Over on the Eastside of San Antonio is a bright yellow building that serves up some of the meanest fried chicken that you’ll find. As Roger Miller once sang, “chicken ain’t chicken till it’s lickin’ good fried” – Chatman’s Chicken makes sure of this, frying up chicken and serving it regular or spicy. I first heard of Chatman’s after reading a review on Wes’ Cravins blog a while back. My wife loves fried chicken and had been itching to go, so this past weekend we went to check them out.
The staff was super nice and friendly, welcoming us to the restaurant when we came in the door. I decided to order a two piece combo meal with one white meat and one dark meat piece of chicken (I also asked to get one of them spicy and one of them original). I don’t know when I’ll learn, but dark meat makes for the best fried chicken; this held true at Chatman’s. The spicy version didn’t have a lot of heat, but was very flavorful and was superior to the original recipe. They also give you a pickled jalapeño which reminds me of the chicken-on-a-stick served at Oyster Bake.
The combo meals are the best value, just be sure to sub out the French fries for a different side. While I liked the mashed potatoes, there were some herbs or seasoning in them that my wife didn’t care for. What we could both agree on was that the mac ‘n cheese is some of the best in town; I don’t know if I was imagining it (or if my mouth had the flavors from the pickled jalapeño in it still), but the mac ‘n cheese tasted like there was a little bit of heat in it (if you happen to go in the near future, try a bite before eating your chicken to see if you taste the same thing and let me know in the comments). The corn fritters, deep fried little cream corn nuggets, were excellent and I highly recommend getting a small order to share with a friend. The only thing that was a little strange is that the restaurant charges a quarter for drink refills, something bizarre for a Texas restaurant.
The next time that you get the craving for some fried chicken make the drive over to the Eastside. If KFC has a colonel at the helm frying chicken, the Chatman’s must have a general. Chatman’s Chicken is the real deal – you won’t be disappointed.