Humble Chicken

Japanese·
££££
·
Gold Award

SquareMeal Review of Humble Chicken

Gold Award

Humble Chicken’s beak-to-foot yakitori made a splash when it first opened in 2021 - according to head chef Angelo Sato, that was just a step in the restaurant’s evolution towards a tasting menu. 2023 brought the greatest gift of all - Humble Chicken 2.0 in it’s final form - and it has set the bar remarkably high for the rest of the year’s restaurant openings.

Inside, Humble Chicken is slick and stylish - a right-angled counter swings across the room, bending around a busy open kitchen where Sato fans the flames of an open grill. There are flashes of opulence in the grained marble floors, but for the most part Humble Chicken is understated - the restaurant is illuminated by the gentle glow of moon-like pendants overhead, and there are playful touches too, like the little chickens that kindly hold your chopsticks for you throughout the meal.

The move to a tasting menu suits this restaurant down to a tee, and snacks set the tone for an evening of incredible food - we slurp down mussels presented in shells like oysters, and grilled oysters served with fermented persimmon, citrus kosho beurre blanc and burnt chicken fat. A tartlet of miso-cured foie gras and almond brittle is one of the most delicious single bite morsels we’ve ever encountered, and the exceptionally high standards continue with cured, torched mackerel sashimi, topped with fermented plum and shiso leaf. Every dish weaves together very specific flavours with incredible skill and precision - perhaps no surprise given Sato’s background at the likes of Restaurant Gordon Ramsay and Restaurant Story. The drinks menu is a perfect accompaniment, combining clever cocktail mixes (including a refreshing watermelon negroni) and accessible sakes by the glass.

There are too many courses to mention and not enough time in the day, but safe to say, each new dish is revelatory and delicious - a tough combination to master. By the time the last of the desserts arrives - an ingenious, texture-laden clementine cheesecake with citrus segments, meringue shards and frozen clementine grated over the top - it’s clear there’s nothing humble about this chicken. In fact - this might just be the most exciting place to eat in London right now.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - Over £80
Cuisines
Japanese
Ambience
Cool, Dark and moody, Fun, Lively, Quirky, Unique
Other Awards
One Michelin star, SquareMeal London Top 100
Food Occasions
Dinner
Special Features
Counter dining
People
Birthdays, Celebrations, Dates

About

After having some initial success as a yakitori restaurant that focused on ‘comb-to-tail’ chicken butchery and cooking, Humble Chicken decided to eschew the previous a la carte menu for a tasting menu at the beginning of 2023. Head chef Angelo Sato brings a wealth of experience from some of the world’s best restaurants - not just the likes of Restaurant Gordon Ramsay and Restaurant Story in London, but also Eleven Madison Park in New York, and RyuGin in Tokyo.

Despite the name, Angelo Sato's cooking at Humble Chicken takes the same approach as his previous high end haunts, serving complex, precise dishes that evoke the flavours of Japanese izakayas. On the menu currently you’ll find dishes such as mussels with citrus kosho ponzu and avocado, pig trotter bao with karashi and quail egg, grilled oyster with fermented persimmon, citrus kosho beurre blanc and burnt chicken fat, and yakiniku of grilled, slow-cooked short rib with spicy miso and lettuce.

Desserts include a Japanese creme caramel called purin, and currently a dish called ‘everything clementine’ which combines citrus segments with whipped, sweetened cream cheese, shards of meringue and frozen clementine grated over the top to make a clementine granita.

The restaurant itself is based in the same unit that once belonged to Barrafina Soho, and it makes use of the old Barrafina set up to provide a pure counter dining experience. Humble Chicken offers two sittings every evening for guests to enjoy the full tasting menu experience, and seats around the counter have full view of the open kitchen where Sato and team finish each dish before serving it personally to guests.

A compact drinks list runs alongside the menu, featuring a mixture of house cocktails, sakes by the glass, wines, spirits and alcohol-free options. The former includes smart cocktails such as a watermelon negroni, lychee martini and a koji coffee old fashioned, which combines Nikka whisky, miso coffee, butter and shimeji mushroom.


FAQs

Does it have a Michelin star?

No, but it does have a Michelin Bib Gourmand.

Helpful? 0

Does it cater for vegetarians?

As a small team, who plan and prep everything fresh each day for the evening’s service, please note, the team won’t be able to cater for most allergies including, vegetarian, vegan, dairy free and coeliacs.

Helpful? 0

Location

54 Frith Street, Soho, London, W1D 4SJ

020 7434 2782 020 7434 2782

Website

Opening Times

Dinner
Mon Closed
Tue 18:00-21:00
Wed 18:00-21:00
Thu 18:00-21:00
Fri 18:00-21:00
Sat 18:00-21:00
Sun Closed

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020 7434 2782 020 7434 2782

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