Monga Fried Chicken (Taiwanese) – Chinatown LondonHALAL STATUS Fully Halal food menu • Alcohol sold
Monga is an international franchise that specialises in Far Eastern TFC (no, not Thai, but Taiwanese Fried Chicken).
With a strong following in Taiwan and with branches opened in Canada and America not too long ago, Monga made its UK debut earlier this year in iconic Chinatown London.
The good news is that this fast food restaurant, located on Macclesfield Street opposite Halal-friendly Malaysian Rasa Sayang (see our review here), offers a food menu that’s entirely Halal (NB – alcohol is sold on site).
The place itself offers seating for around 30 upstairs, with plenty of traditional touches that include a mixture of high and low wooden tables and seats, as well as limited cushioned seating.
Since freshness is a key part of Monga’s USP, with chicken orders being “marinated with honey, dipped in batter” and fried-to-order, takeaways operate via an automated ticketing system which promptly alerts waiting diners, albeit in Mandarin, when orders are ready for collection.
In fact, this emphasis on freshness means that because they only prepare a certain volume per day, they are known to run out of certain food items by the end of the evening.
Another interesting tidbit is that the ones behind popular bubble and milk tea franchise Chatime – boasting a branch around the corner in Chinatown in addition to 21 others across the UK, as well as over 1000 around the world – are also behind said teas available at Monga.
Starting with the trio of inhouse Brown Sugar Bubble Lattes, then the most satisfying of the bunch was easily the smooth and creamy textured Fire Dragon, with the sweetness of the caramel coming through gently.
And while the Black Dragon’s mellow sweetness was nicely balanced by the light coffee flavour of the oolong Chinese tea that lingered in the background, the one-dimensional, earthy-flavoured Green Dragon with matcha is one of those Marmite-like beverages, which we found to be underwhelming.
We also ordered a Grapefruit Green Tea – the only flavour currently available from the Fruit Tea section. This was, as you can guess, a zesty affair, with the grapefruit coming through strongly enough without being overpowering.
Alongside a choice of one Thick Cut Chicken Fillet, the Combo meal also comes with one Signature Chips or Rice, one Salad with Japanese style dressing, and one Drink (soft drink or add £3 extra for Brown Sugar Bubble Latte).
And because this is a chicken fillet, you’ll find that one side is bony with less meat, whilst the other is the more meatier business-side of things.RECOMMENDED
The first thing that will strike you about this Taiker, other than its impressive size, is its exterior – glisteningly golden, which succeeds in making this an extremely enticing grab-and-eat item.
The flavour profile is quite something too, with the distinct aroma and sweetness of the teriyaki coming through gently alongside the salty hint of the green seaweed seasoning sprinkled over the top.
This is nothing close to your ordinary battered chicken available here, there and thither; making Monga worth a visit for this alone.
And a short word on their Signature Chips, whose crazy-light crispiness made them such an addictive munch. In fact, and don’t ask how they achieved this, even after revisiting this portion 15 minutes later, they still managed to somehow retain that characteristic crispiness. Unreal!RECOMMENDED
The contrast between the above and this Signature Chee-Z version couldn’t be more stark. Whilst the Taiker boasted a crispy batter, this was delicately crunchy, and based in a mildly hot tomato sauce, before being covered in deliciously grilled and gooey mozzerella cheese topping, with a light sprinkling of that seaweed powder.
If you’re looking for some fragrant crunch, then this is as different as you’re ever likely to get when it comes to fried chicken!
This Fiery Chicken Fillet was, indeed, precisely that courtesy of plenty of hot sauce based across the top, with the customery addition of seaweed seasoning.
Essentially, this version is the same as the above, with exactly the same coating, but minus the cheese and mild tomato sauce.
As for the chicken, then for a third time in a row, it was absolutely bang on the money!
Moving past the obvious, i.e. Monga have some special secret to executing their chicken fillets to perfection, The King is basically as good as you’re going to get when it comes to battered fried chicken.
To be honest, however, given that this is the same price as the Taiker above, we’d go with that rather than this, only because that’s far more satisfying and novel.
Effectively, these nuggets are miniaturised versions of the above fillets, and just as soft and succulent.
So if you’re looking for something small, then go for these bite-sized mouthfuls, since they’re quite superb!RECOMMENDED
Similarly, these Taiwanese Style Popcorn Chicken have the same coating as the Chee-Z Signature, making them ultra crispy and dangerously addictive.
The veggies are a good alternative choice to the meat. Granted they are quite oily; but the batter is light, with a distinct sweet-earthy aroma to it which we found pleasing.
The green beans had a salty edge, making them a good substitute perhaps to the standard fries (although as mentioned before, those fries are to die for, if you’d forgive the expression!)
- YES/ NO
- CHILD SEATING
- UBER EATS
Essentially, they've taken a chicken fillet, found a secret to cooking them absolutely bang on each and every time, battered them with some uniquely-flavoured coatings and ingredients, and made Monga a place to experience.
And if you do, don't forget to grab one of their Brown Sugar Bubble Lattes, because the same people behind these are also behind popular bubble and milk tea franchise Chatime, which boasts a branch around the corner in Chinatown, 21 others across the UK, and over 1000 around the world!
With huge emphasis on freshness, Monga uphold a policy of preparing a certain portion of items per day, which meant that by the end of the evening, they were out of rice and the selection of desserts they do. So if you do try them, don't forget to let us know in the comments below.
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