6/10/2013 03:41:00 PM

16 Must-Try Fried Chicken Spots in 8 U.S. Cities

Fried Chix at Plan Check, LA
Is there any comfort food more soul-satisfying than fried chicken? Not only that, but fried chicken is trending right now in a major way at gourmet restaurants around the U.S. Just in time for summer, we've rounded up some of the best spots to savor the deep-fried birds in eight of our blog cities. Check out two of the top places in each town for fried chicken in the slide show, and be sure to watch this video about some of the country's best offerings.

62 comments :

  1. where are the Atlanta restaurants? We have the best fried chicken in the world!

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    1. Seriously. Why do they not include Atlanta in their major cities list??

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    2. I can't take Zagat's seriously until they pay the ATL the respect that it clearly deserves!

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    3. For sure. I even heard you can get fried chicken on top of your filet at Hal's.

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    4. I agree...where is Atlanta???

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    5. Seriously, NYC, LA, Chi?? Where is Ga, SC, ALA, TN, OKC, MS, La??? It really is southern fried chicken and the fact that one review references Nashville Style Hot Chicken, but there is no representation of the original goes to show you that Zagat doesn't really bother with "fly-over country" and most everything is concentrated on the coasts. Just an observation. I'm sure New York City does just fine with Fried Chicken (for $30 per fine china plate for 2 small pieces and a side of tiny little carrots) but if you are telling me that there isn't a woman in ATL or Little Rock with a tiny little restaurant who's chicken couldn't kick the sh&% out of NY chicken, well then , I guess I just don't know anything.

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    6. Seriously, Atlanta has some of the best fried chicken restaurants. And even outside of Atlanta there are tons of crave/drool worthy places. Just thinking about this make me start dreaming about the Smith House in Dahlonega, GA.

      Anyone else in love with that place?

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  2. No red velvet fried chicken from American Cupcake in San Fran? For shame!

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  3. Sad, you did not include one of the best there is in Kansas City - Stroud's! Awesome chicken, served family style with green beans, potatoes/gravy and yummy cinnamon rolls.

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    1. I was thinking the same thing. Stroud's is, by far, some of the best fried chicken I've EVER had. And their mashed potatoes are amazing.

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    2. Yes it does! All there food is delicious! Mashed Potatoes are the bomb WooHoo!

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  4. You have missed the best of all: The Bon Ton Minimart in Henderson, KY . Not really in Henderson, either. Just a little hole in the wall joint in the middle of nowhere. But worth the detour - you'll never forget it.

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  5. Fried chicken above the Mason-Dixon Line? Not hardly.

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    1. Exactly what I was thinking. Come on Zagat. everyone KNOWS that Fried Chicken is a southern invention. No Darn Yankee can make it right.

      Next thing you know the best Chicken Fried steak will be in New York City, not Texas.

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  6. You missed Yoder's Amish Restaurant in Sarasota, Florida.

    Absolutely DEEEEEELLLLLIIICCCIOUSSSSS Fried Chicken.....Juicy, Crunchy, Tasty and HUUUUUUGGGGEEEEE portions. They raise the chickens organically themselves too. This place is addictive. And I live in the UK.

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  7. sous vide fried chicken? ya gotta be kidding me. the best chicken is made down south anyway. Willie Mae's Scotch House, for one.

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  8. Have any of your editors heard of the south? This list is ridiculous. And I agree, Bon Ton in Henderson is great as is Stroud's in KC. both are worth the trip.

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  9. You missed Pondicherry in Houston....
    Pan Fried every Tuesday night and served family style...
    those secret Indian herbs and spices make this a meal to die for!
    Or as we say, that is G.F.C. Good F'n Chicken!

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  10. Apparently the Zagat staff never had fried chicken before. How can to write "Southern inspired", but don't provide Southern cuisine? No Yankee fried chicken can compare to Southern chicken. And when I say Southern, I mean East of the Sabine River and South of the Mason-Dixon Line.

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  11. Yeah. Right. Try again. Aside from Willie Mae's Scotch as someone else mentioned. There are two other great fried chicken restaurants in New Orleans. Crabby Jack's and The Praline Connection. Me thinks you are too hung up on foodie cool and don't know where the real stuff can be found.

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  12. I don't think Zagat understands the concept of fried chicken. Anybody can drop chicken into hot oil but that doesn't make it authentic.

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  13. Zagat, you're full of s___. This is a deep south dish, and you have nothing from any deep south states. Go back to reviewing other kinds of food!

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  14. Its not fried chicken that Zagat doesn't understand. It is that there actually are other cities in American outside of NYC, LA, DC, SF, Philly, Boston, and Austin.

    This is not just this list. Zagat hasn't released a list in a LONG time with any restaurant outside of those cities. I am fairly sure the best catfish, grits, salmon, oysters, BBQ, crawfish, and cuban food are also located exclusively in the above mention cities.

