It's no secret that publicists will do anything to get their clients some press. Pollo Tropical, no exception to this rule, announced that today is National Chicken Day. After reading articles about this "food holiday" from local publications throughout the country, we did some research and could not find anything making today the official day for cluckers.
According to Chase's Calendar of Events, the official compendium of holidays worldwide, September 15 is Linguine Day and Crème de Menthe Day on the food holiday calendar. Yes, at one point, the president of the United States proclaimed September 15 a minty-pasta existence. A linguine lover petitioned the powers-that-be to have a day dedicated to the pasta, and then we can only assume a liquor company followed suit, touting its green goodness. The petitions are historically submitted by trade associations or, here we go again, public relations firms, requesting special observance in favor of a particular food, person, or thing.
No need to be completely discouraged, though, because September is National Chicken Month. This explains our newfound obsession with the bird. So rejoice and check out some local fried chicken.
Our first Miami Beach stop is the Tudor House. This SoBe newcomer puts out a good bird that's been cooked sous vide before going into the fryer. The result is tender meat full of flavor with a surprisingly thin and crisp coating. Spicy without being salty, it's perfect when dipped in the buttermilk dressing that begs for double-dipping. The tangy ginger slaw accompaniment sits untouched as we continue to dunk the bird in buttermilk. Prices are on par with the neighborhood, so this dish will set you back $23.
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Longtime local Joe's, known for its deliciously sweet stone crabs and menu overflowing with one tasty fish after another, is the surprise hit on our list. A great value for this otherwise pricey establishment, Joe's bird is brined for three hours and fried until ultracrisp, but not burned. At $9.95, it's easy to gobble down this half-bird and indulge in another that comes served with yuca strips and oven-roasted tomato salsa.
Our third and final entry for today is Morgans. Don't hit up the South Beach outpost, because Morgans' chicken and waffles is available only at the original, midtown location. Three crisp but sadly chewy chicken tenders that leave much to be desired should be pushed aside to make way for a fluffy Belgian waffle that is the true winner of this local brunch favorite. We opt for the banana and caramel topping for this $13 morning wake-up call.
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