why a chicken shop?
Fried chicken is as much culture as it is cuisine.
With YouTube raps declaring allegiance to their hometown chains, and blogs dedicated to documenting their subtle differences. At the same time, the chicken shop's heritage is being co-opted by a new breed of fowl trader.
Hip new chicken shacks are now roosting in Soho, serving deep fried chicken and waffles.
Head down to streetfood markets and you'll find poshed-up birds on offer, often served up with a knowing postmodern nod to places like Morley's and Chicken Cottage?
Gentri-fried chicken doesn't look likely to kill off the chicken shop thankfully.
Those franchises that opened during the late-noughties recession are still going strong and have long been, and will always be symbol of defiance on the high streets.
More so after 2010, where youth clubs were being closed down one by one with Government cuts; chicken shops became the new ‘chill spot’ for inner city youth. For those who don't have safe homes to go home to, Chicken shops are open late and is a place they can actually feel safe and have fun. Why?
Because there's a special relationship between young Londoners and the people who work there. Bossman will always hook you up with an extra wing or free drink if he likes you, and they don't pressure you to leave after you've eaten.
Despite the nostalgia, the cultural phenomenon of the chicken shop has left its mark with the Chicken Connoisseur going viral with his Pengest Munch YouTube series. The idea that chicken shops were having a "moment" entered the mainstream cultural consciousness. In the months that followed, chicken shops have received shoutouts from Stormzy via his "Big For Your Boots" video, as well as the Youtube sensation of the infamous Chicken Shop Date. It's built up something of a cult following, with fans flocking to the channel to watch the poker-faced presenter settle down for food and a flirt with some of the brightest names in UK grime and rap.
Whoever said romance is dead has clearly never been on a date to Chicken Cottage.