Perched right by the Flatiron Building, “Hill Country Chicken” is the place to go when the Shake Shack in the park is lined up all the way down to Union Square. Serving fried chicken with loads of sides and plenty of homemade pies (including their Apple Cheddar Pie that I really enjoyed), there are plenty of options for a good Southern meal.
Fresh fried chicken can take awhile to make, plus there is that inherent amount of grease and high-calories that come with it. For the diner on the go, “Hill Country Chicken” also offers up some hearty sandwiches, including their fried chicken sandwich with the cutesy name, the “Chickwich”.
The Chickwich ($8) with a side of fries (small size for $2.50) is actually bigger than this photo lets on. Both are pretty immense, so don’t let the “small” fool you. You definitely get what you pay for with this sandwich in terms of size, and thankfully, also in taste.
The chicken breast was incredibly moist and juicy, tender to the touch with a firm fried crust on the outside. No excess grease leaks onto your hands as the outside is kept nice and dry, letting the internal juices do the run down your forearm instead of leftover oil. The coating is a thick amount that stays in place and has a nice fresh flavor (as in clean frying oil and fresh ingredients), but the star here is the chicken. There is not an obscene amount of coating on the breast, just the perfect balance that I like where you get exactly what you need so that you are not picking chunks of fried trash off of your meat.
Here you can see the plentiful heap of sour pickles atop this chicken breast, as well as the lightly toasted bun. I don’t know what it is about the combo of pickles and fried chicken, but they marry well with the buttery bun to become a very intriguing way to serve chicken and add some complexity to it. Whoever discovered this combo of pickles and fried chicken needs to win an award.
The fries, left with their natural skin on, were very salty and would go well with a soda or ice cream float. Purely because the primary flavor is those highly-visible salt crystals that are dumped on these floppy fries. I liked the potato part and the clean taste of the fries, but they could have been a lot less salty. The structure of these is not a crunchy or particularly crisp fry, they are more soft and flexible, which is a personal taste as to whether you like that or not. I prefer my fries to be crisper, so I would skip these the next time and try a different side dish, like their mashed potatoes, corn salad, or pimento mac & cheese.
All pretentiousness aside, I love me a fried chicken and pickle sandwich, and “Hill Country Chicken” did it just the way I like it. Good price, high-quality, and also of note, excellent service. I remain impressed with “Hill Country Chicken” overall, so I think it’s time for me to dive in and go for the fried chicken and sides next time. Arteries, be damned!
“Hill Country Chicken” is located on 1123 Broadway on the corner of 25th street, New York, NY 10010.