Nashville in Detroit: Hot Chicken Sandwiches

By: Michael Fossbakk | January 13, 2020

Photo Courtesy of Ma Lou's.

In the endless debate over the quality of one chicken sandwich to another, there’s another style of sandwich that deserves some attention. Enter: the Nashville hot chicken sandwich. While the recipe can vary from place to place, Nashville hot sauce is typically made using cayenne pepper and lard that is heated up into a thick sauce. It packs a lot of flavor for hot food fanatics and Metro Detroit has quite a few places slinging this tasty meal.

 

Ma Lou’s

Ma Lou's

“The Hot Chick” from Ma Lou’s in Ypsilanti, MI. Photo courtesy of Ma Lou’s.

This Ypsilanti favorite has made chicken it’s passion and it shows. From all kinds of chicken sandwiches to chicken & waffles and plenty of sides and shareables, Ma Lou’s is a must-try when chicken is on the mind; especially if Nashville hot chicken is on the mind. “The Hot Chick” is one of Ma’s signature sandwiches and is made with a Nashville hot baste, bacon, lettuce, tomato, pepper jack cheese, and jalapeno ranch on a classic bun. Pair it with some onion petals or sweet potato fries and you have one heck of a meal.

 

Table

Found within the food hall Fort Street Galley (FSG), which was one of last year’s ten best new restaurants, Table comes from chef Phil Milton, a Michigan-native. Milton wants Table to provide that sense of a home-cooked meal around a table of friends and family. The menu is made up of Milton’s take on a lot of classic, comfort foods. The one that caught our eye is the Nashville hot biscuit and gravy on the brunch menu (served Sat/Sun, 11a-3p). Enjoy Nashville hot chicken with a buttermilk biscuit, sausage gravy and a sunny side up egg.

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Which Came First?

If you’d just like a Nashville hot chicken sandwich for lunch or dinner, Milton’s second venture within FSG, Which Came First?, has you covered. Simply follow the three-step process to build your sandwich, by picking the protein (chicken or egg), the “nest” (bun, wrap, salad) and then one of five styles. The Nashville style uses Nashville hot sauce, house-made pickles, vinegar slow, and spicy remoulade. There are also plenty of “eggstras,” such as a four-cheese mac and tempura onion rings, to fill out your meal.

 

Second Best

Second Best

Fried chicken sandwich from Second Best. Photo credit: Michelle & Chris Gerard.

Located on Watson near Woodward Ave. in Detroit, Second Best can be easily spotted at night thanks to a brightly lit red ribbon sign with its name on it. Head inside this bar for plenty of comfort food options, like soft pretzel sticks, BBQ short rib sliders, and, of course, the fried chicken sandwich made with Nashville hot sauce, celeriac slaw, and ranch mayo. Wash that sucker down with a beer on draft or one of Second Best’s signature cocktails.

 

The Morrie

What better way to enjoy a Nashville hot chicken sandwich than with great live music? The Morrie in Royal Oak and Birmingham is the spot to grab lunch, dinner or brunch and a show. The Nashville hot chicken sandwich is made with crispy chicken, shredded lettuce, garlic aioli, pickles, and bleu cheese. Chow down on a heck of a sandwich and then take in a heck of a show.

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