June 19, 2012


Location: 2019 11th St NW (U St Metro)
Cost: $10
Chix on Urbanspoon

It's been a long orientation week, but I feel good!  My co-interns are awesome, the hospital is great...it looks like I'm gonna have a lotta fun (in between all the long hours and never-ending workload) over the next three years.  To celebrate the end of our first week together, Brian, Erin, Lauren, Nate, Roy, Zubin, and I headed out to Chix to grab some dinner on our one day off.

Chix is an interesting concept - sustainable fast food that's not centered around salads.  They say they compost 90% of their waste and use 100% wind energy, which is really cool and all, but if the food's not worth the price of admission, it just becomes a clever marketing ploy.  So let's get down to what really matters!

As you might expect (or maybe not, considering that Brian's fiancé gave him a weird look when he told her "we're going to Chix for dinner"), chicken is the major player here.  Chix roasts chickens marinated in three of their special blends of spices: Chix (a "secret blend of slightly sweet spices"), Colombian (coffee & coconut milk), and Peruvian ("peppery peruvian spices").  Like most latin chicken joints, you get your choice of salsa to go with your chicken.  Unlike most latin chicken joints, however, you have the option of a caribbean curry mustard in addition to two different types of salsa.  The sides (you get 2 with any chicken order) are mostly latin american staples such as black beans & rice, but there are some unique offerings like "noodles & cheese," as you can see.

I'd been craving Peruvian chicken for a while, so I went with a 1/4 of that coupled with black beans & rice and noodles & cheese.  First things first, this chicken is well-seasoned.  Peppery, with a hint of lime, tastefully salty but not overwhelmingly so...Chix knows their seasonings.  The extra bit of spice was well-received too, and gave the chicken a nice kick.  Cutting into the chicken, I was a little disappointed to find that the white meat was a little on the dry side.  Not overly so, and it definitely gave me an excuse to use the curry mustard (awesome, by the way, and a definite recommend unless you're a big salsa fan), but it would have been nice if they covered the white meat while roasting the dark and let the whole chicken cook more evenly.

The sides were nothing to write home about, really.  I was able to try the sweet potatoes too (thanks, Nate), and they were the best-tasting of the three I did get a chance to try.  They're baked, so fans of sweet potato fries will like em; other than that, they don't have much else going on.  No dipping sauce, no sprinkled salt...seemed like kind of an afterthought, which is understandable because the chicken definitely is the star of the show.  Likewise, the black beans & rice reminded me of...well, black beans & rice served a million times before.  The noodles and cheese were interesting, at least; baked thin spaghetti with cheese on top, held together with a cream-based sauce.  Still, I would have preferred classic mac & cheese as a side.

Lauren ordered up a chix chop bowl, the Chix version of a Chipotle/Qdoba burrito bowl.  The sweet potatoes were definitely a nice touch, and if that's what you're craving it's definitely good.  Still, I prefer seeing the actual piece of chicken and cutting the meat myself...I guess the work put into getting that chicken into my mouth makes it taste that much better.

For appealing to my inner hippie, and satisfying my Peruvian roast chicken fix, Chix earns 3.5 Cherries.