All The Blues

In the short history of the El Food Brothers, we’ve had some off the cuff ideas that turn out to be amazing. But we occasionally have an idea that is less than genius. Think ‘The Beatles’ declaring themselves ‘Bigger Than Jesus’.

El Food Two: Shall we do ‘All The Blues’ ?

El Food One: Like what? We’ve done ‘The Blue Pig’. Oh wait, theres Bluu

El Food Two: Lets do it then. All The Blues!

On the day we are excited for Bluu. We’ve had trouble in the past getting chicken in the Northern Quarter, and Bluu promise ‘crates’ of their chicken wings. It sounds impressive, but it is also boarding on the ‘We Want Plates‘ territory.

A break in the frankly bullshit weather of Manchester helps with our upbeat spirits as we head to Bluu. The CCTV on the outside is a bit off putting though, maybe they get a lot of crate stealers.

Big 'Bluu' Brother
Big ‘Bluu’ Brother

We pass through the security check with no trouble, they obviously haven’t got the El Food Brothers on file yet. We quickly find a comfy little romantic booth for the two of us, and have to cosy up to avoid the now bright sunshine. We grab a lovely picture for The El Food Brothers Instagram to prove it was sunny, if only for one day.

Told you I'm a creative
Told you I’m a creative

We debate the amount of wings we want in our crate. Its decided to ‘go big or go home’ and order 15. “How about the blue cheese and bacon fries?” I say. El Food Two suggests just having the standard fries, but I argue “Its all the blues!” and so, thats how, despite neither of us liking blue cheese, we end up with our fries covered in the stuff.

Anyone want a food photographer? Get in touch. I'll do kebabs.
Anyone want a food photographer? Get in touch. I’ll do kebabs.

Wings and fries delivered, its looking like maybe we didn’t need 15. Kudos to Bluu, that when they say 15 wings, they mean the whole of the wing. I’m not sure on the exact anatomy of a chicken, but we count up our bones half way through, and we have more than 15 already.

Its also at this point that we take a refreshment break and clean our hands with the wipes provided. The only way we can open them, is violently stabbing with a fork. You see, Bluu’s wings are billed as ‘caramel & chilli’ but really, imagine wings covered in a whole bottle of sweet chilli sauce, and I mean one of those proper ones from the Chinese supermarket, and you’ve got an idea of how sticky these wings are. We both feel dirty, and are not sure who’s having who in this chicken vs man situation.

Wing crate with pints for scale

Its a shame. The wings are cooked well, and Bluu have an excellent sauce policy. They bring 6 different types of ‘hot sauce’ over for you use as you see fit. I say ‘hot sauce’ because even the ‘Bastardo’ sauce is strangely mild tasting. Hot, HOT, HOT? Bullshit we say. I’d prefer my chicken naked and then I can have it any way I want.

I’m not eating those fries mate. You have them pal

El Food two is not convinced by the ‘All The Blues’ vibe. So I end up eating the lions share of the fries. I manage to make them palatable with copious use of the sauces, and the promise of bacon in some of the bites between the stinky blue. Again, its a bold choice from Bluu to decide that the only cheese for them is blue, but then again, I guess its part of the brand.

Hot, HOT, HOT? Even your mum won't think this is hot
Hot, HOT, HOT? Even your Mum won’t think this is hot, and she thinks a Korma is hot

And so we leave Bluu with dreams of a hot shower to make us feel clean again and the hope to have full use of our hands again one day.

As I head back to work, I spot a discarded chicken bone leaning up against a bus stop. It makes me feel sad, and I think I may never want to see a chicken bone ever again. I’ll stick to a nice breast next time.

The aftermath. 2 wipes each and un-known amount of bones
The aftermath. 2 wipes each and an infinite number of chicken bones

You can’t knock Bluu for the value of the wings though. Its £15 for the wings, and £3.50 for the fries. You get 20% the food with the Northern Quarter Card as well. Although the staff never know this, so you will feel awkward asking for it.

Beers are reasonable enough at around £4 a pint. Avoid the ‘Freedom’ Organic. We had this following the ‘Blue Oyster Stout’ and it tasted like gone off Budweiser. Its also 70p more than the other beers. Organic is bullshit.

6 ‘hot sauces’ out of a crate of chicken wings.