Fried Chicken-

As American as American food gets, beloved as a classic, and embedded in our culture.  From Colonial Sanders' cringe-worthy commercials to the infamous "Eat Mor Chikin" campaign, it's safe to say that Americans fall for chicken, no matter what.  While fast food and pop culture have definitely influenced our love, the best of the best fried chicken is out to be discovered.  As for me, I'm a fried chicken feign.  Country style, Tenessee hot, Buffalo, and Buttermilk, there really isn't any saying no, and I'm here to tell you where you can find amazing, classic, even innovative chicken in every state.  So plan that road trip- American Style, and 'raise you glasses for a toast, to a little bit of Chicken Fried'.  

Sidenote: places that are asterisked* are widely considered the best places for fried chicken in the country.

Alabama- Little Donkey* (Birmingham)

Oddly enough, the fried chicken widely considered the best in this deep southern state comes from a modern Mexican fusion restaurant that infuses fiery peppers into the chicken during the brining process.  The chicken comes with a side of house-made vinegar made with habanero peppers to truly spice up the heat.  

Alaska- Southside Grill (Anchorage)

Alaska isn't really a place that comes to mind when people think of fried chicken, but you can still find it!  Southside Grill is a casual spot serving classic American food including some deep fried chicken that comes with peaches for an interesting combination of flavors.  

Arizona- Welcome Chicken+Donuts (Pheonix)

With the strangest of strange combos, Welcome C+D offers the best of both worlds- gourmet freshly baked donuts and Asian inspired fried chicken. Who needs chicken and waffles when you can have chicken and donuts for breakfast or any meal of the day!

Arkansas- AQ Chicken House (Springdale)

AQ claims to be world famous, and it isn't hard to see why with their extensive menu of all thing fried chicken.  They have chicken sandwiches, chicken salads, and the classic full/half birds that can be also ordered boneless.  Having been around for over 50 years, this classic in the southern state serves up a mighty fine chicken.  

California- Howlin' Ray's* (Los Angeles)

The SoCal answer to Tennessee Hot Chicken, Howlin' Ray's uses all natural chicken for their abundant entrees complete with 6 different levels of spice to choose from.  Guests can either get classic platters, a sandwich, or chicken and waffles at the ever packed and popular LA joint.  

Colorado- The Post Brewing Company (Multiple Locations)

The Post's motto's "Hot Chicken Loves Cold Beer" sums up the restaurant perfectly.  The Brewery specializes in its own craft beer and homemade classic southern style chicken that it miraculously gluten free!  They have 4 different locations across Colorado.

Connecticut- Chicken Joe's (Cos Cob)

Super casual and super yummy, this fun little spot has a large variety of different chicken entries including a whole menu of different chicken nugget options.  Their fries are also apparently excellent which come in many varieties including buffalo chicken.  For sides, opt for the fried mac and cheese bites or the fried pickles.  

Delaware- Walt's Flavor Crisp Chicken Express (Wilmington)

As the name suggests, Walt's is quick; they offer both take-out and delivery with super speedy service for fantastic chicken.  The menu, pretty much all chicken, including chicken and waffles and chicken figures along with the usual side fixing, promises to satisfy any chicken lover.   

Florida- Yardbird Southern Table and Bar* (Miami)

Along with perfectly fried and brined chicken, this fun popular spot has a bustling bar stocked with 75 different kinds of bourbon.  Yardbird has been such a hit that they have started to expand to other cities such as Las Vegas and soon-to-be NYC.  

Georgia- Mary Mac's Tea Room* (Atlanta)

Mary Mac's claims itself to be Atlanta's dining room serving the best fried chicken around along with other southern delicacies.  The chicken can be ordered classic or smothered in homemade gravy.  And oh the sides, Mary Mac has around 35 different side options ranging from fried okra to mac and cheese.  So many choices!

Hawaii- Ray's Cafe (Honolulu)

Surprisingly enough, Hawaii is home to its entire own kind of fried chicken which is usually tossed in Asian inspired spices and sauces and serves with Hawaiian sweet rolls.  Ray's Cafe is widely considered the best place to find great authentic hole-in-the-wall Hawaiian fried chicken.  They are also known for their huge portions that come with cheap prices!

Idaho- Fork (Boise)

Fork is an upscale farm-to-table eatery that promises local and fresh plates.  Its chicken and waffles for brunch are legendary, boasting a ton of unique flavors.  They are topped with a cheddar cheese flavored waffle with freshly fried chicken, orange infused local-honey butter, and wild berry maple syrup.  Sounds like a breakfast in heaven!

