Nashville Hot Chicken

Nashville Hot Chicken

 

Nashvillehotchicken

 

Nashville Hot Chicken is a beloved local specialty of Nashville. Starting with a chicken breast, thigh and wing, it is then marinated in a liquid blend of spicy seasonings, then it is floured then fried and topped with a spicy paste that is mainly cayenne pepper. There are multiple heat levels you can choose from for hot chicken and the variations come from the paste and seasoning. The classic way to serve hot chicken is on top of a slice of white bread and topped with pickle chips.

 

But how did this trend start? It has been said that it goes back to the mid 1940’s where Thornton Prince III was reportedly a womanizer and after a late night out, his girlfriend made him a fried chicken breakfast and added extra cayenne pepper seasoning to inflict pain as revenge. Thornton liked it so much he created his own recipe and opened a chicken café. Now known as Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack, operated by Thornton’s great-niece. So much for revenge, right?

 

Started as sabotage, Nashville Hot Chicken has exploded and now the recipe has spread across the US. The former Mayor of Nashville, Bill Purcell, loves hot chicken so much that he sponsored the popular Music City Hot Chicken Festival, which hosts a “Nashville Hot Chicken Cook-off.” Today there are a few restaurants that are famously known for cranking out some of Nashville’s most delicious hot chicken.

 

Hattie B’s

 

If you are a tourist and new to Nashville, you will probably hear of the ever popular, Hattie B’s. Hattie B’s is new to the hot chicken scene, only open since 2012, but has become one of the most popular due to the location and word of mouth. They offer your choice of chicken in 5 heat levels: Southern (no heat at all, essentially just fried chicken, for the people who can’t handle the heat), mild/medium hot, damn hot, and “Shut The Cluck Up.” If you want to be a big-shot and order a heat level you can’t handle, don’t worry, Hattie B’s has a delicious menu of southern homemade deserts like banana pudding or a root beer float to cancel out the pain. But make sure to give yourself plenty of time if you want to go to the Midtown location, you will be standing in a long line of other anticipating fan’s.

 

Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack

 

If you want the authentic, and what is said to be the original, birth place of Nashville Hot Chicken, Prince’s is the place to go. Located in North Nashville, each chicken is made to order, so do not arrive in a hurry. Even on Friday and Saturday night’s when it stays open until 4am, you will find a line of hungry patrons. The chicken comes in four heat levels: mild, medium, hot, and extra hot. Pretty standard, right? Wrong. Event just the “hot” will make you sweat, your nose run and cause so much burning on the tongue, that you will not know where to turn for help. But the “extra hot” will cause you overall body discomfort to the extreme levels.

 

Party Fowl

 

Located in the Gulch, the latest addition to the hot chicken game is Party Fowl. Opening its doors in 2014, it features its main dish, no surprise, Nashville Hot Chicken. But they decided to serve it multiple ways! They have hot chicken nachos, hot chicken po’boy, Nashville hot catfish po’boy and Nashville hot tenders. For a trendier spin on hot chicken, Party Fowl is the the place to be, not to mention its long list of local craft brews to wash down the spice.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*