Located in central Northern Quarter, Yard & Coop presents an authentic taste of the Deep South. After visiting Tennessee and New Orleans owner Carl Morris and his team acquired an understanding of how buttermilk fried chicken is traditionally cooked in America and installed that knowledge within their food, for all to taste.
Upon entering the restaurant the colour scheme of red, yellow and orange immediately encompasses a sense of warmth and joy, as the turquoise tables and chairs contrasts with ease to form a vivid spectacle. Yard & Coop also possesses an engagingly fun and light-hearted aura, which was bestowed on us through its rich contemporary interior.
Ironically and comically, a large illustrious fox’s heads is painted over one wall and the restaurant uses dainty gold fox’s heads as door handles. The amusing and quirky interior is consistent throughout the large premises, and in one-corner lies a projection of an animated chicken with the caption “Eat me! Love from skinny”.
All of the restaurant’s buttermilk chicken is farm assured, red tractor and sourced from the UK, while all thighs, breasts and wings have been brined for 24 hours. The restaurant also has the vision of sourcing their meat from free-range chickens upon expansion. The care in which the restaurant has taken in preparing and sourcing the chicken is reflected within its inherent succulence.
Yard & Coop are devoted to presenting their fried chicken in new and exciting ways. They offer chicken breast, boneless thigh and not-chicken-nuggets (crumb-coated halloumi) with chips or coop salad at the reasonable price of £9. The restaurant also offers a range of seven sauces to accompany any of these options, all of which are made from scratch, from bourbon BBQ to jerkalicious.
A few of the homemade sauces are uniquely conveyed and as a result they present real intrigue. The Bees Knees, for example, invigorates the taste buds with its initial punch of cayenne pepper followed by the aftertaste of the sweet honey and tangy lime.
Yard & Coop provides its diners with the opportunity to give their chicken an Eastern influence, with the creation of their beautiful Seoul sauce. The sweet Seoul sauce, which is comprised of Soy sauce, coriander, tomato and honey, was an unusual but delightful accompaniment for the chicken, chips and sweet potato chips.
The restaurant’s Parma bird burger is an option listed on the menu under large plates. Derived from one of the chef’s love of Italian flavours the Parma incorporates several striking features. Its meaty filling is endorsed in the Italian style tomato and basil Mamma Mia sauce, as a layer of minty rocket is absorbed within the brioche bun, to add a touch of mouth-watering sourness.
For anyone feeling extremely peckish, Yard & Coop is the place to visit with its generous portions and selection of large plates. The restaurant’s ‘massive cock’ burger really is a tasteful challenge, with its full buttermilk fried chicken breast, battered chorizo, salty battered jalapenos, lettuce, tomato and sriracha sauce all contained in a double stacked brioche bun.
Owner, Carl Morris told TNT, “Yard & Coop is a place which has a love for booze and chicken. It’s Manchester’s new home of buttermilk fried chicken”.
TNT Food & Drink Billy Rooney