Buck’ing the trend
We never made it to Jacker de Viande, Osteria Piero or Boozy Rouge for that matter. However, we have finally made it to 111 West Regent street where you will now find Buck’s bar!
So why “Buck’s bar”?
Is it named after Uncle Buck, perhaps the owner’s favourite film? Is it a reference to the Buck Rogers burger bar which existed on Queen Street in the eighties ? Or is it a reference to stately, plump Buck Mulligan, perhaps Ulysses ranks as the owner’s favourite book?
Nah, it’s onomatopoeia, simply being the sound a chicken makes, buck buck!
And for good reason as Buck’s specialises in chicken, but this ain’t no KFC…
It’s moody, in a rocker’s paradise kind of way, rockers who like chicken?! Red painted walls, lots of wood, booths for friends or clandestine meet-ups as well as some regular tables and chairs too. A tea light on every table for romance and an AC/DC neon sign behind the DJ booth.
Against the back wall you will find their USP: 50 different kinds of hot sauce from all over the world with names such as “Ass Blaster”, “Sphincter Shrinker”, and “Colon Cleaner” Uh oh! Just go up and help yourself to the sauces. We took a selection back to the table, all with dubious names!
Drinks-wise there are cocktails, bourbons and a healthy selection of beer on draught and bottled (Drygate, Erdinger and mainstream American beers). There’s also “bargain booze” with bottles of Becks for £2.50,
We decided on a Schlitz (as Mr Foodie found one beer he hadn’t yet checked into Untapped) and for Mrs Foodie a Buck Cherry – Jack Daniel’s, Amaretto, Cherry Puree, Vanilla and Coke – was exquisite, if you are a fan of cherry drinks, you’ll love this.
Onto the food menu. Chicken, of course is widely mentioned, but non-chicken eaters needn’t be worried, there’s tofu and halloumi on offer as well as a salad platter. Being mostly about chicken we ordered 3 chicken dishes and one veggie option.
Mr Foodie had just made some homemade halloumi the night before, being the cheese lover that he is. So was eager to taste southern fried halloumi at a surprisingly cheap £3.95.
Four big thick chunks of halloumi which we had accompanied with Buck 35 sauce, which is very sweet, like a sweet hoisin sauce meets marmalade.
The crispy chicken popcorn (£3.50) with garlic aioli sauce were tasty nibbles of Southern Fried goodness. The coating on this was the best. Suitably herby and spicy.
Mr Foodie went for some Nashville fried chicken (£8.50). This comes with three layers of heat – hot (spicy fresh chilli heat), Damn Hot (enough to get your nose running) and Double XX (Strictly for chilli freaks). Being a first timer, Mr Foodie chose hot. 3 pieces of chicken coated in their special coating served on bread with pickles. The chicken inside fell apart and was deliciously moist.
Buff chick burger with lettuce and blue cheese (£9.95). A creamy blue cheese sauce drizzled over a huge chicken breast. It’s some size of a portion. The chips were munchable and thankfully none of that twice cooked soggyness that we have found elsewhere recently.
We couldn’t resist ordering a “fanny bomb”, one of the bargain boozes at £2.50. Who’d have guessed that Irn-bru and Jaggermeister complimented each other?! After the sweet Buck Cherry, Mrs Foodie tried an old fashioned to re-calibrate her taste buds. Thumbs up from her!
Now you cant go wrong with waffles, Nutella, strawberries and ice-cream to share for £6, and Buck’s didn’t. Just enough to sort out that sweet end to a meal without making you feel like you are entering a sugar coma.
We ended the night with some Thompson filter coffee (£2 each). None of that flat white nonsense.
Buck’s ticks the boxes for pre-gig munchies, somewhere to meet up with friends for drinks and food as well as a city centre lunch spot. It’s good value for those on a budget, especially £2.50 booze in the city centre. The vibe is laid-back, service was swift and friendly and the music was loud enough to enjoy but not overpowering. The WiFi signal was a bit iffy though.
Entry is at basement level down a set of stairs so maybe not disabled friendly. Toilets are clearly identified by “cocks” and “hens” and in good order on our visit.
There is live music every Friday from 7pm till 1am.
+ 50 hot sauces to choose from!
+ Finger-lickin’ chicken dishes
+ Southern-style halloumi
+ Great service
+ Good value food and booze
– No wheelchair access (that we could see)
– WiFi signal not the strongest
Disclaimer: The kind folks at Buck’s invited us in for a complimentary dinner. As a cat, Fred is really unhappy that he wasn’t invited too especially seeing there was chicken, but he vouches for the honesty in this review.
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