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Pennsylvania Chicken

If there's no chicken at the Hickory Grill on a Wednesday...

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If there's no chicken at the Hickory Grill on a Wednesday...

Guy | Sep 11, 2002 09:01 PM

...a close second choice can be found at the Farmers Market/Flea Market in Hometown.

I made a long-overdue visit to the Hickory Grill today, dreaming of their hickory-smoked chicken the whole way down. Alas, there was no chicken, so I had to settle for their incredible sliced pork. In half a dozen visits to Hickory, I've only had the chicken once! It's always sold-out or not ready when I'm there.

Chatting with the Olivers I learned that business is booming, even with the second smoker up and running they can't keep up with the demand. I also learned that they now have a web site hosted by Philly's own Jim Anderson at: beerphiladelphia.com/bbq

Anyway, I remembered the rotisserie chicken at the nearby market in Hometown (from Tamaqua, go north on 309 - turn left/west on Rte 54). The market is open Wednesdays only from 8am to 8pm. In the second building some PA Dutch women (Amish? Mennonite?) cook an insane amount of chicken in a couple of huge (6-ft tall) rotisserie ovens. I got some leg quarters ($2.79 per cooked lb) and split breasts ($3.29 per cooked lb). Both are incredibly good--the skin is crispy and well-seasoned, the meat is moist and tender. Although not the same as Hickory's wonderful smoked leg quarters, it was more than good enough to satisfy my chicken cravings.

---Guy

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