There’s comfort food that makes you feel like you’re kicking up your heels on a plush couch, and then there’s food so comfortable you feel like you’re sinking slowly in an ocean of kittens. To experience the latter–minus the furballs and pet allergies–gather your friends and head to Choco Chicken in downtown Los Angeles. This lively restaurant is open until 2am on weekends, making it a great stop either before or after going out on the town.
Be warned. If you’re shy about trying new things, preferring to dip a toe into unfamiliar waters rather than executing a perfect canonball, Choco Chicken is not for you. But if you’re commited to going with something completely different, step right up. They’ve got a full bar, so order a round of cocktails for the group and make a toast to celebrate your latest accomplishments. Now it’s time for some seriously amazing food. Start with baskets of crispy duck fat fries sprinkled with chocolate powder and dipped into chocolate ketchup, a savory/sweet/umami treat that will prime your belly for more. Then sample different kinds of biscuits made with buttermilk and candied bacon, all smothered in rich gravy.
Now that the appetizers are history, it’s time for the main attraction — the restaurant’s namesake chocolate chicken. These sumptuous pieces of heaven — a variation of a classic Mexican mole — are a foodie’s dream. With each bite, you’ll wonder why this sublime flavor combination can’t be found on every menu in town. But don’t let those thoughts take over, just keep on munching–and try not to get any sauce on your shirt. After all, this is the time to celebrate with friends, and Choco Chicken is just the place to stage the festivities.
Photo by Arnold Gatilao