Rita's Bar & Dining at Birthdays

Words by Ian Cameron

Address: 33-35 Stoke Newington Road, London, N16 8BJ, United Kingdom
Style: Restaurant bar
Food: Set menu


Type: Food and drink eatery

Rita's at Birthdays is moving in April 2013, but promises to pop-up again in the vicinity so we're including it here and will update when it moves. Rita's started life when Birthdays, a large, concrete bunker-style live music site, wanted to do food. The concept is relaxed, diner-style focusing on southern fried chicken - done alarmingly well and in a way that makes Colonel Sanders a pale imitation of this Deep South staple (as if it wasn't already). Some dishes are amusingly served in a brown paper bag.

The folk at Rita's include former bar staff from Hawksmoor and the venue boasts a short cocktail list (£6.50). Drinks are served rustic style in simple tumblers, without pretence, but come nicely boozy - whether long (Dark & Stormy) or short (Margarita). That's the key with this place - relaxed service and style belies quality products. Cocktail, mac 'n' cheese, and chicken in a paper bag? Bring it on.