The CairoScene Fried Chicken Awards List
They made me write about fried chicken again and I felt it my civic duty to share the love with you. Here are the recipients of the "awards" I've created, its winners, losers, and inbetweeners. Enjoy.
Few things make this earth of ours turn on its axis; space magic, gravity probably, money and fried chicken (don’t believe me?). Fried chicken is a goddamn work of art and a healthy(ish) addition to anybody’s lifestyle, and we (me) here at Cairoscene believe that more people should be in the know about some of the best fried chicken establishments our Cairo has to offer.
Seeing as they only hired me because I write about fried chicken, these are only some of the best out there offering actual chicken (bones and all), so please enjoy this fucking thing and go eat at these places, none of them pay me even though they should.
Starting off the list with a more humble entry, Kansas has been pretty divisive when it comes to customer satisfaction; with half of its patrons saying it’s pretty good and the other half saying the ever-popular “kan 7elw zaman.” My experience? Great bang for buck, Kansas’s chicken is pretty ligit when it comes to texture, crispiness and fresh flavour, their meals are varied enough (as far as fried chicken can vary) to fit most everyone’s fried needs, and the price for any of them is pretty fine and dandy, their delivery is also freakishly fast. It is for these highly scientific observations that Kansas gets my arbitrary Drumstick of Satisfaction.
They seem to really like Kazaz here at the office, it’s as if it’s one of the job requirements (besides being able to breathe and write at the same time), and Kazaz can generally be found in high regard in many of the hearts of Downtown’s busy urban denizens. So I decided to try their excuse for fried chicken and I was pleasantly surprised; a massive improvement over standard practice with four (that’s one more than three) pieces of chicken, two buns and a shitload of fries, in addition to a pretty nice Tomeyya dip. The chicken itself is pretty juicy, crunchy and delectable for what it is and the portions were big enough to plug my hungry needs, and at like EGP 50 for a 4-piece meal (and a goddamn bucket for 100), Kazaz gets my Wishbone of Value.
I’ve previously gone into passionate detail about Kokio’s works of crispy art, but seeing as my love for the place surpasses that of my love of my own jiggly organs, I am spiritually obligated to spread the message of Kokio; a delightfully homey atmosphere, gracious and ultra-polite hosts and a roster of drop-dead gorgeous fried chicken (that soy chicken is the cat’s pajamas) and other authentic Korean culinary options, all tucked away in a peaceful corner of the usually turbulent Maadi, Kokio should be every fried chicken fan’s port in the storm. It is for these reasons and many more (it’s the K-pop) that Kokio gets my Breast of Perfection.
I like German things; red balloons, Rammstein and Lederhosen. One of the many things Germans are known for (let’s not go too far back) is over-engineering, need proof? Look at their machinery, weapons and their frying of chicken, and anybody who’s been to Wienerwald can attest to this; their Viennese style baked chicken is a traditional Austrian dish with Wienerwald’s magic German touch, taking half a roasted chicken, breading the Scheiße out of it and deep frying it to ungodly juicy proportions, the meat is tender and exploding with flavour and the crisp is something else. They also offer Schnitzel (of course) and Kiks (fried chicken breasts but better), Wienerwald gets my coveted Wing of Overachievment.
Admittedly, I don’t know much about how Syria and fried chicken are connected, Had I a proper source, I’d have given it its own feature, but suffice it to say that fried chicken you get from your local Syrian place is pretty bomb-ass. However, a decision must be made, and Abou Youssef stands head and shoulder above the rest; with their fried chicken broast with “Syrian Flavour,” whatever the hell it is must be some ancient middle-eastern secret, cause their chicken is something else entirely. Massive portions, superior crunch factor and enough flavour to overpower your senses (consensually), Abou Youssef gets my Thigh of Enlightenment.
Honorable Mention: Tazeg
You’d be amazed at how almost everyone doesn’t know about Tazeg’s not-so-secret fried chicken option, I mean it’s a pretty innocent mistake seeing as Tazeg mainly does grilled (and oddly flat) chicken, but if you muster up the courage to ask, you’ll be rewarded with a pleasant surprise; in my experience, it’s always been a massive fucking breast along with a modest drumstick and a wing usually, all coated in some oddly thick but flavourful breading, nestled safely on a bed of (slightly meh) fries. I have more appreciation for that fried chicken breast than I do for regular breasts, which isn’t saying much, for this, Tazeg gets my secret Giblet of Generosity.
Dishonorable Mention: KFC >:(
I don’t have the slightest care in the world if I get death threats for saying this, but as a former devotee to KFC, growing up with a 3-piece box to soothe the sadness was an essential part of my character. Nostalgia aside, KFC has been nothing but a massive disappointment in recent times; lacklustre flavour at best, breading that barely maintains composure with the meat and portions so small you’d think they’re frying pigeons behind the scenes and this is not even mentioning the price, and when I ask for chicken, I don’t expect the diarrhea that follows. I’m still wondering why they don’t give you two Antinal capsules along with the spork. It is for these reasons that KFC gets my dreaded Beak of Shame.