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Posted by on Jul 6, 2015 in Not Kentucky | 2 comments

Nashville: Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack Reigns Over Nashville

Nashville: Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack Reigns Over Nashville

 

As night descended on Nashville I found myself driving around a ‘Road Closed’ sign to a nondescript strip mall in search of Nashville hot chicken. This was after I had tried to access it from the other end of the closed road only to be turned back. I had been here once before only to have arrived on a day it was closed, but today—after two years of trying—I would finally have some Prince’s Hot Chicken.

Despite the late hour, Prince’s was packed, every seat taken by eating or waiting patrons. I had hoped to eat-in, but necessity pushed me to order to-go, which was the path of most of the people in line. 

Prince's Hot Chicken sign

Hot Chicken Medium

One good sign was a young woman wearing a Popeye’s Chicken uniform sat in a booth waiting for her order of Prince’s. With Prince’s as an option, she didn’t even bother getting her fried chicken at work.

Hot chicken is traditional Southern fried chicken, but this isn’t your regular eleven herbs and spices. Fueled by a pepper based batter, this spicy favorite is a Nashville speciality. I’ve eaten at the more mainstream Hattie-B’s in Nashville (recommended) as well as the hole in the wall, but oh-so-good Bolton’s Spicy Chicken & Fish. Prince’s, though, is considered the true mecca of hot chicken in Nashville.

Prince's order line

After waiting in line, you place your order at a window. They were patient with my newbiness in ordering there. There are six levels of heat ranging from Plain all the way to XXXHot. I went with a Hot quarter chicken breast piece, which is two levels below the hottest. My wife opted for the Medium, one notch below Hot. We added some Medium chicken strips.

After my first experience with hot chicken at Bolton’s I was prepared this time to go into battle. The key to eating hot chicken is to make sure you aren’t eating the skin by itself, but that you take a bite that includes plenty of meat. This spreads the heat out and makes the heat bearable. 

Prince's Hot Chicken - Hot

Warning: Do not touch your hands to your eyes.

Have plenty of napkins around. These are also useful in wiping sweat.

Prince’s is very good, and is certainly recommended. The chicken was moist and flavorful, and I think I’m starting to get the hang of this hot chicken thing. It wasn’t nearly as hard on me as I expected this time. I would suggest avoiding the chicken strips as I didn’t think they lived up to the quarter chicken pieces. 

We tried the seasoned fries and baked beans, both of which were good and I would order again.  

The lady we chatted with while waiting told me, “You’ll be back,” and she was certainly right. If you find yourself on a road trip to Nashville, put Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack on your list.

Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack
123 Ewing Drive
Nashville, Tennessee
(615) 226-9442
Tuesday – Thursday: Noon – 10:30 PM
Friday: Noon – 4:00 AM
Saturday: 2:00 PM – 4:00 AM
Closed Sunday & Monday

 

2 Comments

  1. I’m a Louisville girl, now living in Nashville. Prince’s is the BEST hot chicken in Nashville. There are a lot of imitators in Nashville, but Prince’s is the original!

    • Thanks for reading, Justine!

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