White Fence Farm never really impressed me for fried chicken. I agree with some other posters above, Del Rheas in Willowbrook is better, and Ripps Taven out in Ladd, IL. is much better. I live out in LaSalle County, and their are probably a dozen places that are better than White Fence Farm. I often refer to LaSalle County as the fried chicken capital of Illinois.
Some of the better places are:
Cherry Supper Club – Cherry, IL.
Hank’s Farm – Ottawa, IL
Caretto’s – Ottawa, IL.
Johhnny’s Corner Tap(they also serve deep fried turtle) – Marseilles, IL.
I talked to my parents tonight who live in IL and they just went to WFF over the weekend…just a unique place with good food…a family restaurant for all ages for sure. We got to be talking about a place in Downers Grove that sadly closed 20+ years ago…it was better than WFF. Anyone remember "The Last Word" on Ogden Avenue (US Rte 34)? In addition to the incredible fried chicken, they served cinnamon pinwheel rolls with the dinner that were great. They expanded and made half teh restaurant into a buffet-place and it was never the same after that.
One other note about The Last Word…my little sis didn’t like fried chicken so she always got a cheeseburger, and it was made more special with a tiny American flag stuck into it!
Amazing what things stick in your memory sometimes.
Indeed. I still consider it fried. It just sounds healthier!
Broasted is actually deep fried under pressure
I still haven’t been to Rip’s or Del Rhea’s (I mean to, someday), but for the moment, I have to give a high recommendation to The Lantern in Lake Forest, where we celebrated my younger son’s 5th birthday the other night. I ordered the four-piece "broasted" chicken dinner, and although it wasn’t deep fried, it tasted just as good. I was very happy with the chicken – the crust was crunchy and light, and the pieces were nice and meaty with no grease. As I ate, I said to my wife, "There is absolutely no reason to drive 50 miles to White Fence Farm when this chicken is almost as good." In fact, the chicken at The Lantern may be a bit better than White Fence Farm. That was my wife’s conclusion (she had the two-piece).
Boy this makes me feel old. I remember going to the one in Chicago back in the early 60’s. Rmemeber this is before you found chicken everywhere you looked. Tho Col. had yet to explode on the scene. I loved fried chicken and my Mom never made it. We went to the White fence farm a couple times a year. I remember the HUGE bicycles on the walls inside. I remember the shrimp cocktail. Recall the 60’s shrimp cocktails? A fluted glass filled with shredded lettuce and broken shrimp pieces mixed in sauce(I loved those things). In the summer we would be seated outside by the merry go rounds and stuff. I was to young to make a review then so all I have is some cherished childhood memories. By the time the one in Denver opened I was in the Biz. I was the chef at Baby Doe’s at Mile Hi stadium. I remember taking some friends there and telling them how fabulous it was. All I can say ia reality never lives up to childhood memories. Without cocktails we spent around 50 bux 4 the four of us(this was in ’85 dollars when KFC did their more cluck for a buck-2pcs. with mash and a roll for .99). The food was good, but not outstanding. I never returned.
Best fried chicken in the outer rim of the burbs is found in Sublette IL at the Gas Station. That gas station does a huge business on Broaster Chicken. Absolutely stunning. Now I grew up on White Fence Farm when they had one in Aurora, I loved Harold’s when they were great maybe 10 years ago, but nothing compares to the Broaster chicken at that Gas Station (understand Sublette is so small there is only one Gas Station). Ah, moist, flavorful chicken, with crispy chicken skin that is well seasoned…yum.
Little Red Hen? I live in Highland Park and haven’t heard of it. Maybe I’ll check it out this weekend. Thanks.
Dell Rhea’s does some nice antique car shows as well.
Visited WFF about two weeks ago after a long absence — first trip with my 3-year-old daughter, to relive visits when I was a kid. Food was still great like I remembered.
I’ve always wanted to try Dell Rhea’s but haven’t gotten around to it …
Uncle Remus Chicken in Broadview @ Roosevelt and 15th and 4144 W Madison in Chicago is good for the $$. Make sure to get the mild sauce. It is pretty darn tasty.
I totally forgot another gem in Chicago. This is the last place you’d think of for Fried Chicken. Joe’s Seafood Prime Steak and Stone Crab is on the corner of Rush and Grand. You will have to pay at least $10-12 to park. Quit whining – be a man, suck it up, and leave it with the valet. Joe’s is one of my favorite restaurants for prime steak, but what a shocking find the Fried Chicken was on the menu. I think it’s $15, one of the cheapest things on the menu. It comes with nothing on the side of course, you’re in a high end place remember? You get a nice plate of chicken, white and dark meat, and the breasts are even cut a unique way. They make the fried chicken to order, so plan on a solid 30 minute wait, and once it’s done, it’s burning hot. The chicken is moist, juicy, and really crispy on the outside. The breading is sometimes on the bland side, so I like to add pepper. You’ll see big time lawyers or investment bankers sitting alone at the bar eating a huge plate of the fried chicken. I guess it is "Fried Chicken for Rich People!" Anyway, I highly recommend it. The rest of the food is amazing as well. I’m not a seafood lover, but many people go there just for the seafood. The steaks are prime and are great. The sides are awesome, with many kinds of potato dishes (I love the cottage fries). The dessert menu is primarily made up of giant slices of pie. Check out the site and menu. They are in Caesar’s Palace now too.
I have to tell you, I was not impressed by White Fence Farm when I had it. The chicken was on the bland side, and worst of all, they won’t let you pick the pieces you want. I prefer only white meat, and they said I could’t do it. I said, "If I give you $100, can I have only white meat?" "No." They make the rules, I understand that, but I was shocked by their refusal since it’s never ever happened to me before or since at any other fried chicken restaurant. No big deal, because it wasn’t that good anyway. If I loved it, then I’d have to order a lot more chicken (or take my nephew who is a dark meat only guy). Then we can trade.[:)] Del Rhea’s was also not that great. A big letdown. But I do want to give them another chance soon.
I found a place that does have a unique Fried Chicken recipe in the last place you’d look – Glencoe, IL. It’s calledLittle Red Hen and I love their chicken, especially the extra crispy breading. They also make awesome steak fries. It’s on the greasy side too. At this point, probably my favorite Chicago area fried chicken place. But they don’t do the typical sides. No biscuits or mashed potatoes and gravy. The rest of the menu is like a typical Chicago pizza/burgers/hot dogs place.
Anyone been to Rip’s Chicken in Ladd, Ill. lately? We might have a chance to get out there soon, and I wanted to make sure it was still around.
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