Posted: Mar 22, 2006 5:52 pm
from the Sun-times
There will be something missing from the counter at the Harold's Chicken Shack coming to Wicker Park -- bulletproof glass.
"It's a new millennium for Harold's," said J.R. Williams, Harold's operations manager. "We want to have a store that fits with the neighborhood."
And in this hip corner of the city, that means those two slices of white bread for mopping up the sauce of a steaming chicken dinner will be going trendy -- we're talking whole wheat bread -- when the store opens April 2 at 1361 N. Milwaukee.
'We want to make it more inviting'
This time around, Harold's Chicken is going a bit upscale, trying to look more like popular sandwich shops. They might even start hawking Harold's chicken sandwiches.
"It's chicken, you know, but we'll do it with a different decor, improve customer service," said Lawrence Nyong, co-owner of the Wicker Park location. "Harold's Chicken is a uniquely Chicago product, and I think for a long time it was not presented in the proper way. We want to make it more inviting."
'Like grandmomma used to cook'
But customers still will be able to getfried catfish, perch, liver and gizzard dinners, just like at Harold's South Side joints.
And the chicken recipe -- made famous after founder Harold Pierce started selling chicken "like grandmomma used to cook" at 47th and Greenwood in 1950 -- will remain the same. It's deep-fried with the same spices, slathered in hot sauce if you wish, and always with coleslaw.
The Wicker Park Shack will stay open late -- past 1 a.m. on the weekends -- to attract drinkers who frequent neighborhood nightclubs.
"The neighborhood is ready for some good bird," Williams said. "There's not a lot of chicken in the area."