Best of New Orleans #10
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Every day during the month of August, we’re highlighting one restaurant from our recent ranking of the 31 Best Restaurants in New Orleans. Today’s restaurant, Willie Mae's, is #10 on our list.
You haven’t truly had fried chicken until you’ve had it from Willie Mae’s, a legendary restaurant located in New Orleans’ Fifth Ward since 1956. Look around the two no-frills dining rooms and you’ll see nothing but fried chicken, even though other offerings, like smothered veal, are available (and delicious). But if it’s your first time there, take a cue from the regulars and other pilgrims. The chicken, perfected by 100-year-old Willie Mae Seaton and today safeguarded by her granddaughter Kerry, is, simply put, otherworldly. Fried to order, the crust is shiny, craggy, light, not greasy, and shatteringly crisp and crunchy, coming away cleanly as you take a bite without dragging the rest of the breading with it. Underneath, the chicken is impossibly moist and juicy. We almost lost Willie Mae’s after it was destroyed during Katrina, but the community banded together to rebuild the restaurant exactly as it was before.
Here's our complete ranking:
#31. Maurepas Fine Foods
#27. The Joint
#26. Dickie Brennan's Steakhouse
#23. La Petite Grocery
#20. Parkway Bakery
#18. Dooky Chase
#15. Redfish Grill
#12. Camellia Grill
#10. Willie Mae’s Scotch House
#1. Commander’s Palace
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