Illinois- Little Goat Diner* (Chicago)

Little Goat is elevating what it means to be a diner with scrumptious gourmet American classics such as burgers, malts, and of course fried chicken!  The chicken is brined in both buttermilk and hot sauce making it extra flavorful.  If you're feeling extra adventurous for brunch, try their chicken and egg french toast which has to be just as tasty as it sounds.  

Indiana- BuffaLouie's at the Gables (Bloomington)

A well-known spot for students at IU and locals alike, BuffaLouis's is a sports bar that specializes in some of the best buffalo wings in the country.  Massive buckets of wings are popular, in addition to their sides of buffalo mac and cheese.  

Iowa- Pullman Bar and Diner (Dubuque)

New, hip, and popular, Pullman's is a modern take on classic American farm food taken up a notch.  The chicken is unique since it's served with a house-fermented hot sauce and local honey.  Talk about sweet and spicy!  Their locally sourced chicken is also available in a sandwich with coleslaw and cheese.  

Kansas- Hays House Restaurant (Council Grove)

Hays House is a historical landmark that was settled in the mid-1800s by pioneers.  It started as a restaurant and inn, and is still serving up its famous fried chicken to this day!  The chicken is cooked the old fashioned way with a skillet and served with mashed potatoes and homemade old-style gravy.  

Kentucky- Harvest* (Louisville)

In a state that has no shortage of classic southern comfort food, Harvest stands out as a more upscale gastronomic experience.  Almost all of the ingredients for dishes like bourbon queso, buttermilk fried chicken, and bread pudding are sources from local farms no farther than 100 miles from the restaurant.  

Louisiana- Willie Mae's Scotch House* (New Orleans)

Established in 1957, Willie Mae's granddaughter is still cooking up their original iconic chicken that makes this joint famous.  Along with sides such as biscuits and mash potatoes, the chicken makes for the perfect Southern meal in a real old time setting.  Many consider Willie Mae's to be the best fried chicken in America!

Maine- Gritty McDuff's (Portland)

Fried chicken isn't really known as a New England food, but buffalo wings are- hailing from upstate New York.  Gritty McDuff's serves up a mean plate of the tasty spicy fried chicken wings along with its array of house-made (brewery made) beer.  The pub is known all over Maine for having some of the greatest American food and beer.  

Maryland- Succotash Restaurant* (National Harbour)

Talk about flavors!  Succotash is a James Bread nominated restaurant with 2 southern and Asian infused chicken options that are to die for.  Choose either the chicken and waffles complete with bourbon maple syrup, rosewater scented waffles, pickled okra on top along with manchego cheese, or the dirty fried chicken with spicy Gochujang honey, blue cheese and pickles.  

Massachusetts- Trina's Starlite Lounge (Somerville and Amesbury)

Trina's is a quirky little place serving up classic American comfort food.  It's hip and retro, making the vide just as fun as the food.  The fried chicken here is ladened with hot pepper syrup and comes with a side of beans, apple celery slaw, cornbread, and honey butter.  Chicken and waffles is also a go-to on their brunch menu, again with that hot pepper syrup.  

Michigan- Seoul Street (Ann Arbor)

They pride themselves on having authentic and bold Korean barbecued fried chicken that can either come in the form of wings (the most popular) or thighs with a variety of uniques sauces.  The chicken is 100% natural and they claim that their frying method is relatively healthy compared to the standard.  Pair the chicken with some delicious fried rice and you've got yourself a meal! 

Minnesota- Revival (Minneapolis)

Tiny, hip, modern, and oh so popular, Revival is a northern gourmet take on classic southern food, including a mean fried chicken.  Aside from platters of a full or half bird, they have great sandwiches including a Chicken N' Waffle breakfast sandwich complete with fried chicken, fried egg, and bacon between two waffles and topped with maple syrup.   

Mississippi- Old Country Store* (Lorman)

Alton Brown claims that Old Country Store has the best fried chicken in the country, and it's now the only one he'll eat.  Unassuming and remote, they serve up fried chicken and a variety of sides daily through a buffet that attracts people from all over.  Third generation cook and owner, Arthur Mr. Davis is considered a legend in the area with his famous recipe that has been feature on Food Network.  

Missouri- Sweetie Pies (St. Louis)

Sweetie Pies claims it has the ultimate soul food, and it isn't hard to see why.  Their chicken, in the form of wings, has thousands of locals and visitors coming in each week.  In addition, they have all the classic sides such as mashed potatoes, fried corn, mac and cheese, okra and black-eyed peas.  

Montana- Roost Fried Chicken (Bozeman)

Chicken Galore at Roost!  Buckets, platters, sandwiches, waffles- everything chicken that you can ask for!  Guest can choose between classic and Nashville hot, along with 9 different signature sauces.  A specialty- "chicken on a stick" which is small and only 5 dollars is an interesting starter.  

