Hey, everyone! Sorry for the wait, but I’ve been busy as of late with tutoring. However, I hope you’re ready for a finger-lickin’ good blog post today on Mastication Monologues! While I have my affinity for certain fried chicken chains over others, Honey Butter Fried Chicken in Chicago has quickly become one of the best places I’ve ever had the artery-clogging, guilty pleasure.After a fun day out on the town with my friend Janice, we decided to try Honey Butter Fried Chicken for lunch dinner or as we called it, “linner”, or perhaps “dunch” would work just as well. That portmanteau was born out of the fact we went to eat around 5 pm since we’re old people deep down inside. I didn’t expect the restaurant to be as busy as it was at that time of day. We went in line, and there was a sense of pressure as the line continued to form behind us. As my pulse quickened and my eyes scanned over the fried chicken, sandwhich, and sides options, I eventually went for a four piece chicken platter ($15; too expensive) and a side of schmaltz smashed potatoes ($2.75). We quickly jumped off to the side as the tide of customers ebbed forth, and we decided to sit out on the patio that is in the back of the restaurant. However, Chicago that day decided to live up to its nickname the Windy City by greeting us with chilly blasts of wind that made us retreat into the main dining room (though the Windy City name doesn’t come from the weather phenomenon). Once settled in a more comfortable eating environment, bar the proximity of the tables to each other which invades a bit of your privacy, our food was brought out to us. It was smaller than I was anticipating for the price, but I was judging a crusty brown book by its cover.
I started with the corn muffins. These little nuggets of sweet, fluffy goodness were appropriately stamped with honey bees and honeycombs. My taste buds were abuzz after slathering the muffins with hefty helpings of the free honey butter on the side that were both creamy and not too sweet. You only get one complimentary tub with your chicken platter, but they just decided to give me another one because they’re cool like that. As for the chicken, while it doesn’t have the potent punch of Popeye’s spicy chicken strips, the breading was superb by being both bursting with flavor and not that greasy. The meat was succulent, and the best part was that the breast pieces were completely boneless which gave me a lot more chicken than I was anticipating. My duck fat mashed potatoes were excellent, and this is coming from someone who doesn’t like gravy on their mashed potatoes. I think it was because the light, salty flavor of the duck fat in the gravy wasn’t as overpowering as a beef based sauce. The actual taters were light and whipped. I even had some room in my bulging tummy for a bit of Janice’s creamed corn that was wild.
While the corn was run of the mill, it was kicked up a notch with Thai green curry. What that meant for each forkful was that the buttery corn flavor brought a subtle citrus zest that really surprised me in a good way. By the end of the meal, I was happier than a rooster in a hen house. So if you’re looking for a new take on fried chicken that goes beyond the standard establishments and normal price range, check out Honey Butter Fried Chicken.