Everything’s better when it’s fried and that especially rings true for chicken. Fried chicken is the ultimate guilty pleasure food in all its forms. Whether it is a large crispy drumstick or an addictive bite sized snack, everyone has a favourite when it comes to fried chicken. Unfortunately a lot of fried chicken is often more of a miss than a hit with some being too greasy, bland or worse – soggy. Luckily, Toronto has a lot to offer and here are a few of the best and most unique places to satisfy your fried chicken cravings.
Gushi Japanese Street Food did pop-ups around the city and opened its first location in one of the shipping containers at Market 707 with a recent second addition on Queen St. West. Gushi is known for its Japanese style karaage fried chicken which is marinated for 24 hours with flavours of soy and ginger before frying and served in smaller boneless pieces. Order Gushi’s fried chicken as a skewer or in one of their signature purple rice bowls such as the Gushi Original with a sesame vinaigrette, spicy mayo, green onions and namami pepper.
Don’t let the name of the restaurant fool you, our Toronto branch of Chef David Chang’s Momofuku Noodle Bar restaurant is also home to his famous duo of fried chicken. Only offered as a large format meal (with the smallest feeding four to six people) you get two whole fried chickens with an abundance of Korean inspired sides such as scallion pancakes for wrapping and a variety of pickles and sauces. One chicken is fried Southern style and the other is Korean style with a sweet and spicy sauce.
PG Clucks opened earlier this year in Little Italy and is already quickly becoming a favourite in the city. PG Clucks’ are known for their fried chicken sandwiches but also sells them in boneless pieces with classic sides like potato salad and coleslaw. Their chicken is brined with lemon and herbs for 24 hours and then in buttermilk for six hours, leaving the meat moist and flavourful. PG Clucks’ is for takeout only but our insider tip is that you can also order it at Birreria Volo located beside it if you want to sit and enjoy it with beer or two.
The Stockyards have been a prime spot for fried chicken since it opened its doors in 2009 on St. Clair West. Their fried chicken is brined with a variety of herbs and spices and marinated in buttermilk before it is fried and served with fries and creamy coleslaw. The Stockyards only seats 18 people but it’s worth the wait. During Sunday brunch, they offer their fried chicken on a Belgian waffle topped with a chili maple molasses citrus glaze – the perfect sweet and savoury breakfast. Aside from the fried chicken, you can also find their pit smoked chicken on their menu on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays after 5pm.
Kanpai Snack Bar is a modern Taiwanese restaurant with small shareable plates in the heart of Cabbagetown and is especially known for their “TFC” Taiwanese Fried Chicken. It is classic flavours of Taiwanese peppered salt and comes with a sprinkling of fresh red chili peppers, scallions, cilantro, wedge of lemon and sweet chili sauce on the side. Playing off their TFC name, you can also order the chicken as a 12 piece family meal with a variety of Taiwanese inspired sides like their potato slaw with a Szechuan pepper corn dressing and also a six pack of PBR beer to wash down the chicken.