Food & Drink

Nashville’s 8 Best Under-the-Radar Hot Chicken Dishes

Published On 04/14/2015 Published On 04/14/2015
Brita Britnell/Thrillist

Chicago has its deep dish pizza. Philly has its cheesesteaks. Seattle has its absurdly milky coffee. And Nashville has its hot chicken. Visitors come from all over to burn their tongues at places like Hattie B’s, Bolton's, and Prince’s, but there's more to the city's hot chicken scene than just the iconic spots -- that's why we tracked down the spice-laden dishes from restaurants you won't find on any hot chicken best-of list, including Nashville Lifestyles, Visit Music City, and yours truly.

Otaku South

Hot Chicken Buns

Otaku South (address and info)
East Nashville
What goes perfect with a big bowl of ramen? Nashville hot chicken topped with kewpie slaw on a steamed bao bun. Obviously. The Hot Chicken Buns are on its “Snacks” menu and make for the perfect appetizer.

Brita Britnell/Thrillist

Nashville Hot Chicken

Tenn Sixteen Food & Drink Co. (address and info)
East Nashville
When Tenn Sixteen first opened its doors, it did not feature hot chicken on its menu because the head chef wanted to make sure that he did Nashville hot chicken justice. He traveled around to all of the best hot chicken joints in town and tested his own recipe until he perfected it, using fresh ginger and white pepper.

Whiskey Kitchen

WK Hot Chicken

Whiskey Kitchen (address and info)
The Gulch
At Whiskey Kitchen, the WK Hot Chicken is one of its chef's specialties, and for good reason; it’s cooked up Southern-style in an iron skillet and served with creamy chipotle mac & cheese (which deserves an article all on its own). And since you’re there, you might as well pair your hot chicken with some world-class whiskey.

Brita Britnell/Thrillist

The Princess

Biscuit Love (address and info)
The Gulch
We mentioned Biscuit Love in our round-up of The Best Breakfast Spots in Nashville, but we’re listing it again because its biscuits really are that amazing. Its take on hot chicken comes in the form of this buttery & delicious hot chicken biscuit that’s drizzled with honey and served with pickles (naturally).

The Sutler

Nashville Hot Nuggets

The Sutler Saloon (address and info)
Berry Hill
Hot chicken makes an appearance on The Sutler’s delicious menu in the form of delicious Nashville Hot Nuggets. The dish consists of buttermilk-battered chicken breasts, livers, and gizzards served in the traditional fashion: on top of a thick piece of toast with a side of pickles. Find them on the “Late Nite Eats" and  "Snacks” menus, and never look back.

Saint Anejo

Hot Chicken + Waffles for brunch and Hot Chicken Tacos for lunch or dinner

Saint Añejo (address and info)
The Gulch
Saint Añejo is a Mexican restaurant in the Gulch with a rock & roll vibe to complement an interesting menu. It features several hot chicken options, incl. Hot Chicken Tacos, Hot Chicken Skillet Nachos, AND its new brunch menu was just rolled out, which includes this Hot Chicken + Waffles dish topped with -- get this -- a cream cheese drizzle.

Party Fowl

Fried "Hot Chicken" Nachos

Party Fowl (address and info)
The Gulch
Party Fowl is new to the hot chicken scene in Nashville and it has some unique dishes, ranging from Fried "Hot Chicken" Nachos to Hot Chicken Po’ Boys and Hot Chicken Breast & Beignets. Its nachos are made with homemade bacon-fried tortilla chips, and topped w/ hot chicken plus all of the usual nacho trimmings.

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1. Otaku South 604 Gallatin Ave Ste 201, Nashville, TN 37206 (East Nashville)

This East Nashville ramen slinger is a good bet for warm, tasty, filling noodles. But did you know you can also get some killer hot chicken here? It also features a super-tasty dish called Hot Chicken Buns on its snack menu. Don't pass 'em up.

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2. Tenn Sixteen Food & Drink Co. 1016 Woodland St, Nashville, TN 37206 (East Nashville)

Although you can debate how to spell the name (Tenn Sixteen, Tenn16, etc.), you can't debate that it has some of the best Southern fare in Nashville. It's dishes are elevated with Cajun elements that make them as unique as they are tasty. And if you get the hot chicken, you won't be disappointed.

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3. Whiskey Kitchen 118 12th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203

Located in the Gulch, the menu here consists of chef-inspired pub favorites and wood-fired pizza, along with the city’s largest collection of whiskeys, bourbons, ryes, and Scotch.

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4. Biscuit Love 316 11th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203 (The Gulch)

The offshoot of a one-time food truck, the beloved Biscuit Love is a fast-casual breakfast mecca in the Gulch. The specialty is all in the name: biscuits are at the forefront of the menu, served just out of the oven with butter and honey, with fried chicken and gravy, as buns for a burger, as “Bonuts” (fried biscuit doughnuts), and more. Enjoy your flaky, buttery biscuit any way you want it, for breakfast or lunch, every day of the week.

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5. The Sutler Saloon 2608 Franklin Road, Nashville, TN 37204 (Berry Hill)

Located in the Melrose neighborhood, The Sutler serves pan-Southern classic fare and is home to live music, making it a premier dinner and a show destination in Nashville.

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6. Saint Añejo 1120 McGavock St, Nashville, TN 37203 (Downtown)

This Downtown spot serves high-end Mexican cuisine and has a TEQUILA LIBRARY, which is exactly what it sounds like: a private space chock full of tequila that can be rented out for tequila tastings, birthday parties, or as a lavish way to tell your friends you just won the lottery.

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7. Party Fowl 719 8th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203 (The Gulch)

As the name implies, Party Fowl is known for its fowl treatment, namely the classic Nashville hot chicken, served in a variety of dishes with varying heat levels for every palate -- Southern fried, mild, medium, hot, or Poultrygeist (if you think you can handle it). Try the buttermilk-brined delicacy as a po-boy, over Texas toast with beignets, on a deconstructed Cobb salad, or in its classic sandwich form with dill pickles and cole slaw. No matter your preference, the poultry-centric, hometown Gulch eatery has nearly two dozen local brews on draft to wash it down.

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