Hot chicken investigated

Categories:chicken
Tags:,

Big Shake’s Cry Baby Hot Chicken

I have just finished an exhaustive investigation into Nashville Hot Chicken.

That’s a lie. I will never end my investigation into this Nashville original. But I’ve eaten enough of it at different places to feel as though I have a handle on the merits of each version. I won’t rank them but I will impart my vast knowledge in the hopes that if you’re a local you’ll feel free to agree or disagree or if you’re a guest in our town you’ll have a good number of options to choose from. Here we go.

Prince’s: This is where it all began when a philandering man got his comeuppance with fried chicken drenched in cayenne pepper. It was meant as punishment but it delighted the wag and started a movement. For my money, it’s too hot. I’ve ventured into “medium” territory and it blew the top of my head off. I don’t want to be punished by my food.

Bolton’s: A+ on several counts. First, both locations are dives. If there are bars on the windows and cracks in the plastic cushioned seats it’s a sign of good food and Bolton’s delivers. Their mild is about as hot as I go and it’s plenty hot. Bonus points for the exceptional baked beans that are worth a visit on their own.

Five Daughter’s Bakery: What? Famous for their 100-layer doughnuts, Five Daughter’s also serves a righteous hot chicken sandwich with homemade chow chow on a baked-fresh croissant. Perhaps not coloring in the lines but the heat level is just right (you don’t get to pick – just go with it) and one of their King Kong doughnuts (maple glazed, cream filled and bacon topped) provides that perfect balance between spice and sweet.

Hattie B’s/Bishop’s: Again, I go with the mild but King Daddy and I entertained a friend the other day who went for the hot and cleaned his chicken down to the bone. Pro tip: Hattie B’s has several locations in Nashville and there’s always — ALWAYS — a long line to get in. But if you venture a few miles south to Cool Springs you can walk right up to the meat and three line at Bishop’s and order Hattie B’s hot chicken. Both places are owned by the same family. Bonus points for hot catfish on Fridays.

Big Shake’s: This is a relative newcomer to the hot chicken scene but they can compete. The chicken is exceptionally moist with a shatteringly crisp crust. I go for the “cry baby” level of heat. And their greens and white beans are exceptional. And not that I’m in a hurry, but Big Shake’s delivers the goods faster than any other hot chicken place in town.

Save

Save

Leave a Reply

Your message*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Name*
Email*
Url

What is 3 + 8 ?
Please leave these two fields as-is:
IMPORTANT! To be able to proceed, you need to solve the following simple math (so we know that you are a human) :-)