It's all about chicken, chicken perceived and handled differently. Spin the Hen has taken the street food chicken we know to another level, serving it with finesse and style. Street food is now stylish and served in a funky space using colored boxes and different kinds of bread and sauces depending on the sandwich's name. Chicken is now trendy.
Down in Beirut, in the heart of the capital facing Martyr's Square, is Spin the Hen. A new chicken place has opened its doors serving a selection of grilled and fried chicken sandwiches alongside the famous marinated grilled chicken in a box.
The decor is catchy. Industrial, it's made of wood and steel spread on two floors. An open kitchen you can see behind the wall, many high stools and two bars, one on each floor. On the lower area is a table where guests can share a meal. Sit and order!
The many choices where chicken rules:
- Chicken corn soup: Simple and tasty, the chicken corn soup we rarely find at restaurants is now available to go. Shredded chicken and tender corn in a flavorful soup.
- Fatteh with a touch of modernism, clean and clear, a firm Laban, a touch of tahina, super crunchy fried toast, grilled pine nuts and a bit of melted butter to add a boost of flavor. As I said, I enjoyed the modernist touch of it and they clearly respect food safety guidelines.
- Indian tandoori, a very spicy sandwich served with a yogurt dip on the side. Smooth fries, tender chicken and the sauce: Bam! An explosion of flavor and spices. The sandwiches are made in markouk bread that's crispy and thin, putting the ingredients up front.
- Shredded veal in a markouk sandwich with tahini sauce and fresh mint. I'd make the veal chunks a bit bigger so you can appreciate their flavor more.
- The Mexican is a big hit, probably my favorite. Tender chicken, a colorful sandwich filled with roasted peppers in a tortilla wrap. I loved it and the melting cheese.
- Dukkah: Special, as the description says.
- The classic... I love classics. French bread with chicken, garlic (but mayo for me) and pickles with French fries.
- The Mac and Chicken is a restaurant's version of a nouille au poulet. Macaroni, chicken, bechamel and cheese. The flavors rock, the portion size is excellent. Loved the bechamel consistency, the macaroni size and texture as well as the top melting cheese.
- Hummus as good as it should be generously covered with olive oil and most importantly prepared without garlic.
- Chicken pie and yogurt or the known Riz 3al Djeij. Loved the creation! Rice mixed with spices, crushed almond and pines with minced meat stuffed in a bread ball. A flaky bread ball and the rice inside best enjoyed with yogurt. That's a meal without the mess.
- Marinated grilled chicken: it's the chicken you know enjoyed all around Lebanon with a classier approach. A blue box with half a chicken inside marinated and cooked to perfection.
We were not done yet... It's Tamriyyeh time! Tamriyyeh is the latest trend, a dessert many fast food shops are proposing on the menu. Shawarmanji, Le Merou and now Spin the Hen. The Tamriyyeh they are proposing contains milk when the original one is only made of Semolina wrapped in a thin dough. Anyway, whatever it is or called, I love it's crunch and flakiness stuffed with a milk and semolina mix, topped with sugar powder and dipped in sugar syrup. A must try!
It's called Spin the Hen, soon invading the country with it's chicken specialities.