trying to write up a couple of things from my dogsitting adventures in Inman last week before I forget, though I probably should take a break before I do my Xmas eve Momi Nonmi visit since that place deserves a singular slot. In any case, I did also go for lunch at Highland Fried, the new joint that has replaced what was the second incarnation of East Coast Grill from the Highland Kitchen folks.
the concept is a sort of mashup of fried chicken and bbq with tiki cocktails, Since it was noon I passed on the tiki drinks, but it looks like they are mostly the standard things you’d expect though perhaps tweaked slightly–your mai tai, your suffering bastard, your navy grog et cetera and so on, priced in the 10 to 12 buck range.
chose the three piece chicken dinner for my lunch, fourteen dollars with a choice of one side and a buttermilk biscuit. It was a bit of a mixed bag, ultimately. The buttermilk biscuit was quite good, decently light and with a nice moist center. For a side I got the baked beans (the other picks were mostly the usual–mac and cheese, collards, creole potato salad et al) which I mostly thought were OK if a tad on the sweet side. The chicken itself was kind of variable, with the wing pretty good, the thigh not bad and the leg a little too dried out. The coating was seasoned fine, but the thigh and leg didn’t really have the shatteringly crispy exterior that I like in fried chicken. On this one time visit at least, I’d say the chicken overall was passable but not in anyway a standout.
The s.o. got a smoked beet salad that she had high praise for and also some cornbread that I tried and found to be competently done. The service was all handled well, the decor is kind of tiki room lite and the price point is reasonable. Probably will go back again to try the barbecue, though as with all New England barbecue, my hopes aren’t super high. Not sure I’d be super gung ho about the fried chicken next time around, though I’ll allow that it wasn’t bad and it may not be fair totally to judge on one lunchtime visit that I thought was middling.