I’ve been drooling over Stokey Bears’ new Buffalo Blue chicken burger for weeks on Instagram. And finally, I couldn’t take it any longer. I had to have it. I talk a likeminded buddy into tagging along (all it takes is a well chosen Stokey Bears Instagram post) and off we go.
We breeze into Mother Kelly’s first, for pre-burger beers, cheese fumes and bearded craft banter. There’s a friendly Howling Hops promo dude with an almighty beard handing out free samples when we arrive, so, obligingly, we knock back a few mini West Coast Special IPAs, Ruby Reds and Double Chocolate Coffee Toffee Vanilla Milk Porters (wow). Before coughing up for some Beavertown Applelation Bramley Apple Saisons and a round of Verdant Brewing Roy, I Want A Hi-Lux Pale Ales.
Feeling on top of the world, we exit Mother Kelly’s, turn left into Stoke Newington Church Street and tractor beam our way to Stokey Bears. Full steam ahead.
I do like the Stokey Bears vibe. Casual, California Games chic with added Simpsons and Ren and Stimpy. The smell’s unmistakeable. A combination of grilled beef patties and sweet, tangy bacon jam. But I can’t get distracted. Tonight’s mission is clear. I stick to my guns and order the Buffalo Blue.
When the burger arrives it’s as pretty as its picture. No Catfish here; blue cheese slaw, spring onion, fried chicken thighs, buffalo and blue cheese sauce, AND pickles. The chicken reminds me of Bird Restaurants’, as its impossibly light and crispy exterior gives way to a soft, tender, juicy chicken thigh centre. The blue cheese slaw’s incredible. And the buffalo and blue cheese sauce coat the walls of my ecstasy riddled mouth as I chew.
It’s decadent, yet light and fresh at the same time. Crunchy. Succulent. Rich. And delicious. Like perfect New York buffalo wings with an overload of blue cheese and slaw… in a bun! I consider ordering another one, a takeaway encore, but “chicken” out at the last minute.