You’ve heard of a seafood restaurant. Now hear of a poultry restaurant, because that is exactly what Republic of Chicken is. It is the front face of a huge poultry company that processes chicken in more ways than the average delicatessen does. Some of the delicatessen products – mortadella, chicken sausage, chicken ham and chicken salami for instance – are available on the menu as an Assorted Cold Cut Platter (Rs 445).
The result is that the menu consists of a variety of chicken-based dishes from across the globe. The finest advertisement of the company is the Spit Roast Chicken (Rs 170 for half, Rs 280 for full). It is pure, undiluted chicken, obviously fed by a special process, so that the meat is tender, delicious, not stringy and the skin crisp and thin. Served with a decent hummus and a strictly average muhalil (Lebanese pickle), it is for lovers of poultry. The Chicken Glutinous Rice (Rs 85) is packed with so much flavour that I was tempted to ask for the company’s own chicken stock powder at the deli counter that dominates the restaurant. I was told that it was on the anvil.
Not everything is dominated by chicken like the Baked Chicken Nuggets (Breaded) Rs 135 that is served with a particularly tongue-tingling mayo. For example, there is Republic Potato Skins (Chicken) at Rs 135 that contain only a small proportion of chicken. The rest consists of a large half baked potato, cheese sauce and English vegetables. Even the Chicken Chaat (Rs 145) contains several vegetables in a pleasantly tangy sauce. Chicken plays a minor role. You may not mistake it for the chaat wallah on the street corner, but it is an unexpected addition to an already funky, out-of-the-box menu.
The desi angle is formed with the Curry in a Hurry section, in which I tried The Republic Curry (Chicken) Rs 185. Republic of Chicken does not give the impression of being what is generally known as a family restaurant. It is wi-fi enabled and has plug points at every table where you can plug in your laptop. Yet, the Chicken Curry was the kind of offering you would get at a dhaba. With an onion-ginger-garlic base, it is served with your choice of accompaniment: pita bread or steamed rice.
One of the great attractions of this restaurant that looks like a fast food outlet but instead encourages customers to hang around for a long while is their value for money Coca Cola offer. Pay Rs 35 per head, and you are entitled to drink as many glasses as you want. Kind of encourages you to spend hours and hours there. Plus there’s a decent vegetarian menu too.
Eros 48, 3rd floor, South Extension Part 1
3rd floor, City Square Mall, Rajouri Garden
Tel: 1822 102 1033, 46508673
Average cost of a meal for two: Rs 350
Open from 11 am to 11 pm
Credit cards accepted; alcohol not being served yet