HomeReviews - UKBilly and the Chicks (Free Range Chicken) – Soho, London

Billy and the Chicks (Free Range Chicken) – Soho, London

HALAL STATUS All chicken is Halal (except the spicy variety – cooked in contaminated oil) • Alcohol served • DJ music nights

Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free RangeYou wouldn’t think that a snuggly located backstreet restaurant off Dean Street in London’s Soho would happen to serve not just Halal chicken, but free range Halal chicken.

Well, that’s precisely what Billy and the Chicks offer down St Anne’s Court – chickens that are “free range Cotswold Whites, nicknamed ‘The Ballerina’ due to the way they dance around the fields”.

Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,In fact, their “British Free Range Fried Chicken” is so British and free range, that the menu has Queen Victoria depicted as tucking into one of their free range drumsticks.

Now, while all chicken is Halal, the only variety that isn’t is the spicy-coated chicken, e.g. zingers, spicy chicken wings, etc., as these are cooked in oil that’s used for frying non-Halal meat.

In any case, the Islamic Center on Berwick Street is only a convenient 5 min walk from the place.

 

FREE RANGE HALAL CHICKEN

Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,

Free range Halal fried chicken £3.80 per piece.

Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,

Starting with the business side of things, exactly how good was the free range poultry in comparison to its not-so-free counterpart?

Well, firstly, and quite unsurprisingly, they’re far dearer at £3.80 a piece (yup, per piece!).

What’s more, the textural contrast between the two wasn’t as obvious as you might think, paricularly when done battered like this. These were evidently less firmer in texture, but not appreciably so.

Taste-wise, since these were coated in a crispy batter, the touch of herby-heat was the dominent flavour. Additionally, these were a tad on the oily side too.

But, were they worth the £3.80 per piece price tag? That’s the question!

VEGGIE BURGER

burger, vegi burger, Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,

The Big Poppa (Veggie Option) – Giant poppa of ticklemore cheese, fresh lettuce and lime ‘n’ chive whip £9

Vegi Burger, Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant, burgerHello; what have we stumbled upon here? The Big Poppa? The Big Poppa indeed!

This is as unique a veggie burger as we’ve ever had the pleasure of devouring.

Nestled between two beautifully toasted brioche buns was a large, doughnut-shaped patty, with an ultra-crispy breaded encasing, which, when bitten into, released a copious amount of melted ticklemore cheese that was rich and creamy, with a floral-cum-herby taste. Couple that with the zesty lime and chive sauce topping, and this really sang the high notes.

The dish of the day for us, and one we’d recommend taking that turn off Dean Street for.

SIDES

GravySaladColeslawMacaroni & CheeseCorn on the CobHand Cut ChipsMushroomsGherkinsHoly Fuck Sauce
sauce, Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,

Homemade gravy £3

This Homemade Gravy sauce is an absolute must have!

The depth of flavour extracted for this Halal chicken stock was incredible. Still dreaming about this!

Coleslaw, slaw, Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Salad £2.30

A red cabbage-dominated bowl of fresh salad which, while functioning as a palate cleanser of sorts, makes for a good healthy accompaniment to all that fried stuff.

coleslaw, slaw, Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Coleslaw £2.30

While this predominately apple coleslaw bowl was really well executed, with the subtle sweetness of the coleslaw working well against the zingy apple therein, some may, on account of its size, find this difficult to finish.

Mac and cheese, Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Macaroni & Cheese £4

Simple and well cooked macaroni with plenty of gooey cheese – what more could one ask for or further comment upon?

corn on the cob, Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Corn on the cob, crispy shallots & chilli £2

This corn on the cob was supposed to have been cooked with chilli oil. Sadly, the chilli didn’t come through at all.

Had the corn been grilled instead to give it that touch of smokiness, this could have really gone well with the gorgeously crispy shallot topping, which, truth be told, has the potential of being served as a stand-alone side in its own right it was that good.

chips, fries, Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Chips £2.50

Skin-on hand cut chips that were nice and crispy.

We couldn’t help but use the aforementioned Homemade Gravy sauce as a dip for this.

mushroom, Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,

Fried mushrooms £2.30

These fried mushrooms were great – small and addictive. And again, went wonderfully well with the Homemade Gravy sauce.

Gherkin, Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Sliced Gherkins £1.80

Thickly cut bowl of gherkins for £1.80?! Not sure where this belonged in the grand scheme of things.

Holy fuck sauce billy and the chicks

Holy fuck hot sauce £1

Yup, that’s what it’s called! Now, if this name was chosen on the basis of the genuine first-time reaction of the guinea pig who tried this, then we can kinna appreciate that.

This really was bloody hot! It wasn’t anything unique mind you; just very hot, which begged the question: what’s the point?

DESSERT

apple pie, Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,

Nutella pies £3.50

apple pie, Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant, dessertA freshley made Nutella pie, with an outlandishly crispy-crumbly pastry exterior.

The layer of the famed chocolate therein was hot, sticky, and just right in terms of quantity so as not to be overly sweet.

Instead, and lightly sprinkled with icing sugar, this was a simple little ending to our visit to Billy and the Chicks.

DRINKS

drink, Billy and the Chicks, Halal, Chicken, free Range

Mojito

You’ll notice all that ice up top with the beverage at the bottom? Well, therein lied the problem.

A few sips and you were done; which was a pity really, because the initial taste of the intense kick of lime prematurely had us really excited us, until things died away towards the end.

Strawberry milkshake, Billy and the chicks, Halal, free range, chicken, Soho, London, Dean Street, Restaurant,

Strawberry milkshake £3.80

A fresh, expertly made and silky smooth strawberry milkshake that had just the right balance to it.

THE ROAR
Billy and the Chicks
3.5 FTL's Roar
2.5 Pride's Roar (1 Roar)
Alcohol/ Pork?
  • YES/ NO
FSA HYGIENE RATING
Last Checked: 29/04/18
Facilities
  • CHILD SEATING
  • DISABLED FACILITIES
  • UBER EATS
  • DELIVEROO
Summary
It's not easy to find a Halal-friendly chicken shop in the heart of London, let alone one that serves free range chicken. Billy and the Chicks has enough going for it to be regarded a genuine place of interest for chicken lovers, particularly if you stick to our Menu Recommendation below.

While one Lion visited this restaurant last year only to come away not thinking much of The Big Poppa burger, they've certainly made some significant improvements, because this is one of the best burgers we've so far had this year, and that too a veggie version.

NOTE: While all chicken is Halal, the only variety that isn't is the spicy-coated chicken, e.g. zingers, spicy chicken wings, etc., as these are cooked in oil that's used for frying non-Halal meat.

And with the Islamic Center around the corner on Berwick Street, this is definitely option for a post-Jumu'ah bite.

Menu Recommendation

Drinks - Strawberry Milkshake

Side - Mushroom with Homemade Gravy

Main - The Big Poppa (Veggie Burger)

Dessert - Nutella Pie

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PRICE
ATMOSPHERE
SERVICE
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Billy and the Chicks
27-28 St Anne’s Ct, Soho, London W1F 0BN.

T: +44 (0)20 7287 8111 | W: billyandthechicks.com

Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 11:00-23:00

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