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Feb 9, 2012 03:47 PM

Willing to make time to try NYC's BEST Southern Fried Chicken - But Where??!!

Hello chow friends!

Its 'Yu' again!

I love crispy, crunchy, salty and savory food and I LOVE Southern Style Fried Chicken. Unfortunately, great tasting fried chicken is a very rare commodity here in Toronto. As such, for my upcoming short trip to NYC, I have fine-tuned my itinerary to allow me to go and find me some!

I have done a little research and come up with the following list:

- Amy Ruth's
- Birdies
- Chat 'n' Chow
- Dirty Bird to go
- Margie's Red Rose
- The Pink Tea Cup
- Rack & Soul
- The Shark Bar Restaurant

Of the above, with my limited time, which one shall I pick to satisfy my craving and provide me with a lasting impression?! Did I miss any?!

BTW, how safe is it for one to head up to Harlem and beyond, these days??!!

Thanks again!!

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  1. First, Harlem's fine.

    Second, Charles' Country Pan-Fried Chicken. Amy Ruth's is pretty good, too, especially if you want waffles with your chicken - the "Al Sharpton" is a heckuva meal.

    Third, if you're willing venture to Brooklyn, Henry's End in Brooklyn Heights makes one of the best plates of fried chicken in the city. They're known for other things - wild game, mainly - but their FC is unjustly overlooked.

    Charles' Country Pan-Fried Chicken
    2837 8th Ave, New York, NY 10039

    Amy Ruth's
    113 W 116th St, New York, NY 10026

    1. We loved the fried chicken at The Redhead!

      The Redhead
      349 E 13th St, New York, NY 10003

      1. Our favorite these days is Pies 'n' Thighs in Williamsburg, very convenient to Manhattan.

        I love Amy Ruth's, too, but more for their fried chicken and waffles! Don't ignore the waffles!

        Amy Ruth's
        113 W 116th St, New York, NY 10026

        1 Reply
        1. re: kathryn

          I'm glad no one said Bubby's, that chicken is so overrated . I like the chicken Southern fried Chicken at Georgia's BBQ on LES. The ribs are great too

          Georgia's Eastside BBQ
          192 Orchard St, New York, NY 10002

        2. We went to The Dutch for lunch specifically to have the fried chicken. It did not disappoint.

          Photo of The Dutch's Fried Chicken:

          The Dutch
          131 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012

          21 Replies
          1. re: RGR

            I have to say, I found The Dutch's fried chicken - while it had excellent crunch:moist ratio - a little bland and underseasoned. I like everything else I've had there, but the FC left me underwhelmed.

            Also, forgot to mention: Peels' fried chicken is great, though it's not classic Southern-style a la Charles' or Amy Ruth's. But their "build-a-biscuit" with fried chicken, scrambled eggs, and red-eye gravy has become a favorite brunch of mine.

            Amy Ruth's
            113 W 116th St, New York, NY 10026

            325 Bowery, New York, NY 10003

            The Dutch
            131 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012

            1. re: sgordon

              I felt the same way about the fried chicken at The Dutch in Miami. I'm assuming that they used the same recipe as The Dutch in Soho, but maybe I'm wrong.

              I liked the fried chicken at Blue Ribbon Brasserie though I can't claim that it's the best since I haven't been to most of the places mentioned in this thread.

              Underwhelmed with Red Rooster, but others seem to like it.

              Blue Ribbon Brasserie
              97 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012

              Red Rooster
              310 Lenox Ave, New York, NY 10027

              1. re: fm1963

                I agree with you FM on the Dutch in Miami btw. The fried chicken is fantastic. It has been way too long since I have visited charles but still consider it a favorite.

                1. re: fm1963

                  I thought I was the ONLY one who was underwhelmed by the fried chicken at Red Rooster. In fact, I was underwhelmed with all of the food. The cocktails were tasty though.

                  Red Rooster
                  310 Lenox Ave, New York, NY 10027

                  1. re: UWSHomeCook

                    Disappointed to hear that you were underwhelmed at Red Rooster. Well that saves me having to make a trip out of Manhattan.

                    1. re: Ottojr

                      Perhaps this is a post from outside NYC. Many people would be offended to see Harlem described as "out of Manhattan".

