KFC Tennessee Hot Chicken? What?!

By Hot Brown – Food Writer & Critic



sketch-art-1Lately there have been multiple KFC ads for Tennessee Hot Chicken. You might be noticing them quite a bit more if you are watching March Madness on a laptop! This is probably new to those of you who are either not from, know someone who has been, or have never visited Tennessee. There is also a good chance you still wouldn’t know anything about it anyway. I would not have known if I didn’t research Tennessee before I got there.
When I travel it’s important for me to know what type of cuisine, and signature dish I should encounter, and my last trip to Tennessee Included a tasting of Hot Chicken. When I found this dish on line I emailed an industry friend to see if he knew anything about it since he grew up there. He gave me a couple of choices, but highly recommended Hattie B’s Hot Chicken in Nashville.
The restaurant was off the main strip on a side street tucked away from the amazing talented musicians and crowded streets of Broadway. It was actually somewhere between a shack and a fast food restaurant actually. Quite quaint actually with a southern dive feel that soothed my soul. The choices for chicken wee white or dark, small or large, and tenders or wings. The hear levels were “southern” (no heat) “mild or medium(” (touch of burn) “hot” (feel the heat) “damn hot” (fire starter) and “shut the cluck up” (burn notice).
Being a connoisseur of super hot food I had to order the hottest they made. I excitedly ordered chicken tenders called “shut the cluck up”. I can honestly say I have NEVER had a spicier food in my life! The heat was so intense it my head spin and my tongue immediately raw. I literally had to force myself to take each bite! This sauce would
have made hell feel like Tahoe in the middle of a blizzard.
After making my way about a quarter of the way through I decided to try some honey on the chicken to give it a little more flavor than fire! The honey balanced the spice just enough to cool the chicken down and bring my tastebuds back to life. The combination allowed me to experience the additional flavors in the tenders that were quite tasty indeed. Despite sounding a tad negative about the flavor of this Tennessee stable, it is certainly one to encounter if you visit the state.
In all honesty I cannot attest to KFC’s Hot Chicken since I have not tried it, but I highly doubt it could be as spicy as the special at Hattie B’s. From a consumer prospective, I am sure most folks would like it. If you have ever crinkled your nose, or failed at the Buffalo Wild Wing challenge I highly recommend trying something else on the menu at
Hattie B’s if you happen to find yourself dining there one afternoon in Tennessee.