Remember how I said I don’t go out to lunch during the week that often? And how because of that I’m not used to big midday meals? Well my lunch at Hill Country Chicken was a giant lunch. The kind of lunch that made me feel completely out of it for the rest of the day at work. Soul food coma indeed.
If you didn’t know, Hill Country Chicken is centered around all things Texas. I never thought that when I moved to New York City I would miss any food from my home state besides crawfish and Tex-Mex (can someone PLEASE tell me where to get good queso in the city??), but I realized just how much I missed other signature Texan things when I went here.
Besides providing all different kinds of comfort food like fried chicken and biscuits, they also have specialty Texas items like Shiner beer, Blue Bell ice cream, and even coffee from Mozart’s coffee shop in Austin. I was literally beaming when I walked in and saw all these wonderful things that reminded me of home.
The place is a good size, but kind of an odd shape since it’s on a corner, and has a downstairs area that looked like it was for banquets. I didn’t venture down there to check if there was seating too, but I’m thinking it does. There was a long line during the lunch rush, but it didn’t take long to get your food once you got up to the counter and placed your order.
I ordered the Coop Special, which comes with your choice of either a thigh and a drumstick or a breast and a wing along with a side. For the chicken, you can get it classic style, which according to their website means “southern fried” with their “signature shake,” or Mama El’s style which is the “special family recipe-skinless with a crunchy cracker crust.” I got the thigh and drumstick, classic style (because the skin is my favorite part of fried chicken!) with mashed potatoes as my side. And then I threw in a biscuit as well because why not.
The seasoning had a lot of flavor, and I loved how crunchy the skin was with the chicken still being moist. I just now realized that you can order your pieces of chicken in different styles, which I totally would’ve and should’ve done because I’m so curious what skinless fried chicken is like. Just like you would want and expect, the biscuit was buttery, and I love that they had little packets of honey for you to use.
I’m not sure how representative this place is of Southern fried chicken, because it’s different than any I’ve ever had flavor and texture wise, but I still thought it was delicious. And oh yeah, Hill Country Chicken has different kinds of pies and things called pie shakes too, which I didn’t order because I didn’t want to get TOO full at 1 o’clock in the afternoon (too bad it happened anyways). I’ve had cake shakes before and loved them so I figured it was the same idea and I could pass. Plus they only offer them in a limited amount of flavors depending on the day’s pie flavors, and that day was pumpkin pie, so I thought,”Ehh I’ll pass.” And as if I’m not having enough work lunch deja vu already with Clarke’s Standard, I totally regret not getting one now because how can I have fried chicken, mashed potatoes, a biscuit, and no pie?! One day I’ll learn.
The coop, classic style
New York, NY 10010