Bird review: ‘The chicken bacon doughnut is why you’re fat’

Bird's Fried Chicken Doughnut. Picture: Paul Winch-Furness

Bird's Fried Chicken Doughnut. Picture: Paul Winch-Furness - Credit: Archant

Islington’s answer to the gourmet heart attack.

Dining is having something of a binge-purge moment.

From cold-press veg juices and algae sprinkles at one end of the scale, to improbable burgers and deep-fried Mac n cheese at the other, we seem to have contracted a national eating disorder.

Firmly at the greasy end of the spectrum is the new chicken bacon doughnut this summer at Bird (branches in Camden Town, Shoreditch and Holloway Road).

Yup, this is a glazed doughnut, halved and filled with a leg of fried chicken, a bacon rasher and a smear of melted cheese sauce, which sounds enticingly like something from my favourite website c.2010 Thisiswhyyou’re subtitled “where dreams become heart attacks”.

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Always up for a challenge I enlist my brother to join me in trying one of these wondrous creations, after all, what are little brothers for, if not to accompany one on bilious gastronomic expeditions?

First impressions tend to the processed, uniform beige of so much terrible mid-Western American diner food, they’re not lying about the components and the tower of sugar-coated fried dough is daunting.

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But there’s no going back and the first bite, if sweeter than expected, is actually pretty nice.

It helps that each ingredient is faultless, the chicken juicy and beautifully seasoned - I’d be prepared to go out on a limb and call it the best fried chicken I’ve tasted - the doughnut soft and pillowy, the cheese offering essential gunginess, the bacon bridging the gap between savoury filling and sweet glaze.

This isn’t the stoner confection from hell you might expect.

At £8 it’s a fun summer gimmick, and a clever way to attract new customers – I would definitely return for more fried chicken and doughnuts, but next time I might eat them separately.

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