Nando’s Farringdon, food review: ‘Same old, still good’

The new Nando's in Farringdon

The new Nando's in Farringdon - Credit: Archant

There are three things certain in life: taxes, death – and Nando’s.

The new Nando's in Farringdon

The new Nando's in Farringdon - Credit: Archant

No matter to which corner of this green and pleasant land you travel, the ubiquitous “cheeky” Portuguese chicken chain will make its presence known.

In the capital alone, there are no less than 86 restaurants bearing the red and black chicken emblem – the newest of which has popped up in the old Ember Bar in Farringdon.

But how different can a new Nando’s be to any of the other 85?

This is a large restaurant, with two floors of seating, but tables have been laid out cleverly to give you space and a bit of privacy.

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Many of the older restaurants have been revamped with a new South African-inspired design to reflect the brand’s birthplace, and this Nando’s has been given the same treatment.

Textured and patterned wood panelling pops, while bright upholstery contrasts against the darker walls.

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Like almost every regular Nando’s diner I know, I always order the same thing (lemon and herb chicken in pitta with peri-peri chips) but I’m feeling adventurous today.

First we tuck into our “appeteasers”: juicy chicken wings at medium spice which have a lovely fiery kick, and a roasted red pepper dip deep in pepper flavour with warm pitta.

It lacks the whack of chilli advertises, but for a spice wimp, that’s fine by me.

Onto the mains.

The quinoa salad is a great match for the flavoursome lemon and herb-marinated chicken, but I’d have liked a few less leaves and more of the salty feta, creamy avocado and lusciously soft sweet potato chunks.

My housemate’s half chicken with oh-so-salty spicy peri-peri chips is droolingly good, with a lovely layer of crispy skin on top.

We finish with their signature frozen yoghurt – today it’s mango flavour, which was a lovely palette-cleanser after all that chicken.

This is a solid addition to the ever-expanding chain.

No, it’s not doing much different – but would you really want it to?

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