I said to my dining companion, “I’m not going to write a review!” after all I didn’t have my good camera and I wanted to concentrate on catching up with my good friend and fellow food-lover, the fantastically talented singer-songwriter Kimwei. Seriously, visit www.kimwei.com and take a peek at some of his music videos, especially Beauty In Every Element – it is properly amazing stuff.
But here I am, writing a review. I can’t resist sometimes – its like a compulsion all food bloggers have. I’m sat listening to Jay Rayner on Radio 2, so I might have had some inspiration to put finger to keyboard
Absurd Bird just does chicken; yes there are a few other things on their menu out of the realm of chicken but not much else. I trust these guys with my chicken when I want it, but on this occasion I was going to have something a little different.
I remember with great fondness the Absurd Bird bloggers evening we attended a couple of years ago at Exeter Cookery School, where we got our chicken-on when we met their head executive chef who took us through how to make various items on the Absurd Bird menu and we even got a go for ourselves! It was one of the best foodie events I’ve been to with bloggers in mind, and one I will look back fondly on.
It wasn’t until Kimwei said, “hey lets do lunch” and Absurd Bird was suggested (if you bring back your previous receipt you get 20% off your next bill!) that I realised that I had never actually been for a sit-down meal despite the two events that we had attended for them.
The service at lunch is speedy quick. We were about to get in, order and be out within an hour which was super helpful. And as I had expected. the service was friendly and warm.
Absurd Bird is all about soulful Southern Style chicken. Depending on what you go for, the portions are big, and what they do to chicken is genuinely amazing. A quick scour across the menu and you see that they follow a similiar pattern to other casual dining places with a section for burgers, various sub sections, and tucked down at the right hand side is the lunch menu.
There are six dishes that are priced at £6 each. But of course, if you want added fries or salad it is extra. So let us say £8 each. I went for the Mac & Cheese which is served in its own griddle.
It was a suptous savory bacony pasta-y take on this normally boring dish that is often done really badly. This was a good example of how nice Mac & Cheese can be.
And despite the size, it was an ample amount especially with the fries too. It was a bit of carb overload (I could have had the salad…yes I know!) but it sorted me for the rest of the day.
It was with great sadness that we learnt that Absurd Bird’s neighbour Polpo is closing, and this itself is a worrying sign. With so much choice for diners in Exeter, chain and indpendent eating places are in great competition to attract people out of their kitchens. With a greater squeeze on our pockets, eating out can be incredibly expensive.
Absurd Bird is one restaurant that I hope stays afloat. They are a small chain compared to the likes of the floundering Byron burgers and Jamie Oliver’s and I thoroughly recommend a visit. The atmosphere is has a southern charm to it, like walking into an American diner somewhere off an Interstate in Louisiana; and they do cocktails too!
They are one of the only places in the UK that serves genuine American Moonshine, a potent yet delectable spirit that goes fantastically with mixers and on its own. We attended a cocktail event back in September which was great fun, and it showed off the true range of drinks their mixologists can create for you. And I am pleased to say – they have a happy hour too!