Sitting among the independent shops, stalls and eateries in covered Market Row, CHICKENliquor (known in its former incarnation as Wishbone) is a trendy, 'ironic' fried chicken restaurant in an area almost synonymous with the fast-food chicken shops that everyone regrets the morning after the night before.
Street art covers the walls, soul music and hip-hop are on the playlist, boxes of hot sauce are stacked high, and customers perch at bright-yellow breakfast bars – the look is of an urban, stripped-back eating space.
Crispy, breaded chicken came in a roll garnished with crushed peanuts, spring onion, chinese cabbage, pickled daikon and chilli mayo. It was a texture sensation: the tender chicken is coated in a peppery, crunchy shell, while the peanuts go well with the sharper, softer cabbage and onion mix.
Portions are large, but an additional order of ’slaw is a good idea – it’s light, fresh and crunchy, making a nice contrast with the chicken. An extensive bar contains a range of spirits, but you’ll probably want to go elsewhere for an evening out.
In April 2014 it was announced to some fanfare that the restaurant had been acquired by Meatliquor, which is hardly a surprise as the same founder (Scott Collins) has shares in both. As well as the new name and a revamp of the decor, Meatliquor dishes, such as the chicken burger, have been added to the original menu.