12 Market Row
Rob Greig / Time Out
Time Out rating:
Time Out says
Mon Nov 26 2012
Wishbone’s not a destination for a hot date. It’s best avoided if you don’t like getting your fingers messy, and by diners who insist on ‘healthy eating’. Wishbone’s a fast-food joint in one of Brixton’s covered markets, with hard seats, high counters, wire mesh above the bar and playful Americana. But as fried chicken joints go, it’s finger lickin’ good.
Battery chickens are not used; instead, free-range birds are reared slowly for flavoursome, happier meat. We ordered the ‘thighs’, which turned out to be some of the tastiest chicken nuggets we’ve tried – breaded and crisp-fried, served in baskets lined with greaseproof paper, with either ‘salt ’n’ pepa’ or a Thai-style drench of tamarind dressing, mint, chilli and chopped shallots. Other options include quarter or half chickens, buffalo wings with blue cheese sauce, Korean-style double-fried chicken, or a chicken sandwich. Most of these cost around a fiver – more than you’ll pay in any other Brixton fried chicken joint, but that’s the price for a free bird.
It’s the pricing of the side dishes that raised our eyebrows: deep-fried mac ’n’ cheese at £4.50 turned out to be a polystyrene cup of breaded croquettes, molten in the centre with a dangerously hot cheese-and-pasta centre. The ingredient cost of the macaroni and filling I’d estimate at a few pence, but it was still an intriguing and enjoyable dish. The skinny fries, at £2.50 for a portion size Ronald McDonald would call ‘regular’, were perhaps even cheekier.
But this is no high-street chicken joint. There are also great sours from the bar: a base spirit such as bourbon or gin, mixed up with lemon or lime juice, a sweetener, and the option of egg white or ice, for £5.50. The wines by the glass are more than decent. And the service on our visit was unremittingly friendly and attentive, the soundtrack suitably hip. This hole-in-the-wall has a good vibe.
That’s all there is to Wishbone – Taking junk food, and making it good. On our visit there was no queue – it was early in the week. We’re not sure it’s worth waiting in line for, but for a quick chicken fix, this almost beats that original recipe.
Wishbone 12 Market Row
- Cross Street:
020 7274 0939
- Opening hours:
Meals served noon-10pm Tue-Sun.
Tube: Brixton tube/rail
Meal for two with drinks and service: around £35
- 12 Market Row
- 020 7274 0939
- 12 Market Row
Food and drink
Eating and drinking facilities. Restaurant