In Atlanta, you can easily find food with a mix of old southern charm and urban flare. Fried chicken is no exception! Here are our top picks, however you like it: in buttermilk or with a skillet, and always with a fresh side of cornbread.
Watershed on Peachtree
You can only find the best-fried chicken in Atlanta on Wednesday nights. In fact, you might want to try it early- it can sell out before 7:30.
The famous chicken is soaked in buttermilk for 24 hours, flavored with country ham, and fried to a perfect crisp. Watershed prides itself on its farm-to-table cuisine, and rotates a seasonal set of sides, like Brussels sprouts, local peas & carrots, spicy collard greens, Appalachian cider beans, and whatever else is in season.
South City Kitchen
South City Kitchen offers a classy but mouth-watering plate of buttermilk-soaked Springer Mountain chicken. To start off, try the fried green tomatoes with goat cheese and polish off some biscuits drenched in apple butter. The farm-to-table restaurant also has upscale sides, like collard green kimchi, lobster mac-and-cheese, and even a side of fried chicken thigh (in case you can’t get enough).
If you’re in the mood for a plate that pairs crispy chicken with fluffy waffles coated in Vermont maple syrup, you have to try South City Kitchen’s Sunday brunch.
JCT kitchen & bar
This chicken is soaked in buttermilk before it’s fried up and drizzled with sweet molasses. The Springer Mountain chicken is served with collard greens and a side of house-made hot sauce.
The best time to go is for “Sunday Supper”, which features an entirely different menu with the classic “meat and three”. Dinner starts with warm biscuits with blueberry jelly and a fresh salad. The main course features skillet fried chicken (or another meat of your choice) with summer squash casserole, peaches & creme, pan roasted broccoli, collard greens, mashed potatoes, or mac & cheese. Finally, a slice of chocolate cookie pie will make sure you don’t leave hungry.
Mary Mac’s Tea Room
If you’re looking for real, classic soul food, Mary Mac’s is your stop- the chicken is double-battered and fried to perfection. Don’t choose between the handmade cornbread muffins (from corn that’s shucked in-house), crumbly peach cobbler, and fried green tomatoes- try all the southern staples! To make it a truly southern experience, add a mint julep on the side.
BUSY BEE CAFÉ
This chicken marinates for 12 hours before it’s flash-fried in peanut oil. You can smother your chicken in delicious pan gravy, and add some home-style sides like black-eyed peas, broccoli-cheese casserole, collards, or carrot soufflé.
One Eared Stag
At last! You can order a whole chicken! Just one is $20, but if you’d like to spring for two it’s only $30 for both. One Eared Stag has the most eclectic menu on the list (beef tongue pie, for example), but on Monday nights, it returns to classic skillet fried chicken and sides like collard greens, butternut squash, grits, and braised red cabbage.