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Western Chicken - Still Going in Hollywood

lil mikey Oct 20, 2012 10:08 AM

Against all odds, occupying the worst location in Hollywood, this place is still open after two years. I rarely see other customers there, but they're still open and there are always several people in the kitchen overseeing the actual cooking.

It's obviously a family operation, as there are often young kids hanging around doing homework or playing on the computer.

But the food is consistently well made and it's my go-to place for fast food Middle Eastern fare in the area (Marouch is the place for a sit down meal). Zankou and Al Wazir have been eliminated for a variety of reasons. And Chicken Dijon tastes too formulaic.

Last night I had the arayes plate at Western Chicken, which comes with hummus and turnip pickles. It was fresh tasting, nicely seasoned, and plenty of food. I saved some for this morning.

But one thing I've noticed, not just here, but also especially at Al Wazir: What happened to the pricing? It wasn't long ago that you could go into a Middle Eastern fast food place and have a meal for $5. Now you can't get out of there for less than $10. The last time I was at Al Wazir, it was $24. Somehow they got the notion that they could charge $5 for a quarter pound of hummus or babaganoush or tabouli. Hello.... this is chopped parsley. For $5? Well, I guess people must be paying it or they would change the pricing. But that's why I don't go to these places as often anymore.

Whew, I'm glad I got that off my mind. Anyway, Western Chicken is going strong, and more power to them.

Western Chicken
1546 N. Western Ave. (between Hollywood and Sunset)
Hollywood
(323) 308-1900

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    ScaryKlown RE: lil mikey Jan 29, 2013 02:03 PM

    Late to your celebration of all things Western Chicken, but glad to chime in. I found them via the Eat24 delivery website/app and WC is at the top of my go-to ordering places, along with King of New York pizza. I usually get the chicken kebab plate, which comes with 2 white meat kebabs, hummus, pita, rice, and salad. Sometimes I'll order 3-4 falafel as an app or add a lamb kebab if I am really hungry. The garlic sauce is the bomb (as the kids no longer say) and I can't give enough mad props (ditto) to Western Chicken - especially with the delivery option.

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      ns1 RE: lil mikey Jan 29, 2013 02:14 PM

      re: tabouli

      While it is just parsley, I found tabouli to be a complete PITA to make.

      Zankou remains dirt cheap.
      Joe's Falafel in Studio City is also pretty cheap

      Skaf's has also reached the point of no return for me due to their prices.

      Hyatt's Kitchen in NoHo is somewhere in the middle.

      4 Replies
      1. re: ns1
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        linus RE: ns1 Jan 29, 2013 04:00 PM

        zankou? dirt cheap?

        o.k., the chicken plates are still reasonable, maybe(they sure seem to have shrunk the size of their chickens), but last time i was in there, the tarnat and shawarma plates were, like, 12 or 13 bucks.
        that seems steep to me.

        while trying to check the prices to make sure i wasn't hallucinating, i notice zankou doesn't put the prices anywhere on their website.

        just had joe's falafel (in a laffa wrap) for the first time. blows anything on zankou's menu out of the water.
        i also wouldn't call that exactly cheap.

        1. re: linus
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          ns1 RE: linus Jan 29, 2013 04:15 PM

          8 bucks for a giant laffa warp @ Joe's that me and the GF split

          @ Zankou full chicken for 10 bucks! Or wraps for $6.

          Stop getting plates or fancy stuff =P

          1. re: ns1
            l
            linus RE: ns1 Jan 29, 2013 09:48 PM

            seems like joes laffa was over 10 with a drink, and it was nicely sized, but hardly giant.
            zankous wraps are small. the chickens are getting smaller and not as good as they used to be. and whole chickens are fancier than plates of chopped up mystery meat. nyaah.

          2. re: linus
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            silverlakebodhisattva RE: linus Jan 30, 2013 06:42 PM

            I'm wondering if Zankou is now varying pricing by location, even within the two divided parts of the original company, and that's why pricing is not on the websites. Would make sense; the original Hollywood location has GOT to be paying less rent than, say, the Burbank location, and is certainly spending less on their decor, but I suspect that they're moving the same volume.

            I've noted the shrinkage of their birds over the last two decades, but the chicky is still a pretty good deal. The sides, not so much any more.

        2. TonyC RE: lil mikey Jan 29, 2013 04:35 PM

          Arax falafel sandwich: $5, beef shawarma $6.50

          That's "Middle Eastern", right? Ditto to Attari?

          ME food is still mostly ridiculously cheap overall, I mean, you can get a whole roasted chicken for $10ish... kebabs plate for $10ish. One plate of tiradito at Picca is how much? Or the pig ears at Animal? Is ethnic food (even Non-Chinese) not worth paying for?

          1. katydid13 RE: lil mikey Jan 29, 2013 06:59 PM

            Agree with ns1 about tabbouleh being a real pain to make. I only attempted it once, and the food processor turned the parsley into pulverized goo, so chopping by hand was a necessity. Also requires finely diced scallions & tomato & fresh lemon juice. I would gladly pay ANYONE to do all that for me. That said, I am a little mystified that I can't seem to get out of Marouch w/o spending $30 for lunch, and that's for an entree & a tabbouleh. I love the place and would go there more often if it were cheaper. Thanks for the tip about Western Chicken. I will check it out!

            1 Reply
            1. re: katydid13
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              ScaryKlown RE: katydid13 Jan 29, 2013 10:15 PM

              The chicken kabob plate I mentioned is $8.99 and plenty of food for one person, with 2 white meat skewers, rice, salad, amazing hummus, and pita bread. I haven't had the tabbouleh at WC but I've had the baba gannouj and it's as good as the hummus. And they're open 11am-12midnight!

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