It’s a familiar story: chefs across the country are pushing the culinary boundaries and launching fresh popup concepts that become so popular they end up staying far longer. And now the chef behind smash hit Japanese rock’n’roll restaurant Kurobuta, which started life in 2014 as a six-month pop-up, is back with a brand-new and very exciting concept. After winning over legions of fans with Kurobuta, Aussie chef Scott Hallsworth has moved on and announced that he’s launching a new popup restaurant in London’s Farringdon area: FREAK SCENE. But diners will have to move fast to grab a table: the restaurant will only be open for a limited, three-month stint after it launches on Friday 21st July.
Anyone who’s eaten at Kurobuta or Nobu (Hallsworth worked at Nobu both in the UK and in Australia) will know how skilled he is in the art of Japanese cuisine and how his passion for Asian cooking shines through. For FREAK SCENE, Hallsworth has crafted a tantalising menu of pan-Asian dishes, prepared with an innovative flair. The menu is an enthusiastic, whistle-stop tour of Asia, stopping by everywhere from Thailand and Malaysia to South Korea and Japan.
Star dishes include a hot short rib rendang, Miso-yaki foie gras croissant with star anise jus, chilli crab with avocado wonton ‘bombs’ and tea-smoked lamb chops with a spicy Korean miso.
The drinks menu, meanwhile, features an array of classics – with an Asian twist, of course. Each one promises to be fresh, zingy and utterly delicious. True to his love of all things Japanese, Hallsworth is also promising to introduce people to a new sake each week.
Best of all, the open plan layout means diners can peek into the kitchen to see Hallsworth himself cooking up a storm. The best seats in the house are undoubtedly by the bar, which directly overlooks the action in the kitchen. Forget Netflix: this is where the entertainment is at this summer.
Never a big fan of standing on ceremony or overly stuffy service, Hallsworth wants FREAK SCENE to be an affordable, lively and laidback place for people to tuck into delicious and balanced Asian food.
Taking up residence at 91 Cowcross Street in Farringdon, FREAK SCENE can hold up to 40 guests, with eight additional seats outside – perfect for summertime dining!
Given its limited run, diners are advised to enjoy it while they can – and vote with their bellies if they want it to stay on longer than the initial three-month run.