The Hen House is in DunLaoghaire. It’s chicken lover heaven. I’d picked up a GrabOne voucher back in September for it. Two courses from their A La Carte menu for €24. Pretty decent offer I have to say. It’s quite a large space and has quite a good variety of table configurations including banquets and circular booths.
We visited early (5 p.m.) on a Thursday evening. As they only open at 5 it was extremely quiet. We were promptly seated by the window, perfect for some people watching as it’s on a busy walk way facing out to the harbour. The menus of course have their cute little chicken logo.
We both went for the Hen House Wings (usually €6.95). Mine the honey sesame which were exactly how I expected them to be. Tasty and sticky and quite a decent portion size too.
The other wings were described as Fiery Hot. Alas they fell far short of the mark and instead of being fiery hot they were only luke warm. Again a good size portion but if heat is your thing in a wing then these will leave you out in the cold.
For drinks we opted for a bottle of Chilean Sav Blanc called El Caminador keenly priced at €22.50. I’d had it before in Mulberry Garden and loved it. It was equally good here and actually €1.50 cheaper too.
For main course he went for the Hen House take on chicken supreme (€18.95). It was wood grilled in citrus and served on herb crushed baby potatoes. It came with two different types of sauce. Butternut squash and carrot puree and mustard and tarragon along with some (very) crispy pancetta and green beans. It was quite a large plate of food, but it also came with a size order of seasonal vegetables too. It would have been ample enough on its own but who is going to turn their nose up at extra food!
Both sauces were very tasty. I particularly liked the mustard and tarragon one and kept dipping my chips into it. The chicken was tender and moist and the citrus flavours had really seeped into it so every bite had a nice tang off it. The herb baby potatoes, which I’m a fan of were just gorgeous.
I went for the Fried Buttermilk Chicken (€15.95) for my main course. It was marinated in thyme and served with chive coleslaw, chips and Jalapeno honey dip. I love buttermilk chicken. I could eat it by the bucket load (and may have before). It was perfect for me. It had a nice crisp to it without being crackling in nature. With buttermilk chicken the longer you marinate it for the better it comes out. I’m going to go out on a limb and say they marinated it for quite a while because it was gorgeous.
The chips while perfectly fine and edible did let it down a bit. They were the usual frozen chips you see in so many places these days. I can’t help but think hand cooked ‘real’ chips would accompany the chicken so much better.
The sides were a triumph for me. I very rarely eat coleslaw. This one however was a feast for the taste-buds. I loved the addition of red onion and chives to it. The Jalapeno honey dip was nice and fiery and probably should have been the sauce for those Fiery Hot wings I mentioned earlier.
The Hen House has lots of little touches that make it a nice place to dine. It’s inviting and the service was excellent. It has the potential to be a really great hangout kind of place which caters to all types of people. I think I would like to go back maybe a little later in the evening when its busier and see what kind of buzz it has then.
The Hen House The Pavillion DunLaoghaire http://www.thehenhouse.ie/