It would impossible to know for sure where to find the best fried chicken. I hit up as many fried chicken spots as I can in Greater Los Angeles. I'm more attracted to less crowded places and hidden gems in Los Angeles where the focus is on the food rather than what you are wearing. When you desire something better than Popeye's, try the fried chicken at one of these places.
Here are my favorite places to eat fried chicken in Los Angeles:
Wendill's Chicken House (since 1929)
Always empty and located on a quiet stretch deep in the Valley, this is my favorite fried chicken in Los Angeles. It's now a Thai restaurant, but the building is still there and they've kept the same fried chicken from 1929. Try it with the Thai honey sauce. Tip: Order ahead over the phone. It takes 20 minutes to prepare.
The Hungry Fox - Best chicken and waffles in LA
Thai-owned diner so you'll probably want to eventually try their sai ua (spicy Thai sour sausage). The star of the show is their fried chicken and waffles. The fried chicken is some of the best in LA and with the waffle combo, it is my absolute favorite in Los Angeles.
CW & Chris - Chicken breast perfection
Probably the best fried chicken breast in Los Angeles. Deeply flavorful and juicy chicken breast. Unreal. So delicious. Tip: Order takeout over the phone as it takes 20 minutes or longer to prepare. I saw many people pickup their order and leave. Many people order trays of fried chicken. You probably don't want to be sitting around in this part of town. There's a bulletproof barrier between you and the cashier. Nipsey Hustle was gunned down not far from the restaurant.
Max's Fried Chicken of Manila - Filipino classic and institution in Manila.
Newly renovated in Glendale, Max's is an institution in Manila. I grew up eating Max's in the Philippines and often celebrate events at their Glendale location here in Los Angeles. The fried chicken is juicy and the skin is light and crisp. Don't stop there. Order a spread of Filipino dishes to share with your friends and family. We always get the sinigang, kare-kare, lumpia, and beefstek. The best part is celebrating birthdays. They sing to you and bring a frame around the celebrant for social media.
Chef Kang Food Rehab
Go for Korean fried chicken souped up with different sauce options. If you're indecisive like me, ask for recommendations.
Better than Popeye's which makes this the best fast food fried chicken ever. Get the rice and gravy with it. Thank me later.
During my first and only visit to this Thai restaurant with a weird name, the chef's highly recommended dish was their hat yai fried chicken. I normally don't eat at places with "what were they thinking?!" strange restaurant names, but it's Thai food. I love Thai food.
Secret fried chicken where chefs eat. I discovered this fried chicken while Insta-stalking a chef. He said that's the best hot chicken in Los Angeles. I loved this fried chicken and bar pie. I love pie. Go for fried chicken and pie... oh yeah, there's beer too. Burp.
I was really there to check out the interiors with a side of Korean fried chicken. While I was there, I discovered a better than average bar program so you'll you want to get a cocktail too maybe. They recommended the traditional Korean fried chicken. Probably the best Korean fried chicken in Los Angeles.
Hotville Chicken - The original fried chicken from Nashville
Kim Prince brings her family's Nashville hot chicken to Los Angeles. It is said that her family invented Nashville Hot Chicken in the 1930s. We're very lucky to have her in Los Angeles doing pop-ups. Follow her on Instagram and get yourself some authentic Nashville Hot Chicken. I scratch my head whenever I see that line in Chinatown at Howlin' Rays. Why people? Hotville Chicken is where it's at!
If you're a fan of architecture, you'll want to visit Pann's for its Googie-style architecture. You'll also want to get their fried chicken and waffles. Evan Kleiman says that it's her favorite fried chicken in Los Angeles. When you're near LAX, this is where you'll want to eat. It's also famous for being a film location in Los Angeles.
More well known for their artisan soba selection, I recently visited for soba and asked our server what her favorite item is on the menu and she said "karaage" (Japanese fried chicken) with a smile on her face. I was quite pleased with it and want to hit up every karaage place in Los Angeles and the South Bay now. I've had unremarkable karaage before and not as impressive as Otafuku's version.