                      1. re: GaryUES

                        And it's inaccurate. Not only is Harlem part of Manhattan, but from the 2/3 right outside Red Rooster you can be just about anywhere downtown in like 15 minutes.

                2. re: sgordon

                  Interesting how so many fried chicken places manage to create excellent crunch/moist ratio but fell short on the 'seasoning' side!! Unfortunately, all Toronto fried chicken places are like that??! Sometimes, I even find 'freshly made' KFC tasted better!! I hope the best of NYC taste better?!

                  1. re: Charles Yu

                    I know it's considered non-Chowhoundish to like a chain chicken, but I really like Popeye's.


                    1. re: RGR

                      That we have in Toronto!. Tasted kind of bland to me though!
                      Actually, I prefer the 'old style' KFC freshly out of the cooker. Unfortunately, nowadays, with 'healthier' oil being used, the taste is no longer the same!

                      1. re: RGR

                        I think any restaurant is Chowhoundish. We all have to eat, sometimes we are in a rush , sometimes chains are convenient. Popeyes happens to have good fried chicken, better than KFC and Roy Rogers. Now , if we start talking about White Castle chicken rings, i may start getting nauseous ,,haha,,

                        1. re: RGR

                          I fully expect to see your terrible confession emblazoned on the cover of the next "National Enquirer" (with salacious pictures attached, of course! ;)

                          1. re: Phil Ogelos


                            LOL! The last time we ate at Popeye's, I did consider taking photos to post on my Flick but resisted the urge. But next time.... ;)


                            Haven't had KFC in ages, but I agree that Popeye's is better. Never tried Roy Rogers.

                            Btw, we've tried the fried chicken at Hll Country Chicken, and I didn't like it.


                            1. re: RGR

                              i always enjoy popeye's or used to since there is none around where i currently live in upstate ny

                          2. re: RGR

                            I completely agree. I haven't tried it everywhere, but I much prefer Popeye's to a lot of non-chain fried chicken, such as The Dutch and Hill Country Chicken.

                            1. re: RGR

                              My sister considers Popeye's the best fried chicken anywhere (of course it helps that their Lexington Ave. location is on her way home from work ;-)).

                            2. re: Charles Yu

                              For me, the issue is the chicken being dry by the time you get to the center of a white meat piece. The Dutch & Pies 'n' Thighs definitely do not suffer from this issue.

                            3. re: sgordon

                              Friend and I had a hankering for fried chicken and I combed these boards looking for recommendations. I’ve had fried chicken at Charles’s in Harlem (not great when I was there, but I hear it can vary), Maroon’s (late, lamented), Henry’s End (in Brooklyn; always satisfying, but a little heavy on the nutmeg), Hill Country (not worth passing up the meat for), Blue Ribbon (too long ago to remember, but never went back for it), both Bon Chon (now Mad for Chicken) and KyoChon (the first, several times), and Popeye’s (right up there among my favorites). Haven’t been to either Red Rooster or The Dutch, but decided to try Peel’s.

                              The chicken, three pieces, was very crisp and greaseless with a dark brown crust in which I think I detected a hint of cayenne. The meat of the breast was almost unbelievably juicy and had real flavor; you could tell it had been brined, I’m guessing in buttermilk. The chicken was served with an excellent biscuit and a small container of honey. I thought it among the best fried chicken I’ve ever had.

                              My friend and I shared an appetizer of fried green tomatoes. The tomatoes were sliced so thin, it was almost like eating crispy crust with just a hint of filling. These were borderline addictive. They were served with a superfluous remoulade and some lemon wedges. The spritz of lemon was more than sufficient.

                              This is not a regular indulgence so it may be a while before I have a chance to compare it with some of the other restaurants that have received good reviews here. But I’ll tell you, when that hankering returns, it’s going to be hard not to go back to Peel’s.

                              1. re: JoanN

                                Great post. Thanks for the update. I have a friend leaving New York, and she's been looking for great fried chicken, so I will send her there.

                            4. Red Rooster and Georgia's East Side BBQ are tasty. If you have time, try to squeeze in some Korean fried chicken too.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: GoodGravy

                                i was browsing the CH posts to help me decide what to eat tonite.Something easy , tasty and with a counter or bar. I just decided. Georgia's for what I think is the best ribs and chicken.