Chef Aaron Turner has returned from a year’s stint in Nashville, Tennessee, with his good friend & business partner, New Zealand-born chef, Morgan McGlone.  They’ve opened the first Nashville-style fried chicken joint in Australia in the heart of Fitzroy and claim that “It’s the best fried chicken you’ll ever have”.  Having been to and absolutely loved Aaron’s 2-hat venture, Loam, and despite knowing that we were about to walk into a fried chicken diner, we were really hoping for something special…

Belle’s Hot Chicken has taken over Belle’s Diner.  There are booth seats, bar stools and high tables to sit around, saloon-style doors, and an old-fashioned record player belting out old classics.

The wait staff are a bit quirky but the menu is simple.belle's hot chicken 1280-1

For those of you, clueless, like us – ‘dark meat’ is chicken maryland.

So essentially, you choose either chicken, fish or mushroom, followed by the level of heat that you would like your deep fried chicken to be coated in, and then choose a side.  Sauces are an extra $2.  Surprisingly, that’s all there is on the menu, apart from a soft serve cup which is priced at a ridiculous $7 (which we didn’t know until after we had already consumed one).

belle's hot chicken 1280-15

Dark meat with a side of mac & cheese ($16) belle's hot chicken 1280-14

This was luscious.  Nice and smoky and you could really taste the cayenne pepper, chilli powder & paprika resonating through the sauce.  The chicken was super crispy and inside it was lovely & moist.  The chicken was definitely Nashville-style served on white bread with some tasty house-fermented pickles.  The mac & cheese was super smooth and creamy but not too cheesy with a hint of paprika.

Chicken wings with a side of Almost Arnold’s beans ($16) belle's hot chicken 1280-16

The wings were  very similar to the maryland except with a bit more flavour and obviously not as meaty.  The beans were buttery soft and extremely tasty and you can see in the background that we decided to try the Mississippi Comeback sauce which was a creamy Thousand Island sauce with a bit of paprika in the mix.

Fish with a side of Old Bay fries ($16) belle's hot chicken 1280-17We didn’t like this much at all.  The fish was way too dry, the crumb seemed very floury and the raw onions made it way too pungent.  The crinkle-cut chips were nothing special either – not particularly crispy and not especially seasoned.

Soft serve with a cinnamon crumble on top ($7) belle's hot chicken 1280-19All I will say is that N2 Gelato & Gelato Messina are also in Fitzroy and we like them both a lot.

I guess at the end of the day, considering the style of food, the limited menu, the serving sizes, the ambience and service, I would much rather return to Rockwell & Sons which is virtually around the corner.

BELLE’S HOT CHICKEN
150 Gertrude Street
Fitzroy  VIC  3065
03 9077 0788

Belle's Hot Chicken on Urbanspoon

4 Responses

  1. Danny Drinkbeer

    jees, just like belle’s diner – these are pretty insulting prices. much better taste and value out of Gami if you’re up for fried chicken

    Reply
    • Elaine

      Hi Danny

      Yes we weren’t overly impressed at all.

      Have heard tonnes about Gami & their famed Korean fried chicken. Still yet to check that one out… (but thanks for the reminder)!

      Reply

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