'Less destination, more neighbourhood': Pidgin launches raffle to help it return to its roots

By Restaurant

- Last updated on GMT

Hackney restaurant Pidgin launches £100,000 raffle to raise money for a refurbishment

Related tags Pidgin Sam Herlihy James Ramsden Hackney London Restaurant

Hackney restaurant Pidgin is looking to raise £100,000 to raise money for a refurbishment and to help take the restaurant back to it origins.

Known for its weekly 'four courses and no faff and fuss' changing menu, wine and cocktail list, and never repeating a dish, the restaurant is raising the money in the form of a raffle, hosted on the Raffall platform​.

A total of 52 prizes can be won, including £50 vouchers and a private dinner for 24 people at the restaurant with tickets priced at £5 each.

The raffle will end on Sunday, 31 December 2023 or when the last ticket is sold.

The funds will be to carry out an extensive refurbishment of the dining room and kitchen, improve the restaurant’s outdoor dining area and deal with Long Covid legacy debts, ‘and give this small and unassuming neighbourhood restaurant and its staff and guests the brightest possible future’, it says.

The idea is to make the restaurant less destination and more neighbourhood, it adds.

Writing on the platform it says: “We opened Pidgin in 2015 with the simple aim of serving a weekly changing, never repeating, four-course menu.

“Over the years this has evolved and developed and, while maintaining the original ethos, become something more akin to a full tasting menu. Which has been great We’ve got an amazing team and a brilliant and - we think - well deserved reputation.

“But the world has changed. And over the past 18 months it has become increasingly clear to us that there is less demand for this kind of eating. It feels like London wants something more low-key, buzzy, and communal. And so do we.”

From the beginning of 2024 the team says it will be taking Pidgin back to its origins serving a four-course menu that will change every week with no dishes repeated.

The new menu is described as costing ‘considerably less than it currently does’ although there will be will be what are described as ‘semi-gonzo extras available for those who still like to blow the doors off’

Pidgin was launched by James Ramsden and Sam Herlihy (pictured) in 2015 and has won acclaim for its unique approach to cooking.

It is not the first time the duo have raised money from the genera public. In 2000 they crowdfunded £60,000​ to help the restaurant survive the winter

Every penny over the £100,000 target will be donated to charity Médecins Sans Frontières.

To visit Pidgin's raffle page, click here.

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