Review of Chicken and Blues in East Dorset
Chicken and Blues was launched in Bournemouth in 2013 by two friends – Joshua Simons and Steve Crawford. Started with a shared passion of Southern Fried Chicken and proper BBQ, they opened their first shop in Boscombe, then called the Chicken Shack. They quickly had queues out of the door, recognition from national media and winning a number of national awards! Now, they have two stores, in Ashley Cross and Winton, and are exclusively available across East Dorset through Deliveroo.
In 2020, Chicken and Blues caught my eye because they were quick to offer and support the NHS staff as the Pandemic took hold. They not only offered 50% off for all NHS staff, but they also launched a ‘pay it forward’ campaign which allowed customers to buy extra meals which Chicken and Blues then delivered to hospitals in the area. Since March 2020, they have delivered over 10,000 meals to NHS staff – a really remarkable feat through such a difficult time for the hospitality industry.
Since then, they have also donated 1000 meals to children during school holidays who would normally receive free school meals as well as launching their Neighbourhood Fund, investing £5000 into local schemes to benefit their local customers.
Its fair to say… Chicken and Blues don’t just serve tasty chicken!
In November last year (2020), Chicken and Blues also launched their new plant based menu. Intrigued with a chicken shop launching a fully plant based menu, I was surprised to find out that the plant based menu is very similar to the standard menu. Working with the plant based company THIS, Chicken and Blues incorporate THIS isn’t chicken and THIS isn’t bacon into their dishes and have worked hard to source plant based spinach wraps and develop a range of plant based sauces that go beyond the standard ‘vegan mayo’ that you usually see on plant based menus.
I have issues with lactose tolerance so I sometimes head towards the plant based alternatives to avoid any painful consequences… but it is unusual to have so much choice! I have now ordered the plant based Southern Fried wrap twice and I have to say that it is delicious. It is hard to tell that I am not eating chicken and at no point is flavour or texture compromised to make the dish plant based.
I have also tried the Smokey BBQ Cauli ‘wings’ as well as their standard chicken wings and they are just as delicious… both sticky and full of flavour (although obviously the texture differs slightly in this case).
I thoroughly recommend Chicken and Blues. Whether you want to eat in or grab a takeaway, they have plenty of options… even some delicious caramel filled churros to finish off the meal!
You can order through Deliveroo for local delivery or can see their full menu and locations via their website – www.chickenandblues.com
Chicken and Blues features on our searchable Directory along with over 550 Dorset based food and drink businesses.
All orders fully paid for – they did not know it was for a review.
Photos by Heather Brown.