Sweet Chick is an Amer­ic­an gour­met chick­en and waffles res­taur­ant, I had pre­vi­ously tried its culin­ary delights on a trip to New York. The first res­taur­ant was opened by John Sey­mour in 2013, he soon after con­nec­ted with Nas in 2015 who came onboard the pro­ject as fin­an­cial back­er of the res­taur­ant. Togeth­er they have opened sev­er­al res­taur­ants across New York, on the lower east side of Man­hat­tan, Wil­li­ams­burg, Pro­spect Heights in Brook­lyn, and most recently in Ver­non Street Queens­bridge, where Nas grew up. In 2017 they opened on Fair­fax in Los Angeles and now a new branch has opened over­seas here in Lon­don, UK. You can ima­gine my excite­ment, that little piece of Amer­ica was com­ing to my house.

Loc­ated just off Oxford Street repla­cing the Itali­an Carluccio’s at 8 Mar­ket Place, it’s in a prime loc­a­tion for din­ners in Fitzrovia. Arriv­ing at the res­taur­ant on a Sat­urday night it was buzz­ing as expec­ted. Sweet Chick had only been open for a few weeks so reser­va­tions couldn’t be made in advance, which meant we had to wait for an hour and half for a table of four. We signed up and were giv­en a place in the queue through the ‘Walk In’ app which I thought was pretty cool. I didn’t mind the wait, for me it was a good sign if this res­taur­ant was this pop­u­lar already.

Once inside, the dim light­ing and hip interi­or gave the per­fect ambi­ence cre­at­ing a chilled atmo­sphere. My eyes instantly caught the pink ‘It Was All A Dream’ neon sign behind the bar, a line taken from Notori­ous B.I.G’s track – Juicy. It can be found in all Sweet Chick res­taur­ants and it gave me a warm feel­ing inside. Suc­cess had been a dream for rap­pers such as Big­gie Smalls and Nas com­ing from hard­ships, but they believed in them­selves and kept going to mani­fest their dreams. Nas has been extend­ing his fin­an­cial empire with vari­ous invest­ments and open­ing this res­taur­ant in the heart of Lon­don shows just how far he has come, and I couldn’t be hap­pi­er for his suc­cess. For me this res­taur­ant chain is a test­a­ment to us all to fol­low our dreams as we can make any­thing hap­pen.

The staff were super friendly, I asked what it was like work­ing here and they told me, ‘it was like being part of a fam­ily and it didn’t feel like it was a job’. I liked that. The good vibes could be seen they danced around serving cus­tom­ers with a smile. I felt very wel­comed and this felt like more of a social space than just a res­taur­ant for a quick bite. There was most def­in­itely ‘No Bad Energy’ here.

Look­ing closely at the drinks menu there was cre­ativ­ity in the cock­tail names who those who know about Hip Hop such as, ‘Chris­toph­er Wal­lace’ named after Notori­ous B.I.G. It would have been nice to see some non-alco­hol­ic cock­tails to the menu, but I found there was still a great­er selec­tion here such as non-alco­hol­ic beer was sold with a selec­tion of lem­on­ades com­pared to its New York branches.

There was a lot to try on the menu. We ordered the buck­et of bis­cuits, mac and cheese and chick­en chilli for starters, chick­en and waffles for the main with corn­bread as a side. Veget­ari­an chick­en is avail­able here just like it’s Amer­ic­an chains, as well as the chick­en being halal which came as good news to many Muslims and veget­ari­ans such as myself! There is also a bone­less chick­en option. As much as Nas’ music unites us in his spoken word, we weren’t going to be excluded at his eat­ery.

The food took a while to arrive but once it came, it was evid­ent because of how fresh it was.  The bis­cuits were soft, and the corn­bread was moist, it had been worth the wait. The Veget­ari­an chick­en was deli­cious. I’m not usu­ally a fan of Seit­an (a meat sub­sti­tute) but they some­how make it work well, not too dry and fla­vour­ful with a nice tex­ture. The mac and cheese was divine, incred­ibly rich and creamy. One thing I love about this res­taur­ant is its funky menu, com­bin­ing ingredi­ents I wouldn’t think of myself not being famil­i­ar with this cuisine, my fel­low din­ners were pleas­antly sur­prised at the sweet and chick­en com­bin­a­tions. Prob­ably some­thing you love or hate but I recom­mend you try. Again I felt like this din­ning exper­i­ence is about get­ting you out of your com­fort zone and try­ing some­thing dif­fer­ent.

I loved the décor, the little things like the waffle iron hanging up and the ghetto blaster amongst fig­ures of chick­ens on dis­play. There were vari­ous posters of artists such as Slick Rick, Raek­won, Rakim and Mobb Deep who had all per­formed in oth­er Sweet Chick res­taur­ants. I’m hop­ing we’ll have some spe­cial events to look for­ward to in this Lon­don spot. My favour­ite piece of them all was the ‘no smoking’ sign in the toi­lets, which was a clas­sic photo of Nas rolling a blunt out­side Queens­bridge Houses in the ori­gin­al photo.

The whole exper­i­ence was thor­oughly enjoy­able, relaxed and social. It brought me back some good memor­ies from my vis­its to New York and its city vibes. And of course, the soundtrack was per­fect upbeat enough to be vibing but not over­power­ing so con­ver­sa­tions couldn’t be had. Music from Del La Soul to Tey­ana Taylor and more nu skool sounds. I love any­where I go where I can look up tracks and artists I’m not famil­i­ar with and I think Sweet Chick Lon­don is going to become one of my reg­u­lar spots to chill with friends whilst I add to my playl­ists.

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Faizah Cyanide

Faizah Cyanide

Faizah works in clin­ic­al research by pro­fes­sion and has been an avid Hip Hop lov­er since the early 90’s, hav­ing cre­ated her own Hip Hop event, ‘Breakin’ Bound­ar­ies’ in the early 2000’s which was pre­dom­in­antly based around the concept of bboy battles, she has worked with sev­er­al inter­na­tion­al events pro­moters and dan­cers to inspire oth­ers through this art­form.

About Faizah Cyanide

Faizah Cyanide
Faizah works in clinical research by profession and has been an avid Hip Hop lover since the early 90's, having created her own Hip Hop event, 'Breakin' Boundaries' in the early 2000's which was predominantly based around the concept of bboy battles, she has worked with several international events promoters and dancers to inspire others through this artform.