Those who now bemoan the rise of the hipster dirty food joints best look away now… Who’d have thunk it? Six months ago if you wanted chicken the best Kentish town could offer was the ubiquitous Nandos or Chicken cottage – but not now! Things are changing in NW5. First we had the Chicken Shop and now those good burger folk at Lucky Chip have given us a cheeky little popup Lucky Fried Chicken@ The Grafton.
Well with the glut of hipster burgers in the capital it was only a matter of time before ‘Chucken’ had its moment in the sun. And so for a few weeks at least, NW5 is the centre of the London chicken universe.
I liked the nod to a certain colonel and their cheeky disregard for intellectual property will raise some eyebrows… though am sure this will have popped off before the ‘cease and desist’ letter arrives.
True to form, you can order the usual 2, 3, 5 or 9 piece box combos, up to a punchy bucket of 15 and barrel of chicken weighing in at 21 pieces (You’ll need to bring some willing and hungry friends for that undertaking). Most combos come with coleslaw, mash, country gravy and a hot roll or two.
So its fried chicken. What you get are some very generous portions of breasts and thighs. Spiced crispy batter, moist meat. What’s not to love? To some it might be too moist, bordering on the pink? But that’s splitting hairs, it was properly cooked and with a private party upstairs and a quiz on I’ll give them a break. It came out quickly and there was plenty of it.
The usual suspects of coleslaw, fries and beans do a respectable turn. Potato and bean salads also feature. The baked beans were spot on and in fact were considerably better than a number of more notable London BBQ joints. (who in my view still can’t get them right.)
Fries were textbook stuff, nice and salty. They won’t blow your mind but they are correct to a T.
The Mash well I didn’t have high expectations for it but I stand corrected it was damn tasty, in fact I’d go for that over the fries on reflection. The Hot roll or biscuit is an authentic touch but it felt a little lost in the whole.
I have to finish with the staff who couldn’t have been more helpful. They were friendly, efficient and charming. What more could you ask for ? They were also more than deserving of a tip – so don’t forget that when you pay for your meal at the bar.
To conclude its fun and a different beast altogether than the Chicken Shop up the road. Straight down and dirty chicken.
Does it reach the heights of Changs awesome Momofuku Fried chicken feast? No, am afraid not, but then Chang’s crew have had longer to perfect their art.
Does it beat the colonel at his own game well ‘hells yes!’
20 Prince of Wales Road