Thursday, 28 March 2013

Clockjack Oven, Soho - chicken rotisserie in search for a niche

Clockjack Oven Denman Street review
Clockjack Oven 

Address: 14 Denman Street
Soho, London W1D 7HJ
Phone: 0207 287 5111
Nearest Overground station:
Piccadilly Circus

Ratings (out of 5 *)
Price: below £20
Service charge: 10%
Taste: ***
Service: ****
Ambience: ***
Another one by TT on a meal when the restaurant first opened. She mentioned to me a review by Giles Coren some time back. Though he didn't mention its name, the "undress me, dress me" shirt gave the game away.

I had time for a quick meal before heading to a play in the West End and I thought I will give Clockjack Oven a try.

Clockjack Oven is located on Denman Street and is thus perfect for per theatre meals. The restaurant is small with modern grey decor. They have made their rotisserie a statement piece. Housed in a glass case behind the counter you can watch the chicken being engulfed in the blazing flames.

Billed as a modern rotisserie restaurant it serves free range chicken from a co-operative in Brittany flavoured with their in house marinade. I am rather surprised that they chose to source their chicken from France - is it not more sustainable to source ingredients locally where possible?

3 piece joint - they mean it when they say that they are for the peckish

Each diner was given a complimentary portion of root vegetable crisps to start. It was delicious. I went on to order the 3 piece set (£6.95) and a portion of the double cooked chips (£2.95). The menu describes the 3 piece set  as for the peckish and they are not kidding. They were tiny. The meat was succulent and tasty though the skin fails to make much if an impression. I could choose one out of four sauces to accompany the chicken. I chose the hot sauce but found that it did not have much of a kick. The chips were ok but nothing to write home about.

Clockjack Oven Denman Street review Crispy chicken bites
Buttermilk fried or not, these crispy chicken bites were a tad soggy

I still had room for a side (that's how tiny the 3 joints were) and went for the crispy chicken bites (£4.95) which are supposedly little pieces of buttermilk marinated golden nuggets. They were served warm but slightly soggy from the oil and not as crispy as they should be. A disappointment.

Service was pleasant and attentive. Staff (both male and female) were wearing this peculiar T shirt which screams undress me in front and now dress me at the back. I have no clue what that is and have to go to their web page to check what that us about. Apparently they are running a competition to design their staff uniform snd this is their way of drumming up publicity. Well it did get my attention but surely there is a more tasteful way to go about drumming up interest.

While Clockjack Oven may not have spectacular offerings it does offer a decent meal at a reasonable price and might just worth a try the next time you run out if ideas when at the West End.

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