09 February 2018

My hygge = fried chicken

When I was growing up in the south suburbs of Chicago, we would occasionally get Brown's Chicken, a chain known only to the locals that served a southern-ish version of fried chicken that is still, and will always be, my ideal.  But now that I am an occasional visitor to the Nashville area for both family and business trips, I've also become totally sold on Nashville Hot Chicken (it's just fried chicken that may or may not be spicy, guys). When I found out there was a place claiming to make the real deal in hipster, foodie Fort Collins, Colorado, I was so skeptical I had to try it.

It's called Music City Hot Chicken (next door to the wonderful Black Bottle Brewing), and it is amazing! It's not terribly cheap (you pay for the luxury of sitting in a clean place in a safe neighborhood, I guess), but it's a mountain of food.

My tasty meal on a particularly cold day in January.

Let's start with the fried chicken: it's super crunchy, only a little greasy, and the batter is super thick, so you're getting a ton of tasty coating on each bite. I've had both hot and green chili seasoning, and they are both great. For a medium-to-medium-plus girl, hot is about as far as I'll ever go up the spicy scale.  The green chili (not a traditional flavor, but what the hell, it's FoCo) reminds me ever so slightly of Indian food. The leg quarter is a ton of food (maybe too much for me, pictured above), and the chicken tenders are juicy white meat and very generous in size. as well.

The dipping sauces, I kind of don't get.  The spicy remoulade and honey mustard didn't add anything special to the chicken, but the Fireball maple syrup was great with the green chili, if you like that sort of thing.

Mac and cheese is definitely made from scratch with pimento cheese.  The baked beans are a great balance of sweetness and tang, and I think they are my favorite.  Haven't had any other sides, but the waffle looks very fluffy and nice, too.

The blues/funk/R&B they play over the system is the cherry on top, but it's way too loud in the dining room.  Sit at the bar if you want to be able to talk at all. The servers are exceedingly competent (food comes out hot and shockingly fast) and friendly, making this perhaps the only bar I have ever enjoyed sitting at.

I don't think these guys are in any danger of going out of business anytime soon, given the crowds I've seen at lunchtime.  But hurry up and go--it's as comforting as any of the stupid candle-and-oversized knit throw photos floating around Pinterest. This is a version of hygge I can wrap my brain around.

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