KCFC: Kansas City Fried Chicken
In all the storied histories of comfort foods, there are few single items as universally revered as fried chicken. Its gratifying simplicity has been embraced by many cultures and interpreted all over the United States. My lovely fiancée and I tried five different spots that we feel are fine examples of what Kansas City has to contribute to this clucking culinary field, and judging by how delicious it all was we can already tell– we’ll be back for Round Two. Until then, check out these five fantastic fried chicken spots:
Brookside Poultry Co. | 408 E 63rd St, Kansas City, MO
The fowl served at Brookside Poultry Co. comes to you after brining in sour cream for forty-eight hours– and the tangy taste & moist meat is more than worth it. You can order a breast, a thigh, wings or chicken tenders à la carte. For seven dollars you can make it an entrée, which includes butter-poached green beans and cheddar potatoes– like a pile of warm, cheesy potato salad. Of the sides, the potatoes were our favorite, but the green beans were extremely fresh too. The chicken was nice and crispy, and the portions were a good size. The cheddar biscuits were a highly rewarding start to the meal as well.
Stroud’s | 4200 Shawnee Mission Pkwy, Fairway, KS | 5410 NE Oak Ridge Dr. Kansas City, MO | 8301 W 135th St, Overland Park, KS
Leave your belts at home and prepare yourself for a quick change into stretchy pants after visiting Stroud’s. The sheer amount of food consumed makes this fine establishment stand out from the others. You can order white or dark meat, or chicken strips in a variety of combinations. There’s an upcharge to split, but it’s worth it. Shared meals come with green beans (be sure to dig for and enjoy the hidden chunks of meat), your choice of French fries, cottage fries (which appear like chips and were great for dipping), mashed potatoes, or baked potato. We tried the cottage fries and the mashed potatoes. The mashed were epic and came with a truly pleasurable gravy. Truth be told, the highlight of the meal was the cinnamon rolls. Fist-sized, cinnamon and sugar covered, butter bombs. Save room for them– I told you to leave your belts at home for a reason!
Strip’s Chicken | 1110 E Santa Fe St, Olathe, KS
We elected to toss up one version of fried chicken for this establishment. We wanted to sample somewhere specifically known for its chicken strips. Strip’s came to us based on an interesting recommendation. I once asked some friends if they could have one thing for lunch forever, what would it be? One of them said Strip’s chicken strips — so we knew we had to give it a try. We shared a seven-piece meal with fries and mashed potatoes with gravy. The dipping sauces were what made Strip’s especially fun —they have fifteen varieties! They said the most popular options was their Secret Sauce and Strawberry BBQ, which were both tasty and uniquely complemented the chicken. Lastly, each meal comes with a made-to-order hot baby donut, that made a great little bookend to this tasting.
Corvino Supper Club and Tasting Room | 1830 Walnut St Kansas City, MO
Located in the heart of the Crossroads, Corvino has plenty more to offer than that infamous burger. They had, simply put, the most satisfyingly savory of all the chicken we sampled. You can order a half or a whole bird, roasted or fried. Treat yo’ self and go fried. This chicken had great cornmeal coating and was served with house-made pickles and a chili butter, which is akin to hot sauce but slightly richer. The pieces are a great size and you get a generous variety of both white and dark meat. The portions are perfect for sharing — so sidle up to the bar, order a cocktail and enjoy!
Rye KC | 10551 Mission Rd, Leawood, KS & 4646 JC Nichols Parkway Kansas City, MO
From the owners of Blue Stem, Rye KC offers a wide variety of comfort foods with a slightly higher-end take. The original location opened in Leawood six years ago and expanded out to include the Plaza. We found their chicken to be especially crunchy and flaky. It was, perhaps, the crunchiest of all the poultry we surveyed. So, if crunch is your thing, make sure you swing by Rye. Their chicken was served with hot sauce, delicious whipped mashed potatoes with ham gravy and a simple side salad. Hottest tip for this place: whatever it takes, make room for dessert, because their pie cannot be beat.