Shoreditch, London

This ambitious East London restaurant is designed to emulate the feeling of dinner in a private home


Set within a Shoreditch town house, Cycene is an ambitious and decidedly contemporary restaurant overseen by chef Theo Clench, whose CV includes spells at Akoko, Trinity and The Clove Club.

Clench’s lengthy tasting menu blends modern and classical elements and is notably clean in terms of both flavour and presentation. Much of the produce is aged on site, including the fish that’s used for Clench’s visually-striking signature dish of turbot, which is served with a sauce made with caramelised bones.  

Owners James and Christie Brown have created a space that is intimate and high reaching. Design details include wooden panelling, tall candles, a striking Frank Auerbach charcoal drawing and a slick kitchen into which guests are invited to have some of their courses. 

James oversees the restaurant’s low intervention wine list. The selection changes regularly with rare bottles rotated in and out from an offsite cellar. Diners can opt for a non-alcoholic pairing that features house-made kombuchas and other ferments.

Taking its name from an old English word for kitchen, Cycene is one of east London’s most progressive and singular places to eat.