Saturday, 2 May 2020

Ji the Chicken Shop, Taiwanese fried chicken, Cardiff review


Good Friend chicken in London’s Chinatown has always caught my eye.

Serving unfeasibly large schniztel like chicken breasts, their Taiwanese fried chicken has been acclaimed by some of London’s top food bloggers and made it into Eater London’s list of best fried chicken places.

So, when a branch opened on Cardiff’s Cowbridge Road East, it was an exciting day.


Known as Ji, instead of Good Friend (I’m not sure why), it’s one of five UK branches with two in London and one in York and Cambridge.

Unsurprisingly, the menu focuses on fried chicken with options including crispy chicken skin, volcanic cheesy chicken and popcorn chicken alongside crispy king prawns, crispy octopus and crispy squid as well as bubble teas and fries. 


What sets Ji apart from other fried chicken shops is their cornucopia of seasoning powders which you can choose from including plum, cheese, lemon, cumin, paprika, garlic and numbing chilli.

 
On the recommendation of a well-informed Twitterer we ordered a boneless chicken thigh (£5.50) with seaweed, plum and chilli. A whopper of a flattened piece of meat was enjoyably tender and coated in golden grease-free crumbs topped with a savoury, sweet and delicately mouth-tingling seasoning. Some parts of the crumb appeared to just contain crispy skin instead of meat; I’m not complaining. 

 
Even better was the crispy chicken breast (£6) which was so large it was cut into two pieces. More plentiful than the thigh and yet still very juicy, we opted for curry seasoning which delivered a proper good hit of chip shop style curry. 


A generously filled bag of popcorn chicken (£3.50) was also excellent and cracking value. Nuggets of tender brown flesh were coated in the bubbly, crisp and golden breadcrumb which was seasoned with more of that compelling curry powder.


A massive bag of crunchy and fluffy chips (£2) were dusted with sweet plum powder and mild yet mouth numbing chilli powder.


Ji is a fun and tasty addition to Cowbridge Road East. If you’re looking for delicious yet different fried chicken then it’s definitely worth checking out.

They're currently closed but I can't wait to visit them again when they lift their shutters.

The Details:

Address - Ji the Chicken Shop, 231 Cowbridge Rd E, Cardiff CF11 9AL
Web - https://deliveroo.co.uk/menu/cardiff/ninian-park/ji-the-chicken-shop-cardiff
Telephone - 029 2037 6289

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