Ex-Nobu London Head Chef Scott Hallsworth launched The Freak Scene as a pop-up in Farringdon in July 2017, after cutting ties with Kurobuta; the ‘rock and roll izayaka’ group he founded in London in 2014.The Freak Scene's first permanent location opened in March 2018, taking on the former Barrafina site on Frith Street. The Freak Scene 3.0 launched in March 2023 at 28 Parsons Green Lane, Fulham, London, SW6 4HS
Scott Hallsworth serves 'insanely delicious delicacies' (Jay Rayner, The Observer). Food that is both incredibly inventive yet comfortingly familiar – signature dishes include Barbequed Pork Belly, with a Spicy Peanut Soy Sauce, Tea Smoked Lamb, and Kombu, Roasted Chilean seabass – food full of flavour, achievable to create at home and guaranteed to wow friends, family and hungry gatecrashers.
Reviews of Scott Hallsworth's food from a selection of well-known critics and publications.
So a quick Google search and, hang on, that's Scott Hallsworth? The Aussie-born genius behind Kurobuta? What's he doing here? Google said he'd sold up and opened this. "I wondered why Kurobuta had gone to shit," said JD. "I ate there a few months back: absolute rubbish."
Not only can Scott Hallsworth, former head chef at Nobu and founder of the Kurobuta izakaya chain, stand the heat, he also cannot stay out of the kitchen – even if that means cooking on a camping stove. The Aussie with a funky Asian attitude to food might have cooked for the likes of the Beckhams, Michael Jackson and Roman Abramovich, but he started his latest restaurant Freakscene (named after the Dinosaur Jr song) as a hot and humble pop-up in Farringdon using portable gas cookers. It now has a permanent site in Soho playing his greatest hits on a robata grill and the results are outstanding feel-good (or should that be feed-good?) grazing plates that will have you coming back for more.
As my girlfriend and I walked through town in anxious silence, I kept picturing our arrival: the sexy music stopping with a scratch, the edgy punters looking at us with arch amusement, the murmuring maître d’ apologising that we were simply not — how should he put this? — freak-ay enough for such a joint, but that he could recommend Zizzi or, alternatively, ‘going home’. This is what will happen, I thought, clenching my girlfriend’s hand too tightly. This is definitely what will happen.
This is not what happened. We arrived and took our seats at the bar and ordered two beers. Freak Scene is, more or less, a bar. You sit on one side and drink, and on the other side some incredibly friendly and talented people prepare you delicious hits of imaginative pan-Asian fusion.
We're not saying every meal should start with a round (or two) of shots, but at Freak Scene you shouldn't be surprised if that's the way your night goes if chef-owner Scott Hallsworth.... gets involved. With a rocking soundtrack and Japanese game show Takeshi's Castle on loop above the open kitchen, this Frith Street spot is a riot of colour with an experimental, grazing-style menu that riffs off modern pan-Asian flavours.
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