You have probably heard of and tried fried chicken and waffles in the past. I know I have. When I tried it for the first time, I was impressed, but I personally never fell in love with the pairing. I didn't fully understand the appeal behind combining these two disparate food.

After that experience, when I first heard about pairing fried chicken and doughnuts, I had a feeling I would probably feel the same way. But, boy, was I wrong. Astro Doughnuts and Fried Chicken truly blew my mind when I took my first bite into their "Fried Chicken Honey Breakfast Sandwich." They aim to bring "the quality, the fun, [and] the surprise" of this epic pairing to the rest of the world, and they're doing a damn good job at it.

Vaibhav Aggarwal

Originally from Washington DC, Astro has been a staple for fried chicken and doughnuts in the nation's capital. Having to wait in an hour-long line for a sandwich is a daily ordeal, and when Art Levitt, Operating Partner of Astro Doughnuts and Fried Chicken in Los Angeles, walked past this line while visiting DC two years ago, he had to stand in it to see what the hype was about. It was worth the wait. It was "the best thing I've ever had," said Art in his interview with Spoon University UCLA, and he knew he had to bring the brand back to California to share the "magic in a bottle."

Just a doughnut shop?

Vaibhav Aggarwal

First, let's talk about their doughnuts. If Astro was solely a doughnut shop, they would still be one of the best in the business. Taste? Check. Creativity? Check. Aesthetic? Check. It's no wonder they've been rated one of the "21 best donut shops in America" by Thrillist, and deemed to have "the city's best" doughnut in DC by the Washington Post.

They have a set of standard offerings, and come up with four unique flavors each month, which they rarely ever rotate or re-use, using freshly-sourced ingredients with a pinch of love in each one. Here are some of the highlights:

1. The El Diablo

Vaibhav Aggarwal

The El Diablo is a beautiful (because that's all that matters right?) doughnut featuring raspberry, lime, tequila and Amaro glaze, with candy ginger and lime topping. Tequila on a doughnut!? Only Astro could come up with that.

2. The Crème Brûlée

Vaibhav Aggarwal

The Crème Brûlée doughnut is one of Astro's signature offerings, featuring a deliciously soft golden doughnut, topped with sugar, and torched in fiery glory. Just watching the sugar melt made me want to as well.

3. The PB&J

Vaibhav Aggarwal

For a quick bite into your childhood, try Astro's PB&J doughnut. Filled with smooth jelly and topped with a scrumptious peanut butter frosting that melts in your mouth, you can't go wrong with this unique flavor.

Out of all of Astro's doughnuts, my personal favorite is the El Diablo; it had just the right amount of sweet and sour to be unique enough to make me want to come back to Astro to have another one.

[Enter fried chicken]

Finally, we can talk about doughnuts + fried chicken, and what makes Astro so unique aside from their incredible and unusual doughnuts.

One can feel a little less guilty eating these sandwiches, knowing Astro only uses fresh ingredients with no preservatives in their meals. We had the privilege of being able to watch a chef prepare some of these dishes, and it was clear that Astro has worked hard to create synergy in each sandwich with unique ingredients in some of them.

Here's a roundup of my favorite ones:

1. The Fried Chicken BLT

Vaibhav Aggarwal

The Fried Chicken BLT features crispy fried chicken topped with bacon, lettuce, tomatoes (who would've guessed), and a sauce of your choice, wrapped in a savory doughnut. It's basically everything you could want in a sandwich.

2. The Jalapeño Slaw Special Sandwich

Vaibhav Aggarwal

The Jalapeño Slaw Special Sandwich caters to customers with a taste for spice, which is right down my alley. The kick from the jalapeño complements the warmth of the fried chicken, and makes for a tasty, refreshing meal.

Astro Doughnuts and Fried Chicken is located in Washington DC, Falls Church, VA and Los Angeles, CA. We visited their newest LA joint, and we highly recommend checking it out if you're ever in DTLA!