Is Beer Butt Chicken worth it, or should you crack a can of beer instead?

I once thought “beer butt chicken” was a typo for “beer battered chicken”.  After finding out the truth, I was equally repulsed and intrigued, but I knew I had to try it for myself.

Beer butt chicken - lights camera adventure

Beer butt chicken is a whole chicken that is roast with a can of beer stuffed in the cavity. Ironically, buns are not included. (But I think they should throw in some dinner rolls just for the booty jokes!)

I got my beer butt chicken for $32 at the Southwest Tavern, a small restaurant bar tucked away in the west of Singapore. (See bottom of post for directions)

So should you have beer butt chicken or are you better off cracking a can of beer?

You’re better off drinking a can of beer. The meat itself doesn’t taste like beer, it only has a mild fragrance of it.

Don’t get me wrong though, I thought the chicken tasted pretty awesome. You see, the beer evaporates and seeps into the cavity of the chicken, making the flesh incredibly juicy while leaving the skin crispy.

Just look at the juice that’s seeping out of this cut.

Beer butt chicken - lights camera adventureThat being said, the chef did leave us a bowl of the remaining beer + juice of the chicken that dripped into the can while roasting.

It sounds incredibly disgusting, and it really is. It doesn’t help that I don’t like drinking beer.

I don’t know, maybe true beer lovers might enjoy dipping into the beer mixture.

We also ordered a side of Bloomin’ Onion ($14) to whet our appetites as we waited for the chicken. It was really filling and it was just nice for four people.

Beer butt chicken - lights camera adventure

The onion pieces were crispy and well spiced, though they were a little bit on the oily side. The ranch sauce was a perfect accompaniment but I wish it was a little thicker in consistency. That would have made it a lot better in my opinion.

When our chicken finally arrived, it came skewered and standing upright – or should I say it came sitting on the beer can?

Beer butt chicken - lights camera adventure

We were actually afraid of making a mess by attempting to carve the chicken ourselves so we asked the chef to do it for us.

Beer butt chicken - lights camera adventure

The chef chopped it into more manageable portions, allowing us to enjoy the tender chicken. Every part of the chicken was juicy, even the breast.

In particular, I enjoyed how parts of the skin were dry like parchment, and crackled as I bit into it. The combination of juicy flesh and crispy skin utterly won me over.

The chicken also came with sides of coleslaw and rice. The coleslaw sauce didn’t taste too great, but the rice was good and went well with the chicken.


Overall, I would rate this experience 3.8/5 stars. I definitely prefer beer butt chicken over regular roasted chicken, and think it’s worth trying. However, the meal would have been perfect if only the side dishes were just as tasty as the main. Maybe you could try requesting a side of fries instead of coleslaw if you choose to visit.

Getting to Southwest Tavern

Address: 8 Boon Lay Way, Singapore 609964
Closest MRT Stations: Jurong East and Clementi
Contact: 6515 4303
Opening hours: 11AM – 12AM daily
Website | Menu

Southwest Tavern, Tradehub 21