It’s no secret that fried chicken is hot right now, but with the plethora of places popping up in the five boroughs, the options can be nothing short of overwhelming. This comprehensive guide of the top five fried chicken spots is designed to help you find the one you are looking for whether your main concern is atmosphere, portion, or flavor.
Blue Smoke (116 East 27th Street, Manhattan)
This spacious Texas-inspired sit-down restaurant with good service boasts an extensive menu with moderately pricy entrees yet portions and flavors are anything but dissapointing. The fried chicken is to die for as it is equally juicy, crispy, and flavorful, the mashed potatoes with gravy and biscuits are on point, and if you are in the mood for something different the ribs sampler comes highly recommended as well. For more information: http://www.bluesmoke.com/
Brooklyn Bowl (61 Wythe Avenue, Brooklyn)
The experience you get at this hipster joint makes it easily worth the short trek on the L to Williamsburg. The fried chicken, supplied by Blue Ribbon, is nice and crispy but the portion and side dishes (white bread, mashed potatoes, and collards with bacon and honey) are less than satisfying for what you pay. The funky atmosphere that overwhelms your senses while you dine at or near the bar makes up for this, however. With the bowling lanes only yards away, you can lick your fingers to the sounds of djs spinning and bowling pins crashing. An added bonus is the decent selection of beers on tap, including local favorite Brooklyn Brewery. For more information: http://www.brooklynbowl.com/
Hill Country (25th Street and Broadway, Manhattan)
This brand new 50s style casual eatery gets down to plastic cutlery with its easy-to-order setup. Order at the counter and choose chicken by the piece (with or without skin) or large chicken tenders and a variety of sides. including the decent cheesy fried mash potatoes. Beer is not yet available on premise but there are a plethora of pies, two of which per day can be transformed into a milkshake in case you are still lacking calories after your main course. Seating is available on the main level or in the basement, which also includes various 90s games such as Life and Light Bright. For more information: http://www.hillcountryny.com/
Pies N Thighs (166 South 4th Street @ Driggs, Brooklyn)
This small charming Williamsburg restaurant is filled to capacity with picnic tables that fill up easily – and for good reason. Portions are generous for your money, service is fast, and sides are unique, especially the spicy black eyed peas. For $11 you get a fried chicken box which includes a large wing and breast, a biscuit, and a side for only $11. The $5 chicken biscuit is delicious and will make you equally full. Pies are available for your dessert and brunch, including chicken and waffles, is also offered. For more information: http://piesnthighs.com/
Redhead (349 East 13th Street, Manhattan)
The Lower Easts Side boasts the juiciest, most flavorful fried chicken this list has to offer in the dimly lit bar/restaurant. The menu is on the pricier side but the meal is worth every penny, and the $18 buttermilk fried chicken entree comes with a corn muffin and delicious spinach and strawberry salad with almonds. Recommended sides are the antebellum grits or the watermelon, sea salt, and lime. Because this is not the largest place and it is becoming rather well-know, a word to the wise: make reservations, especially on weekends! For more information: http://www.theredheadnyc.com/
Wait a second. You didn’t even go to Harlem to get fried chicken? This list has no credibility.