Nebraska- Alpine Inn (Omaha)

The experience is part of the fun at Alpine Inn which has to be one of the most odd restaurants in America. Famous for great fried chicken, they are also just as famous for having live raccoons eat the chicken scraps while you dine.  While sounding bizarre (and potentially unsafe), the Inn is a must-try for any Nebraskan and has been around for decades.   

Nevada- Blue Ribbon Brasserie at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas (Las Vegas)

While the name might suggest otherwise, Blue Ribbon is famous for their classic fried chicken dish which is served with collard greens, mash potatoes, and gravy. The upscale restaurant has a wide range of different kinds of food with a sushi bar, seafood delicacies, and of course their fried chicken making it fun and spontaneous.  

New Hampshire- Delaney's Hole in the Wall (North Conway)

With a name like that, you know you are in for some good home-style cooking.  Delaney's specializes is some of the nations best buffalo wings which they claim are "fresh, juicy, and fried golden brown".  Choose between either their housemade buffalo sauce or honey sauce which are "award-winning".  

New Jersey- Chicken Supreme (Paterson and Hackensack)

Chicken everything here at Chicken Supreme!  A whole menu of wings, fried chicken, and chicken fingers along with chicken wraps and salads are available for you to get your chicken fix.  They also have all the classic sides to satisfy anyone's barbecue cravings.   

New Mexico- The Loyal Hound Pub (Santa Fe)

The Loyal Hound Pub prides itself on its comfort food, offering all sorts of hearty options to satisfy a hungry appetite.  Their fried chicken is served with a buttermilk chive waffle, spicy maple syrup and an apple slaw on top creating an unusual fun combo of the classic dish.  

New York- Anchor Bar (Buffalo)

Home of the original Buffalo Wings, this famous place is a must hit for any true chicken fan.  While there are plenty of great places for chicken in New York City, Anchor Bar is the real deal upstate.  The menu: just wings, and boneless bites along with a whole lot of sauce options.  

North Carolina- Beasley's Chicken + Honey* (Raleigh)

Uniquely pressure-fried and ladened with local honey, this chicken is the real deal.  The menu offers a range of chicken options like chicken and waffles, chicken and biscuits, a classic chicken sandwich and a smoking hot sandwich, along with the regular chicken entree.  For brunch, opt for the chicken eggs benedict  (Oh la la).  

North Dakota- Wild Rice Bar (Horace)

Wild Rice Bar is a classic small-town American bar that people travel from all around for good food, drinks and a good time.  They offer all sorts of chicken options ranging from the classic fried chicken dinner which is a favorite among locals to buffalo wings.  This bar is a classic All-American experience.  

Ohio- Belgrade Gardens (Barberton)

Barberton Ohio has claimed itself to be the Chicken Capital of the World because of the sheer amount of chicken raised there, and the amount consumed among 4 restaurants, all specializing in fried chicken.  Belgrade Gardens, which has been around for over 80 years, prides itself on its famous Serbian style chicken that is cooked so precisely to perfection that it doesn't need seasoning, and it's all extremely fresh coming straight out of Barberton.  

Oklahoma- Eischen's Bar (Okarche)

Eischen's claims to be the oldest bar in Oklahoma, so you know that their chicken is going to be the real deal.  Their menu is simple and limited, only serving beer and soft drinks, but the chicken is infamous.  Served with sweet potatoes and two varieties of pickles, it pairs well with a side of fried okra.  

Oregon- Pine State Biscuits (Portland)

This place is all about the biscuit sandwich which they make extremely tasty and insta-worthy.  Try the Wedgie- fried chicken with a fried green tomato, iceberg lettuce and blue cheese in a freshly baked biscuit, or the Reggie- fried chicken with bacon, cheese, and gravy.  What is even better, they have 4 locations around Portland, including a farmers market which makes it easy to get that chicken and biscuits fix.  

Pennsylvania- Federal Donuts* (Locations Across Philadephia)

Apparently, donuts and chicken seem to be quite the trend, and we are totally digging it.  At Federal Donuts, which has 6 locations including the Phillies' Stadium, you can order a platter of Korean style glazed or rubbed fried chicken which comes with a classic glazed donut on the side.  Talk about the full deal!  They also have chicken sandwiches and an array of gourmet freshly baked donuts.  

Rhode Island- Winner Winner (Newport)

As the saying goes, "Winner winner chicken dinner!", and this bopping spot delivers just that.  They are famous for their chicken sandwiches which come 3 different way: Original (pickles and Winner sauce), Viet Now (Slaw, Siracha and fish sauce), and Basic (Lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise).  They also have all the fixings for sides and the classic full bird dinners.  

