It needs no further introduction with its name. Absurd Bird prides themselves for bringing fried chicken from the American Deep South into the UK, with branches across London and later expanded to regional locations like Bath, Exeter, Leeds, and Glasgow. If you enjoyed the likes of BIRD Restaurant, then Absurd Bird should most certainly be on your radar too.
We visited the Soho branch, which is tucked away on Peter Street. Stepping in, the restaurant was seemingly underwhelmingly small, with table booths closely packed together and seated close to the bar/kitchen area. But then as we were led downstairs, it actually opens up to a more cosy dining area, decorated with dark wood and featuring a moonshine-themed bar. There are TV screens across the wall as well, it was playing live football when we visited.
Here are the dishes we tried:
Buttermilk Fried Chicken Wings (£6.95 for 4 XL wings / £12.95 for 8 XL wings)
First of all, I did not expect the wings to come in such humongous size. They are definitely true to their word on their menu when they mention it’s XL chicken. I went with a classic buttermilk fried chicken wings, though there are a number of flavour options on the menu such as buffalo, hickory smoked BBQ, piri piri, peanut butter & maple, and many more.
Biting into it, you can clearly hear the loud crunch coming out of it. The wings were double-fried to achieve this ridiculously crispy crunch and it’s absolutely lush. Underneath that crispy coating revealed some absolutely juicy and succulent meat. The flavourings were simple but very effective. I really enjoyed it!
Buffalo Chicken Burger (£9.95)
Fried Chicken Burger with Buffalo sauce, mayo, salad, tomato, blue cheese, and carrot & celery slaw.
I enjoyed the visuals of it, with a knife firmly stabbed right at the centre of the burger and sauces dripping off the sides of it. Flavour-wise, the chicken wasn’t as crispy as their fried chicken wings. The buffalo sauce was on the tangy side but seemed to lacked that kick of heat in there. It was an okay burger but nothing particularly special about it.
Fried Chicken & Waffles (£11.85)
I definitely have a thing for fried chicken and waffles. Seeing it on the menu, I just had to try out Absurd Bird’s take on it. It comes with one large waffle that’s sliced up into quarters, topped with three large pieces of fried chicken, drizzled with maple syrup and served with a side of gravy.
The waffle was good – soft, pillowy, with a subtle sweetness that balances with the savoury fried chicken. As for the chicken, it was nice and crispy, though seem to be not as well-seasoned as the buttermilk fried wings above. It’s still good nonetheless. I suppose that’s where the gravy comes in, which just went so perfectly together with the chicken. Last but not least, I absolutely loved how to maple syrup just rounded up the blend of sweet and savoury flavours together on this dish. All in all, a pretty solid plate of chicken & waffles!
Mac & Cheese (£5.70)
For side dish, we went with a Mac & Cheese. It’s a solid Mac & Cheese, nicely baked till golden on top. The flavours were decent, though there were times it did feel that the cheese was mostly at the top and the macaroni pasta at the bottom didn’t get much of a sauce on them.
Absurd Bird can certainly deliver a solid standard of American comfort food. I really enjoyed those humongous Fried Wings and the Fried Chicken and Waffles came as a second favourite, though the remaining dishes were unfortunately not as special. It’s all in all a decent spot to satisfy your fried chicken cravings.
Nearest station: Piccadilly Circus
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