Best fried chicken in Miami
Bird & Bone’s chef/partner Richard Hales executes the signature sweet-and-spicy combination of Nashville-style hot chicken to perfection. Though he does take some freedom in the presentation: drizzles it with hot mustard sauce and Florida honey, tops it with house-pickled cucumbers and sets it atop a thick slice of Zak the Baker country bread. While the dish is flawless as is—tender meat, flaky skin, addictive flavors—the brunch version takes it to new gluttonous levels with a thick cornbread waffle, candied bacon and bourbon syrup. You might need a nap after this one.
You can’t go wrong with chicken made according to a 100-year-old recipe passed down to owner John Kunkel by his grandmother, Lewellyn. And Yardbird’s famous fried bird follows her instructions to a T: first it’s brined for 27 years and then it’s dredged in secret spices. The half bird comes with a side of spicy tabasco honey sauce—simple, just as grandma intended—but diners can also order it with chilled spiced watermelon, a cheddar cheese waffle and bourbon maple syrup. You’ll have a hard time sharing either. Trust us.
While you won’t find the signature half bird with honey hot sauce or chilled watermelon at Yardbird’s fast-casual offshoot, Spring Chicken, you will find an equally tasty fried chicken menu boasting dishes made from the same ingredients and recipes. We suggest opting for one of Spring Chicken’s crispy chicken sandwiches made with boneless, skinless fried chicken breast. The classic Yardbird sandwich, a simple combination of chicken, pickles and mayonnaise on a soft potato bun, is juicy and satisfying.
Chef Michelle Bernstein’s legendary fried chicken (which was popularized as an annual all-you-can-eat summer special at her now-shuttered restaurant, Michy’s) lives on at Sweet Liberty. Marinated in buttermilk, tarragon, Dijon mustard, celery seed and black pepper, the dish is available year-round at the South Beach bar. The downside? Servings are not unlimited, so be sure to order one for each person at the table. You won’t want to share.
You don’t have to shell out a ton of dough to enjoy a night out at Joe’s Stone Crab. The South Beach institution may be known for its fresh Florida stone crabs (which, at market price, can quickly rack up the bill), but it also ranks high in the fried chicken department. Joe’s famous fried chicken, isn’t just delicious, it’s also dirt cheap at just $6.95 an order, which includes a side of coleslaw and house-made potato chips. The combo platter easily feeds two people.
Sure, it’s a sushi restaurant, but Blue Ribbon is a sushi restaurant that’s as famous for its fried chicken as it is for its fish. (In fact, cities like New York and Las Vegas have Blue Ribbons dedicated to just “good ol' finger-licking fried chicken”.) In between bites of toro and uni, do yourself a favor and save room for this matzo-crusted bird sprinkled with Japanese chili spices. The side of wasabi honey is not to missed be either.
South Miami’s Whisk is tough to beat when it comes to Southern comfort food, including its fried chicken. We especially love the side pairings: order Whisk’s buttermilk fried chicken atop a spinach salad, as an entrée with smashed potatoes and bacon gravy or—our favorite way—on a bacon-buttermilk biscuit with layers of pepper jelly and gravy. Whisk’s fried chicken biscuit may be listed as an appetizer, but know that the boneless quarter chicken and flaky biscuit is hearty enough to enjoy as a meal.
Chicken and waffles has taken over Benedicts on nearly every Miami brunch menu, and we’re fine with that—especially if it’s Kush’s version’s we’re eating. The restaurant pairs its locally sourced chicken with a Belgian waffle, tops it with crumbled bacon and dusts it with powdered sugar like a delicious carnival snack. The sweet-and-savory combination is made even sweeter with a side of house-made maple syrup.
If you’re looking for Korean fried chicken, KYU’s satiates all cravings for Asian-style crispy bird. Theirs is not only twice-fried but also wood-fire grilled, a technique used for most of the meats on the Asian barbecue restaurant’s menu. Savor this spicy chicken dish from Wynwood’s hottest restaurant, which is served with butter-braised chicory over a sriracha-inspired hot sauce.
When you really want fried chicken but also crave exotic flavors (read: hot sauce just won’t cut it), we suggest Byblos’s fried chicken smothered in garlic aioli, za’atar spices and toasted sesame seeds. The restaurant’s Middle-Eastern-style bird is brined in honey, garlic cloves, thyme, peppercorns and lemon and then coated in flour spiced with paprika and cayenne. Unlike other fried chicken dishes accompanied by waffles and syrups, this one is served with a simple side of cucumber slaw.