretty perfect introduction, somewhere were the food is the focus, not what the dress code is, or how you're not meant to laugh too loudly.
And what food it is, I expected great things and it was exactly what I'd hoped. Every course was something new and exciting both in terms of combinations of flavours and flavours themselves. Black pudding with muscles and sea vegetables. Kohl Rabi with rice paper, chili bean paste and black vinegar. And the stand out course for me, chicken, Beer, pickled, pommes dauphines, rye bread sauce, greens. Finished off with Apple, truffle and peanut butter, with just the sweetest hint of honey.
And that's the beauty of this place. It's fantastic food in a relaxed vibey place where the staff are more than prepared to have a chat with you and share a joke.
Will I be back? Of course, I just won't like the hour taxi ride home at the end, though after all that food a snooze is probably what you need...
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