Who Makes the South's Best Fried Chicken?

Notable Southern chefs weigh in on who they think makes the best fried chicken in the South

Loaded question? Maybe, but the South's notable chefs have opinions on where to find its best fried chicken.
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Loaded question? Maybe, but the South's notable chefs have opinions on where to find its best fried chicken.

Crispy and juicy, golden and delicious, floured or battered, pan-, deep-, or pressure-fried — however you believe it should be cooked, fried chicken is a matter close to the Southern heart. Asking someone to name the region's best version could be as dangerous and sensitive as announcing during Sunday supper that Momma's is better than Granny's.

Who Makes the South's Best Fried Chicken?

"These are loaded questions," said chef David Guas of Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington, Va.

Sure, but that didn't stop some great chefs from weighing in with their opinions. And with the second annual Atlanta Food & Wine Festival around the corner, it's something that you might imagine you'd hear being debated, or at least asked, by some of the festival's out-of-town visitors looking for the best renditions.

To go one better, how about getting chefs to divulge what they believe to be the secrets to making the best fried chicken in the world? Buttermilk? Lard? Salting the buttermilk? Soaking the chicken overnight? Find out the picks and recipe secrets for the South's best fried chicken from chefs David Guas, Shaun Doty, Linton Hopkins, Anthony Lamas, Norman Van Aken, Kelly English, Sean Brock, Kristen Hard, and Ford Fry.

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2 Comments

Fresser's picture

I found your fried chicken article interesting. While I agree with the recommendation of Gus' Fried chicken in Memphis, I find Arnolds in Nashville to be quite pedestrian. Also, several of the picks gave a name but no address. The chef who was correct was the one who said, "some black lady we've never heard of."

Fresser's picture

I found your fried chicken article interesting. While I agree with the recommendation of Gus' Fried chicken in Memphis, I find Arnolds in Nashville to be quite pedestrian. Also, several of the picks gave a name but no address. The chef who was correct was the one who said, "some black lady we've never heard of."

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