Hen House Newmarket Square?
Saw a blurb on the Hen House, a new chicken and waffle place cited in the Herald, purveyor of news on all things chowish. Anyone tried it and if so, how is it?
I went last week and though it was OK. The Sysco truck parked out front as I walked in made me nervous. I ordered Wings and Waffle, with Hot Buffalo sauce, Cajun Butter on my waffle and maple syrup.
I was asked whether I wanted my wings tossed in the wing sauce or sauce on the side, I asked for them to be tossed in the sauce yet the sauce came on the side anyway. I called this to the attention of the cashier and she quickly had the problem fixed.
At first glance I was very skeptical of the wings because I believe, in a fairly dogmatic way, that wings should never be breaded under any circumstance and yet these were. I will say that despite the breading the wings were enjoyable, large juicy wings with a decent buffalo sauce. I would put them third behind Buffs and Redbones in my pantheon.
As for the waffle, it was fairly nondescript and unfortunately served kinda cold, it didn't melt the butter. The cajun butter went well with the buffalo wings and despite what I have read on other websites the syrup was not real maple. One real highlight was the soda, which is locally made, Mercury I think.
I went with the husband tonight. My waffle was hot. Butter melted, and the chicken was done well and seasoned to the bone. Rootbeer on tap was tasty.
I drove by there this weekend and saw it for the first time. Had to go in and try, since it was such an odd concept. It's likeable, though not high cuisine by any means. The buttermilk waffles were a little insubstantial. Just a base for everything else. I liked the combinations between the butter (we got 5 herb), syrup (clove honey), and sauce (apricot chipotle). We live near there, so we'll go now and then. Didn't try any of the other items, but the root beer was good.
I stopped in Sunday afternoon on a whim, there were about 20 or so folks in there. I got the impression that they are still in shake-down mode. I ordered the waffles and wings (buttermilk/whipped butter/clover honey syrup/ hot buffalo wings) It took about 20 minutes for my order to come up. Like some others, the waffle could have been hotter, butter wasn't really melting. I'm no waffle aficionado, but I did enjoy the waffle, light and airy with a bit of mild crunch, not a leaden stone in the gut. I really enjoyed the clover honey maple syrup too.
I'm with ChicenBrocandZiti, usually if breaded wings show up on my plate my head starts spinin' round and it's out the window Father Karras. These weren't terribly offensive however and I think if they were served hot out of the fryolator, they would be pretty good. Mine were small to medium in size which I prefer. I thought the (hot) buffalo sauce- they have regular and hot, was very good a nice balance of heat, vinegar and butter. Very similar flavor profile (at least to me) as Buffs, but maybe a notch or two hotter which is fine by me.
The sandwiches look to lean towards creative, not typical sub shop fare and the salads sounded good too. I like the fact that they have some nice picnic tables outside, however the urban-industrial surroundings leave a little to be desired for an al fresco dining experience. I think they had pizza too which I may give a shot at some point, certainly it can't be any worse than any of Southie's current offerings.
I'll be back, it's an interesting, though perhaps out of place concept for the Newmarket Square area. Street parking not much of a problem, I think they are open 24 hrs, but it's been quite some time since that was an important option for me.
I hope it does well