Your wish for a fried chicken diner and real poutine is granted
When Gregory Llewellyn and Naomi Hart took their much loved fried chicken off the Hartsyard menu to make way for a raft of excellent veggie-focused dishes you could have bottled the tears of fried food lovers across Sydney. But luckily, that famous chicken has gone from a signature menu item to being the star of a tricked up fried chicken diner.
The little, local cocktail bar, the Gretz, is no more – Wish Bone lives here now, complete with slurpee machines peddling brightly coloured boozy slushies, decorative toolboxes, raw wood tables and metal fixtures in place. And while you're here for the chicken, this ain’t fast food. The bird is brined for 24 hours in a salinated liquid that plumps it up before it’s coated in spices. It’s then cooked in a vacuum bag, bathed in buttermilk, battered and fried. This results in some seriously good chook – a golden, crunchy sheath encases the tender mixed thigh and breast pieces. The crisp batter makes for the perfect jagged vessel to swipe up different sauces, and those condiments are worth a visit in their own right. The hot sauce is astringent with vinegar and bright chilli pepper and has just the right level of spice so you won't blow your head off. If you’re sensitive to the chilli kick follow it up with a swipe of the buttermilk ranch.
The sides much like the sauces, also make the chicken sing. The poutine is a jumble of fries wearing a winter blanket of slow cooked, brisket-flecked gravy, with cheesy curds (which they import from Wisconsin, making it one of Sydney’s only legit poutines). The biscuit – baked by the nearby pastry pros at Saga – is a puck of buttery soft bread that comes with an outstanding pork sausage gravy spiked with chicken fat, sage, garlic, milk and cream. Ignore the protestations of your heart and order the mac’n’cheese. Each little elbow carries a with it a creamy, pepperriness topped with a coat of crunchy breadcrumbsand the result is gratifyingly light.
Other things that set Wish Bone far, far a part from fast food is the slick organised service, the cocktails (the Fairlady delivers with toasty bourbon, sweet peach tea and bitters) and the wine list (try a crisp Amble sauvignon blanc to cut through the rich dishes). Beers look towards the places that do fried chicken best – grab an Old Milwaukee Lager from Wisconsin, a Class Fresh from Seoul or a Sample IPA from Victoria.
This isn’t fancy food – but it’s certainly not fast food and in this happy middle ground you get the best fried chicken in town, with cocktails. It's like a wish come true.
|Venue name:||Wish Bone|
125 Enmore Road
|Opening hours:||Daily 5pm-late|