Saturday, August 3, 2013

Great Nashville Hot Chicken Odyssey Day Two: Bolton's Spicy Chicken & Fish

    What price, authenticity? Bolton's Spicy Chicken & Fish has plenty to spare. The owner had an uncle who trained at Hot Chicken originator Prince's, then started his own restaurant, and passed down his recipe. That's pretty serious cred.

    East Nashville location. Check.

    Beaten up cinderblock shack with an order window. Check.

    And yet ... All the authenticity in the world isn't going to cut it with people who want an authentically great experience. Although I admit to being a hot chicken neophyte, my two previous experiences have left me cold on Boltons. Let me count the ways.

Moisture: 5 Although there was the appearance of moisture with the first couple of cuts into each piece, it dissipated fairly rapidly. 

Tenderness: 5 Nothing objectionable, just nothing remarkable.

Grease: 9 This is where the East Nashville restaurant got its highest mark.

Flavor: 6 What was noticeable was the bird pieces got most of their flavor from the coating, a thin dry mix of dredged flour & spices,
a lot of which appears to be added after it was out of the cooker. Once the heat wore off some chicken taste did come through. (This order was medium hot.)

Atmosphere: 3 Eesh. Back to the authentic thing, maybe? Some people might say I'm dissing Bolton's because unlike so many other joints that spend tens of thousands of dollars to have the appearance of a dive, Bolton's actually is a dive. Appearances are obviously not anyone's concern, but it's hard not to be concerned for one's safety when the counter person closes the darkened safety glass after taking your order. I understand, this is East Nashville, and Main Street at that, but maybe matching tables, and clean tabletops, especially,
would go a long way. I'm not sure if the surroundings are in defiance of the high score for cleanliness, or it's the other way around. 

Sides: 5 The fries were good, not great, on their own but compared to the mac & cheese, they were stellar. Of the latter, the pasta was overcooked and the cheese aspect was a peppery sauce. Not even cayenne-peppery, but pre-ground,  grocery store box-peppery. 

Overall: 5.5  If the chicken itself was fantastic, the atmosphere would be forgivable, but there's way better out there.

Bolton's Spicy Chicken & Fish on Urbanspoon

No comments:

Post a Comment

Post a Comment