    I can't wait for the list of best Piroshkis, tacos, sushi, and mushu pork in the WHOLE WORLD to come out and find out that those dishes are also only perfected in Philadelphia and Austin, TX.

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  15. Where's Atlanta (Kenley's), Montgomery (Martin's), Mobile (Hart's), and New Orleans (Willie Mae's)??? smh

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  16. What a BS list. I guess any list will draw criticism but you have a fried chicken list and only 2/16 of the the restaurants are Southern? And both in Austin? Please. Next up: a BBQ list with no Southern restaurants except in Austin.

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  17. Hattie's Chicken Shack in Saratoga Springs, NY (yea that's "Yankee Fried Chicken") is celebrating their 75th Anniversary this year.
    Miss Hattie was ALL Southern, but is unfortunately long gone. But her award winning recipe lives on!
    Hattie's kicked Bobby Flay's butt last year on national TV in a Fried Chicken Throw Down!

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  18. You need to stick with what you know and it is not recommending restaurants that serve Must-Try fried chicken.

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  19. Yup. Federal Donuts in Philly is THAT good. One of the top Philly chefs. They failed to mention in the article that there is a 3rd outpost for them. Citizens Bank Park, home of the Phillies. Kind of hard to find in the park but look for the statue of Harry Kalas out on the third baseline, look for the escalator to the upper decks and underneath there is a Donut/Fried Chicken awning.... The hell with cheesesteaks when you can get your Federal Fried Chicken and Donut!

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  20. I am afraid you are losing some of your credibility by only including the same 6 cities in EVERY "Best of" rankings. Do you EVER travel anywhere but NYC, LA, SFO, DC or Austin ?? I am certain these are all good but, please, nowhere in the deep South ????

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  21. What about Moo Moo's Fried Chicken in Victoria, TX!?

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  22. Hidden in the Chelsea Market is some of the best fried chicken I have ever had at Hybird. Yes it's Questlove's place but that doesn't even matter, the food is that good and the fried chicken is perfection.

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  23. Glad someone around here knows about Hattie's in Saratoga. Ohh baby!

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  24. Anyone know where you can get the best fried chicken in Savannah?

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  25. Dixie Chicken and Ribs in New Orleans will put all those listed to shame! Come on down...

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  26. Went to Wayfare Tavern and I have to say it was damn good!

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  27. No restaurants in the south east? Really??

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  28. How sad and narrow minded you are concerning fried chicken; however, maybe some day you will have the courage to travel the beautiful South to Charlotte and try some high quality fried chicken at Price's Chicken Coop. I understand many at the DNC this past August in Charlotte could not get enough of the Coop! Again, another example of stereotyping about anything Southern from our fellow American citizens from other places outside of the South.

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  29. I am glad to see that other people besides me are upset with ZAGAT"S obvious inability to get in a car and go to any place but the same 8 cities. San Antino is an hour from Austin.

    Come on Zagat, get in a car and drive some where, instead of walking around NYC al the time.

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  30. Outrageous! I barely trusted Zagats before - certainly not now. Willie Mae's, Gus' in Memphis, Julep in Jackson MS, the list goes on and on . . . .

    They better watch out if they decide to do a BBQ or mac-n-cheese list!

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  31. Not so Southern Fried Chicken. Was the Zagat staff not allowed in Miss. Tenn, Alabama, GA , N/S Carolina etc...... They probably did a fried chicken search on the internet for their results.

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  32. Sweet Chick in NYC 3 piece of chicken biscuit, cole slaw $17. Wayfare Tavern Organic fried chix $24. Sbraga, no prices. Art and Soul Organic fried free range chicken for two, $49. Not my kind of fried chicken "joints".

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  33. Hold up, this must have been dated April 1st. What a joke, and an easy way to lose credibility by not having several well known much better chicken places.

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  34. A real missing link...Prince's hot chicken in Nashville, a twang to the taste buds...come on let's expand the city list. Really, fried chicken and nothing in the southeast?

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  35. Forget about ignoring ATL, they ignored the entire South! No ATL, No Nawlins, no Memphis, and the list goes on. Does Zagat not have a road atlas and travel budget?

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  36. Time to go back out there, Zagat, and try the Fried Chicken in a Bag at The Twisted Tail in Philadelphia. How did you miss it? Oh so good!

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  37. How about the Red Velvet Fried Chicken from American Cupcake in San Francisco?

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  38. Why didnt they visit Paschsl's in Atlanta,Ga. It has some of the best fried chicken. its on northdide Dr.

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  39. Best chicken place known by the providing quality.

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  41. I understand many at the DNC this past August in Charlotte could not get enough of the Coop! Again,

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