There we were. Sitting on a curb outside what I could only assume was an old gas station, waiting for our fried chicken. No, let me rephrase that, we were actually waiting for hot chicken. It’s different.
Hot chicken is a Nashville specialty, and as the name suggests, it packs some heat. We first encountered this fiery phenomenon at Pepperfire in Nashville, TN . Sitting under a carport alongside a busy road we dug our teeth into some of the spiciest fried chicken we had ever encountered. Tears ran down our face as we licked every last morsel off our fingers. And it was good (you can read that post here).
Hot chicken gets it’s kick from a paste of cayenne that’s liberally applied to the bird prior to frying, and let me tell you, it does the trick. It’s not for the faint of heart and it says so right on the menu at the only place I’ve found in NYC dishing out this delight, Peaches HotHouse.
This Bed-Stuy restaurant is frying up some sensational chicken and I can’t be the only one who thinks so because it was packed to the gills when we visited.
They’re only open for lunch…sorry “brunch”…from 10am-4pm on Saturday and Sunday so that might have had something to do with the line out the door. The rest of the time they’re serving up dinner, seven days a week.
It looked to me like they serve their full menu at brunch plus some extras like scrambles with chopped pork bbq or Andouille sausage. They have redneck-y southern staples like fried bologna (I saw this go out and it actually looked amazing) as well as some nice looking burgers and entrees. But let’s face it. You’re there for the chicken.
Nick ordered the hot chicken platter with collards ($13) and I ordered the hot chicken sandwich ($9). I got mine one step up from regular, hot, and Nick said “make it burn…extra hot please”.
The extra hot chicken didn’t disappoint. I think Nick went through a liter and a half of water, maybe more, as he happily, if not a bit painfully, picked through his moist yet crispy chicken. He was a fan. The collards were good but not all that meaty. I love a good smoked ham hock flavor in mine but these were still very yummy. His only complaint was that he got two breasts and a wing instead of a breast, thigh or drumstick and a wing.
My hot chicken sandwich was one of the better sandwiches I’ve had in a long while…and I mean it. A crispy (very crispy) piece of spicy fried chicken sat on a brioche-type bun with lettuce, tomato and a yummy sauce. The tomatoes seemed to have been roasted first with thyme and it made all the difference. I must have commented on this fact at least a few times during our meal. Sometimes it’s the little things that make big flavor. The combination of crispy chicken, fresh lettuce, tender bun, sweet roasted tomatoes and dripping sauce made for a fantastic sandwich. Highly recommended.
Only after we ate our meals and drank our plain old water did we realize that a bloody mary would have gone perfectly with both our dishes. We saw a few come out of the bar looking divine and in hindsight both would have ordered one.
There’s pretty ample seating at the bar and about a dozen two tops in this cozy joint. We arrived at noon on the dot on Saturday and were just in time to grab one of the last open tables before the line formed out the door. Service was actually on the slow side which I didn’t expect considering the size of the establishment, but the kitchen staff stepped up and delivered plates to help speed things up.
All in all Peaches HotHouse wow’d. As I was writing this the hubby came in, saw the menu up on my computer screen and said, “Are we going back to Peaches HotHouse again this weekend!?”. That says it all.