Please note, Claw has now closed. However, it is set to open a new branch on a smaller site at Seven Dials Market. Time Out Food editors, September 2019.
‘Anything you recommend?’, I asked our waitress, looking at her smiley, wanting-to-be-helpful face. ‘Oh, the chicken wings. They’re my favourite.’ This was at Claw, which as you’ve probably guessed made its name serving crustaceans. Specifically, crab (it’s even the logo).
I politely pretended I hadn’t heard her, then went for more of a seafoody order. There was crab mac ’n’ cheese, which was pretty stingy on the crab meat, but otherwise brilliant: cheesy, tangy and moreish. On the flipside, the crab roll had plenty of chilled meat, all stuffed into a rich brioche bun, but was a tad bland. My tip? Order them together: as a team, they really work. Grilled tenderstem broccoli was genuinely great: crunchy and lemony with a sprinkle of crispy seaweed. The unexpected star of the night? A blueberry cheesecake ice-cream roll, Claw’s twist on an ice-cream sandwich. Picture a slab of ricotta ice cream and jammy blueberry compote wedged into a brioche bun, plus sour toffee sauce and salty flakes of hard cheese. So good.
Sadly, there were plenty of slip-ups too. When I eventually buckled and ordered the wings, they turned out to be syrupy and bland. A fennel salad was underdressed, while the soft-shell KFC (Korean fried crab) had been clobbered by raw spices.
Claw is a good-looking joint, if in a slightly unoriginal way: open kitchen, concrete floors, exposed bricks and warehouse lamps. Order very carefully and you can still have a decent time.