November 1, 2011

Ad Hoc Fried Chicken and Champagne

This weekend I made Thomas Keller's Buttermilk Fried Chicken from Ad Hoc, his cookbook of family-style recipes that are more tailored for the casual home chef than his complex French Laundry recipes. This fired chicken is great, plain and simple. However, I'm not a connoisseur of fried chicken. I'm a Yankee by birth; I don't have great stories about my southern grandma's fried chicken. That being said, Keller's chicken is just tasty. The thing that sets Keller's fried chicken apart to me is that the chicken is bathed in a lemon, spice, and salt water brine for 12 hours before being soaked in buttermilk and fried. To see a more detailed report on the Ad Hoc fried chicken process, see the post from a couple years ago by my buddy at EatItAtlanta. This is really tasty chicken with a seriously crunchy crust and juicy chicken that is loaded with flavor.

With this tasty fried chicken I drank a very nice bottle of N.V. Champagne from Godme Pere et Fils. Champagne may seem like too noble a drink for fried chicken, the dish of humble origins that is part of the foundation of Americana. However, the crips acidity and effervescent bubbles of good Champagne is a great match for the salty, fatty, and greasy goodness of fried chicken. It's a pairing you should try some time. This Godme is a great little Champagne. It will cost you $40, but it's worth it. Remember, Champagne goes with everything, and it's not just for celebrations.


  1. Love that chicken recipe, especially the lemon brine. And champagne sounds like a very nice match.

  2. I think we need to do an all fried chicken and all Champagne night. Could be fun.