For $24, this is probably the priciest Margherita pizza I've ever ordered at a restaurant. It is definitely sharable. I decided to eat the whole pie just like Julia Roberts in Eat, Pray, Love. This is how I judge any Neopolitan-style pizza. It's very simple, but difficult to master.
This is no ordinary pizza I said to myself as I justified the splurge. It's still cheaper than a flight to Italy just to try pizza in Naples, where pizza was born.
Da Michelle is one of the oldest pizzerias in the world established in 1870. Some say it is the oldest. Some say it is the best. It became more famous as the place where Julia Roberts (Liz) "had a relationship" with her pizza in the film, "Eat, Pray, Love."
I hear it is difficult to snag a table at the original restaurant in Naples. There's always a wait and a long line. Many have said during my research that this is the "best pizza in the world."
Angelenos -- we're lucky they chose Los Angeles as their first location in the United States. Word is that there are more on the way.
I made an Open Table reservation to visit on the first day they opened and as soon as they opened their doors. I rarely do this with the exception of select restaurants in Los Angeles.
The last time I showed up right on opening day and time was when Here's Looking at You opened in Koreatown -- because restaurant openings rarely excite me. I could say that I've been there, done that (LOL). The truth is that there are usually hiccups and service issues the first 6 months when a restaurant opens. That's a given.
I walked in and they offered me a seat in the classy looking, expansive bar or the communal table on the patio. I asked for their opinion and they told me to have a look. The hosts didn't read the fact that I requested a seat in front of the chef. This is my default setting or special request on Open Table. In this case, Michele Rubini, the master pizzaiolo.
I've already prepared my mind for service snags and mishaps as soon as I walked into the restaurant to lessen my desire to walk out in disappointment. I really wanted to try the pizza.
Not every restaurant will dazzle me on opening day like Here's Looking at You.
As soon as I was seated at the pizzaiolo's (chef's) table, I sat there for a full 10 minutes and not one person acknowledged or greeted me. I watched as the owner worked the room greeting everyone else.
Normally, I would have walked out of the restaurant by now, especially for this kind of a restaurant charging $24 for a pizza. There should be no excuses for service mishaps on opening night.
I decided to give them a chance and sat a while longer. I later lost my patience so I flagged down the first person I saw that walked out of the pizza kitchen and told them to send someone over to me. In my experience, within 5 minutes, they should have greeted me and offer me a drink or ask me if I had any questions about the menu. They weren't that busy and the reason I chose to go at 5 pm.
This place kind of reminds me of Europe so I felt like I had to lower my American service expectations at this restaurant. I shouldn't say that though as I've been to a Japanese-owned restaurant in Beverly Hills around opening time and their service was at the highest level from the moment I walked in through the time I walked out the door. They even put my jacket on me, zipped up my open handbag, and walked me out the door to thank me.
So yes, this restaurant definitely needs to work on service, but maybe it's not trying to be that kind of restaurant. Not one person thanked me as I walked out the door at this restaurant.
The restaurant is gorgeous and what I would expect for a restaurant opening in Hollywood or West Hollywood. It does have an air of pretentiousness of a West Hollywood restaurant. I suggest you dress stylish and not come in shorts, t-shirt and flip-flops.
The most genuine person and nicest in the restaurant seemed to be the pizzaiolo who looked at me in the eye for my approval from inside the kitchen with a nice, friendly smile.
There's valet parking across the street or try to find metered street parking around the block.
No one was sitting at the pizza bar, but to me, this should be the most coveted seats in any restaurant. Their outdoor patio is beautiful. I would request a table there on a warm, sunny day or on a pleasant summer evening. The inside of the restaurant is very design forward. You will feel like you are in a newly built modern designer home.
VERDICT: Go for a taste of pizza from Naples, the birthplace of pizza. I read that they use the same recipe and same ingredients as their restaurant in Naples. Your Neopolitan-style pizza will be soupy or soggy, but that is how it is supposed to be.
Hello, I'm Anne.
I was born and raised in Los Angeles, and I love exploring Los Angeles like a tourist. I have as much fun in my hometown as I do traveling in another country. I live to eat (good food) and travel!