American

Ma’Plucker

Are you feeling peckish? Why don’t you pluck up the courage and enjoy some Southern hospitality.

Ma’Plucker is a South American inspired chicken diner, with a focus on soul food; fittingly nestled on Soho’s Beak Street.

The venue exudes retro chic, while being quirky and funky in design. The entire interior feels evocative and playful, with its lascivious anthropomorphic hen logo adding a bit of 80’s style bawdy humour; putting a cheeky smile on its diner’s faces.

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The defining feature at Ma’Plucker is its concept of serving 3 types of chicken: pull, fried and rotisserie, in addition to the fact that the chicken is halal, which is great for all us Halal food adventurers.

It has been nearly a year since we last visited Ma’Pluckers, so we were keen to see how they have developed in that time.

The first sign of change was the menu, as there are some new dishes that looked plucking marvellous.

The first dish we tried, was “Sylvia’s fried chicken wrap”, with herb dressing and lettuce. This is a good dish for a quick lunch time pit stop. The chicken was prepared well and had a good level of piquancy, with the fried texture of the chicken balancing well with the crunchy, fresh lettuce. However, personally I would have preferred the herb dressing to have bolder flavours.

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On our previous visit, we sampled Ma’Plucker’s famous take on macaroni and cheese, “Crack and Cheese”, which failed to deliver, as the dish was void of flavour and also extremely dry. It is great to see that good ‘ol Ma has been listening to her flock, as the Crack and Cheese sumptuously cracked open, to deliver a flow of creamy cheese that coated the macaroni to make it moist and supple, and glorious to the tastebuds.

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If you want to try all 3 types of chicken, a good option is “Sylvia’s Love Bucket”, consisting of crispy coated buttermilk dipped chicken, rotisserie chipotle rubbed & roasted chicken, and pulled slow & low chicken.

The shining star was the pulled slow & low chicken, as the shredded pieces of chicken were doused in bold and beautiful Cajun herbs and BBQ sauce that set the tastebuds alight.

The rotisserie chipotle rubbed & roasted chicken was prepared well, but the flavours were moderate, however, the dish was lifted by the selection of Ma’Plucker’s homemade sauces.

The crispy coated buttermilk dipped chicken, similar to our original visit, was poorley executed, with the crispy coating being burnt, thereby leaving a bitter after taste, which was unfortunately unpleasant.

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For sides we opted for “Ma’Plucker’s Homemade Baked Beans”, which was sensational. Sweet and moreish, with a sprinkling of dry herbs to add an extra layer of taste.

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“Ma’s Sweet n Salty Popcorn Sundae” was astonishingly even better than the first time we tried it. The decadent chocolate and the delicious ice cream just seduces the palate into hedonistic submission, with the popcorn providing an innovative taste experience.

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And to finish off our meal we once again had the “Cherry Pie with Vanilla Ice Cream”. During our initial visit, we found this dish, at best, to be just pleasant, as the pastry was too heavy and it had candy stars scattered all over it, which were too hard to bite. Even though the dish looked very similar to what we originally had, the taste and texture had truly transformed to make this dessert quite exceptional. The sweet, sour, tart and warm cherries were divine and the pastry was light and luscious. The ice cream had a dough like texture that was simply exquisite.

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The concept, presentation and innovation of Ma’Plucker is admirable and the food has considerably improved from nearly a year ago. However, there is still some room for improvement  and refinement on certain dishes. We look forward to visiting Ma’Plucker in the future to see how some of the ugly ducklings have transformed into swans.

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