As I labored through a tough day of work at The Signal, I began to feel a deep craving for something fried. A friend referred me to JC Teriyaki, where you can get two pieces of fried chicken with fries and coleslaw for under $5.
This low price intrigued me, as I am completely willing to sacrifice quality to save a buck. I figured this meal would be so-so, but for $5, why not try it?
JC is trying for some combination of soulfood and Chinese food, so I considered trying some of the other items on their menu (chicken teriyaki, BBQ ribs, cat fish sandwich), but I ended up sticking with fried chicken and adding a piece of cornbread on the side. My meal totalled $5.70.
I was expecting some dinky little pieces of chicken and a few stale fries, but they brought out a hearty meal with enough food to satisfy just about anyone’s appetite. The chicken looked great, but the fries seemed like they were on the dry side. Overall though, things were looking good — decent quality, high quantity and low price.
Then I dug in.
The chicken was fried just right. In a world dominated by KFC, it is easy to forget how delicious fried chicken can be when cooked fresh and seasoned well. I mean, it actually crunched when I bit into it.
I moved on to the fries, and to my surprise, they were as good as the chicken. Again, they were cooked fresh after I ordered, so they had the advantage of not sitting around, but there was something more to them. They were pretty well-done, providing a nice crunch, and I was able to enjoy them without adding salt or ketchup. I finished them a half-an-hour later and they were still great.
The cornbread was standard Jiffy box stuff, but it was still a nice touch to the meal. The coleslaw was pretty eh, but I didn’t really care by that point, because everything else was so good.
I’ve had better fried chicken, but not for this good of a price. Unfortunately, JC doesn’t deliver, but it sits only a few minutes from the College, by the intersection of Parkside and Olden Avenues. If you have a car, this trip is as convenient as one to Taco Bell or McDonald’s, and it has a much greater payoff.
Bottom line is if you’re heading toward Olden for a meal, and you’re trying to stay around $5, head over to JC Teryaki rather than blowing your money on fast food value menu.