Gourmet Fried Chicken: Soul Food Comes to Cairo with Westown Hub Diner
After a more than satisfying experience at Butcher’s Burger in Westown Hub, we couldn’t help but pay a visit to its partner in crime, Gourmet Fried Chicken. Owned by the same restaurateurs, the two diners sit beside each other, almost meshing into one super restaurant – the two venues are separated only by a thin wall.
After being seated, we instantly fell in love with the artwork and the atmosphere of the Gourmet Fried Chicken. Much like Butcher’s Burger, wood is the main aesthetic theme, but there are hints of kitsch peppering the place – especially with the tallow minibus prop piece outside.
Serving specialties from the soul food kitchen, Gourmet Fried Chicken menu offers American-style eats including Fried Chicken Meal served with Butter Waffles (59LE), Big Mama Special – a platter comprised of three fried chicken pieces – mac and cheese served with corn bread and coleslaw (69LE) and the Soul Food Platter – pairing 3 pieces of fried chicken with gravy sauce, mashed potatoes and a corn on cob (69LE) – as well as many other luscious Southern choices.
Anxious to test the authenticity of this scarce type of cuisine, we opted for Mushroom Gravy Chicken served with butter waffles (59LE) and a GFC Tower – a fried chicken sandwich with toppings including onions, jalapenos, pickles, ranch dressing and served with fries (44LE).
Thirty minutes after ordering, our food was arrived and we were keen to try the restaurant’s interpretation of a southern American classic pairing of chicken and waffles. For those who haven’t tried it before, it’s not as peculiar a combination as it sounds – stripped the dish down and you have chicken with cooked batter. Unfortunately, however, the waffles were not stuffed with chicken as stated in the menu, while the chicken and mushroom gravy served on top was sparse.
The GFC sandwich was, on the other hand, the definition of a perfect fried chicken sandwich. The chicken itself was cooked perfectly, boasting a crispy exterior and a tender interior, while the sweetness of the coleslaw perfectly balanced the chilly spike from the jalapenos.
Of the dessert options, we ordered the Churros (24LE) – a Spanish fried-dough pasty that has its cairorevamp_users in Spain, but has seeped into American south-western cuisine via Latin America. Golden, crispy and incredibly tasty, there was little to complain about with the simple dessert – which one might compare to the Middle Eastern bala7 el sham – especially with the rich chocolate dip that comes with it.
Simple is a key word here; when you break down the food at GFC, it’s all very uncomplicated. But what will keep us coming back to the restaurant is that, Mushroom Gravy Chicken aside, it delivers with big flavours. As for the dreaded question of longevity and consistency, GFC is the kind of place that can become a go-to favourite – a valuable trait in Cairo we are, more than most, creatures of habit.