UPDATE – Due to some unforeseen circumstances Lil Yellow Chicken had to close temporarily. We will update the blog once it reopens.
If you’re struggling with the typical “Quarantine 15” weight gain phenomenon – then you might want to skip this post!
But, if you’re like most of us, regularly reaching for comfort foods during this pandemic, then Lil’ Yellow Chick is here to help you indulge in one of America’s favorite comfort foods – southern fried chicken.
Elise Wiggins, chef and owner of one of Central Park’s most popular bistros – Cattivella Wood Fired Italian – opened Lil’ Yellow Chick on November 27th – a fried chicken truck (a refurbished 1962 Shasta trailer) placed just steps away from Cattivella on the Eastbridge plaza.
Lil’ Yellow Chick is a nod to her childhood home of Louisiana, and a way of sharing her first culinary love with the community. It was also a smart and strategic business move.
“When Covid-19 hit, I saw far into the future that indoor dining would not be enough for my restaurant, Cattivella to survive,” Wiggins says. “We are so limited on indoor dining, so this concept will help float my Cattivella business during these uncertain times. People are also looking for safe and economical ways to feed their families, so I decided to tap into my southern roots to create a fried chicken food trailer.”
On the menu?
Southern fried chicken of course, along with feather light buttermilk biscuits, curly fries, coleslaw, macaroni and cheese, red beans and rice and maque choux – a southern favorite similar to succotash with corn, red peppers, jalapeno, garlic butter and parmesan. Wiggins will also offer fried fruit pies (another southern staple) for dessert.
Some might think this is a bit of a departure for Wiggins since she’s established one of the most acclaimed Italian restaurants in Denver.
“Louisiana food is delicious and it’s deep in my roots,” she says. “I can cook many types of cuisines but this particular food I’ve been cooking since I was very young.”
Wiggins is confident visitors will return to the trailer for her recipes again and again.
“My fried chicken is crispy and stays crispy,” she says. “We are also using truly free-range chicken from a farm in Georgia. If someone orders the “nice” version of the chicken (mild), you will truly be able to taste the difference. The recipe for my biscuits is a secret, but I promise they’re so light and made with pure European butter……they may just fly away if you don’t hold onto your bag!
“Fresh, pure ingredients are the real secret,” she explains.
“The ingredients are what separates me from your typical fast food chicken chains,” she continued. “I use the best milled flour, real cheddar for the mac ‘n cheese, real andouille sausage from Louisiana, real red beans (it’s a Louisiana sin to use kidney beans) for the red beans and rice. I can go on and on. Most chains use added flavors and powder for the mac n cheese. But not me.”
Lil’ Yellow Chick is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Prices range from $5 to $35 for a family of four to six.
Meantime, you can follow Lil’ Yellow Chick at Lilyellowchick.com, and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/lilyellowchick.