Yes, the chicken at Lucky Chicken and Chirping Chicken is perfectly fine. But once you sample the bird at this new contender for your semi-fast food chicken dollar, you’ll never go back. So what is the difference? The name of the establishment tells all: Brine Chicken.
It’s that simple. Brining chicken — immersing it in a solution of salt, sugar, and whatever spices strike your fancy — seems so obvious you’d think someone would have hit on the idea before of opening a restaurant dedicated to brined bird. Yet, Dan Mezzalingua and Joe LoNigro, the creative forces behind Brine Chicken, appear to be able to lay claim to being the first.
They begin the process with fresh, responsibly-sourced antibiotic-free chickens, which spend 24 hours immersed in the house’s proprietary brine. The birds are then roasted in state-of-the-art ovens that ensure perfect doneness on the inside. After that, they are liberally coated with a house-blend blackened chili honey garlic sauce Finally, they are finished on a grill that creates a crisp exterior and locks in flavor and moisture.
Chicken combos run from $9 to $15. Sides also mark a refreshing change. Choices include the likes of coconut rice and peas, carrots pan-roasted with brown sugar and lemon, and roasted beets with goat cheese tzatziki.
Beer and wine are available.
Brine Chicken, 106 Eight Avenue (bet. 15th and 16th Sts.), 212-123-4567