I am all in favor of the recent fried chicken revival in New York City. Who doesn’t love an excellent bird well-spiced and fried crispy?
DH and I discovered HILL COUNTRY CHICKEN (map!) completely by accident one weekend. We were searching for lunch, and after stumbling around for many blocks, delirious with hunger, we saw the cheerful yellow and white striped awning by Madison Square Park and decided to give the place a try. It’s not like the line for Shake Shack nearby was getting any shorter.
I was familiar with the name of this chicken joint, but had not given it much thought in the past. I had no idea that the inside was like stepping into a time warp!
It’s a little hard to tell from just the photo, but the decor is a real throwback to a 1950s country kitchen. I was feeling a twinge of scenes from Back to the Future or Pleasantville, just with more fried chicken and pies. The furniture is all retro, and the service/display area has mid-century kitchen cabinet details. Meanwhile, a comforting stream of softly twangy music is piped in from the tall ceilings. I was completely hooked.
Oh yeah, and the food was amazing too.
They have a pretty good variety on their menu, but it all focuses on what they know best: the chicken. We stuck to the classics and went for the special “Mama’s Coop”, which was suitable for 2 people with a thigh, breast, wing, and drum (mix of dark and white meat), two biscuits, two sides (we went for coleslaw and carrot-n-raisin slaw in a vain attempt to counteract some of the fattiness with veggies), and two mini-pies (we got banana cream and double cherry). We also ordered a mint ice tea to wash it down.
Whoaaa, this was insanely delicious. The chicken was perfectly cooked, and the meat really did just fall off the bone. The pies were also excellent and tasted very fresh. (They put those 99-cent mini-pies you can get in a box at delis to shame!) It was the best meal for two ravenous city dwellers, and we happily munched away. In-between bites, I took a look around, and everyone else had the same ridiculously satisfied “I am eating awesome fried chicken” look on their face. Really, there is a face for that, and you can find it here.
Worth a return trip!