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Cottons (CLOSED)

Restaurants Clerkenwell

Time Out says

Friendly warning! We're working hard to be accurate. But these are unusual times, so please check that venues remain open.

Please note, Cottons in Clerkenwell has now closed. Time Out Food editors, February 2019.

Stepping into Cottons is like stepping into a colonial-era Caribbean – all crisp white tablecloths and heavy furniture, warmly lit by dappled red and blue from the stained glass in the big windows. It’s a perfect spot for romantic dining, and all around us couples looked lovingly into each other’s eyes – probably to avoid accidentally looking into their neighbours’ eyes, so tightly packed are the tables.

Cottons is to be applauded for trying to add a touch of panache to down-home Caribbean cooking, but it does it too poorly to deserve more than a limp clap. A generously sized platter of jerk chicken wings, jerk pork ribs, fried plantain and deep-fried salt cod fritters had deep, layered flavours, but was smothered in a bland barbecue sauce. The same sauce returned for an unwelcome encore smothering spatchcocked slow-roasted jerk chicken – a dry, flavourless piece of meat. Oxtail stew with butter beans, a Jamaican classic, was better: rich with a full, satisfying flavour.

Seeing our neighbours send back a chocolate fondant so overcooked that it was a dry, solid block, we decided to skip pudding. At these prices, the food should be much better.



Address: 70 Exmouth Market
Transport: Tube: Farringdon tube/rail or bus 19, 38, 341
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