Recipe: John Chantarasak’s Carlingford Oyster and Sea Buckthorn Nahm Jim

Promising a ‘green social club’ in the city, there’s a new pop-up in town in the form of restaurant and event space, Outcrop. So, what’s on the menu?

If you’ve not made it down Outcrop yet there’s still time, just… the exciting pop-up restaurant and art space on The Strand is due to close at the end of next month. It was designed as a new type of gathering place – a green social club in the city where people could come together to eat, drink and have fun, all whilst striving to have a positive impact on the planet. Conceived by Luca founders Johnny Smith and Daniel Willis, and three of the team behind Secret Cinema (Tom Allott, Andrea Moccia and Sabrina Goreeba), it plays host to an arts and music programme, including a central installation exploring the world beyond our senses. The perfect spot for a drink on a summer’s evening, award-winning bar manager Rob Simpson has curated a drinks list making use of hedgerow fruits, spirits and botanicals from the best producers across the UK. Choose from a selection of cocktails made using exclusively British ingredients, such as the British Margarita, made from barley eau de vie, London honey and gooseberry, or the Outcrop Martini, which combines London dry gin with a homemade herb garden vermouth, served ice cold.

John Chantarasak Anglothai

 John Chantarasak

Meanwhile, on the food front, Outcrop’s restaurant is run by AngloThai’s John Chantarasak. The chef has created a menu influenced by his Thai-British heritage, with a focus on British summer vegetables, and a smaller selection of native breed animals and line-caught fish – mostly cooked over charcoal, in keeping with the traditional cooking practices of rural Thailand. Expect dishes like these delicious oysters. John says: “Nahm jim is a traditional Thai sauce that marries spicy, sour and salty flavours together in perfect harmony. Lime juice is used in traditional recipes, but this version utilises sea buckthorn, an orange berry that’s native to Britain, to bring sourness and a background tropical fruit flavour to the sauce. If you’re unable to source sea buckthorn juice (available at health stores or online) then use lime and orange juice, at a ratio of five parts lime juice to one part orange juice.”


1 long red chilli, seeds removed and chopped | 1 red bird’s eye chilli, chopped | 1 tbsp coriander root, cleaned and chopped (or coriander stem) | 1 tbsp garlic, peeled and chopped | ó tsp salt | 5 tbsp sea buckthorn juice (unsweetened) | 2ó tbsp fish sauce | 2 tbsp caster sugar | 12 x Carlingford oysters | Crushed ice to serve (optional)


  1. Make the nahm jim sauce by pounding the chillies, coriander root, garlic and salt to a smooth paste using a mortar and pestle. Add the sea buckthorn juice, fish sauce and caster sugar, then mix everything well so the sugar dissolves. Set aside for 10 minutes, allowing the flavours to mellow and marry together.
  2. Shuck the oysters and clean them of any shell fragments. Tip away most of the oyster liquid then spoon the sea buckthorn sauce over each oyster, about a tablespoon for each. Rest the shells on a bowl of crushed ice and serve immediately.

180 The Strand, WC2R. To learn more, or make a booking, see


Photography by Ben Broomfield