South Carolina- Martha Lou's Kitchen* (Charleston)

Good old southern soul food is served up at Martha Lou's little pink food shack.  Martha Lou herself has been running the place for over 30 years, cooking up her classic chicken fried.  The sides, such as okra stew and lima beans are also not to be missed.  

South Dakota- The Keg (Sioux Falls)

The concept of The Keg is simple, simply good old-fashioned fried chicken cooked in traditional fryers and served with potato wedge french fries.  Family-owned, The Keg has been a community joint for over 40 years with a fantastic chicken-only menu. 

Tennessee- Prince's Hot Chicken* (Nashville)

"They say hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" and those words (Prince's Chicken's motto) ring true for their classic hot chicken.  Almost 100 years old, Prince's is the original place for Tennessee Hot Style Chicken which can be ordered in three different levels of hotness.  Simple good smokin' hot chicken is the only thing on the menu at this bbq shack, but it is not to be missed!

Texas- Max's Wine Dive* (Austin)

Whoever said that fried chicken and champagne don't go together are apparently wrong according to Max's which prides itself on its chicken and champagne combo.  The chicken is always cooked to perfection and is available for brunch, lunch, and dinner at this sophisticated dive.  There is even the option to create your own mimosas as if we didn't need another reason to try Max's.  They have locations in other Texan cities too!

Utah- Handle (Park City)

At this elevate American-inspired restaurant, everything is locally sourced and beautifully prepared.  The fried chicken breast is a menu favorite served with winter squash, greens, walnuts, and maple butter.  Different, but classy, Handle's fried chicken is sure to offer a variety of great flavors and a nice gourmet meal.  

Vermont- Misery Loves Co (Winooski)

Very popular and hip, Misery Loves Co puts a modern spin on American comfort food.  The menu is innovative, but the fried chicken is classic, served up family style with the choice of two hearty vegetables as sides.  Everything is locally sourced and freshly prepared, while the restaurant has a fun and refined vide.  

Virginia- Handsome Biscuit (Norfolk)

The concept of Handsome Biscuit is simple- gourmet flavorful sandwiches on a sweet potato biscuit.  A popular brunch spot, the Hella Fitzgerald, and the Blue Blazer are must tries.  The Hella Fitzgerald comes with fried chicken, bacon, cheddar and sausage gravy while the Blue Blazer comes with fried chicken, spicy pickled cabbage, and blue cheese.  Honestly, every one of their sandwiches sounds amazing!

Washington- Ma'ono Fried Chicken* (Seattle)

Ma'ono is an interesting concept.  It's a Hawaiian restaurant whose specialty is fried chicken.  That means that it comes served with kimchee, rice and chili sauce and is double fried with Hawaiian spice.  They also have a hot style chicken sandwich available with varying degrees of heat which the restaurant warns cannot be refunded if the heat is too much!

Washington D.C- Maketto

This fun innovative spot serves up a Taiwanese Fried Chicken which is as funky as it sounds.  The chicken is both sweet and spicy and is glazed with a spicy caramel sauce that can be soaked up with the homemade fluffy bread that comes with the chicken.  Different and irresistibly tasty!

West Virginia- Bluegrass Kitchen (Charleston)

Bluegrass Kitchen is a quaint little soul food restaurant that prides itself on being family owned and locally sourced.  Their menu is both classic and creative, featuring all sort of barbecue.  The fried chicken is brined in pickle juice (you heard that right) which sounds amazing, and for an interesting health-conscious twist, comes with kale and whipped cauliflower as sides.  

Wisconsin- Tomken's (Milwaukee)

Tomken's claims to be the home of the famous friendly fried chicken, and understandably so as it's consistently ranked the best in Wisconsin.  While the menu is all things chicken, Tomken's is really known for its wings which can be tossed in a variety of savory sauces, and either battered or grilled.

Wyoming- Cafe Genevieve (Jackson Hole)

Cafe Genevieve is a cute little bistro that is located in a log cabin!  They pride themselves on their meat and have what is widely considered the best fried chicken around.  Simply prepared the classic way, the chicken is paired with mac and cheese, making a heavenly combo ready to satisfy any comfort food seeker.  

Disclaimer: Not every best fried chicken spot in the country is on this list due to it being a list of "1 best per state". There are many places that I left out due to the sheer amount of great fried chicken restaurants.  

Well, there you have it- the United States of Fried Chicken.  I wouldn't blame you if you're hungry now!  And KFC will no longer do, so what are you waiting for, go and get some American classic Fried Chicken!