There is nothing quite like that first bite into a perfectly cooked piece of fried chicken. That oh-so-satisfying crunchy exterior, the juicy meat, the flavourful seasonings – wash it down with a cool fruity drink and you have the ultimate summer treat.
I know I’m not the only one with a special place in their heart for a three-piece combo. In fact, today is National Fried Chicken Day – that’s right, a whole 24 hours dedicated to the stuff. If you’re looking to celebrate this wonderful occasion, you’re in luck. There are plenty of TO restos that make fried chicken meals that will make your mouth water.
Here’s a quick roundup of 10 of the best places in Toronto for fried chicken.
Don’t let the name fool you. This Dundas and King West mainstay is known for its fried chicken sandwiches almost as much as their slow-cooked porchetta. Plus, they’re always mixing it up with a variety of specials, from Nashville-style, to Buffalo, and even the occasional fried chicken BLT.
This tiny College St. takeout joint serves up some surprisingly big sandwiches with even bigger flavours. You can’t go wrong with their Classic which features coleslaw, pickles, smoky chilli sauce and buttermilk ranch but if you’re feeling adventurous, try the spicy-sweet Jalapeno Honey served on a honey crueller or the Big Cluck, which is their take on a Big Mac.
Liberty Village’s go-to spot for buttermilk fried chicken and waffles certainly does not disappoint. Served with brown sugar butter and hot honey sauce on the side, it’s a sweet and savoury meal that’s totally worth the post-brunch food coma.
If you want to go all out this National Fried Chicken Day, round up a few friends and make a reservation at Momofuku Noodle Bar for their signature fried chicken feast. The meal includes two whole fried chickens, one southern style and one Korean style, and it comes with scallion pancakes, ginger scallion sauce, jalapeno garlic sauce, pickled vegetables, radishes, herbs and tabasco salt on the side.
If you’ve ever wanted to eat a piece of fried chicken bigger than your head, this is the place to go. Located in the heart of the city near Yonge and Gerrard, their schnitzel-sized offerings come in a range of flavours and levels of crispiness that will surely satisfy every kind of fried chicken connoisseur.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to venture down to the deep south for quality chicken and waffles. Just head to Dirty Bird in Kensington Market and order the ODB. The meal – a crispy-yet-juicy quarter leg covered in their signature Dirty Sauce atop a buttery waffle with maple syrup – is a delicious Canadian take on a classic.
This hip West Queen West brunch spot is well-known for it’s fun cocktails and ambience, but the real star of the show is their fried chicken thigh sandwich. A juicy, crispy piece of chicken, topped with avocado spread and cilantro and nestled between two milk buns really hits the spot. And if you’re looking to go sans buns, the County Fried Chicken is served on top of craft paper on your table and drizzled with Gochujang & Hoisin Espresso BBQ sauce – it’s a real messy treat!
Tucked away on The Esplanade, Cluck Clucks is another top-notch joint for chicken and waffles. While they have the basics down pat, what really sets this place apart are their sauces, showcased perfectly in their Cluck Yeah sandwich. The combination of Dill Mayo and Chipotle Aioli blend surprisingly well together and the creamy sauces compliment the crispy chicken nicely. Just don’t forget the napkins!
This St. Clair spot has topped “Best of” lists for years and for good reason. Their four piece buttermilk fried chicken dinner is a real winner. Served with a mountain of shoestring fries, dipping sauces and coleslaw, this meal is a classic combo that is anything but basic.
If decadent comfort food is what you’re after, WBK has it in spades. There are several fried chicken meals on the menu, from sandwiches to half-chicken dinners and even a KFC-style Double Down sandwich, complete with bacon, cheese, sriracha mayo, and a sunny side up egg. Summer diets be damned!
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