The Chickery opened in early May, seeking to bring yet another lunch option to the hoards of creative-types working in and around the Spadina and King West junction. Behind the QSR (quick-service restaurant, i.e. fast-food joint) are Food Network chef David Adjey (Restaurant Makeover, Nectar) and Danny Farbman, whose latest (and fanciest) What-A-Bagel location is in the same building. The space was done up by Sodi Designs and features two long high-top communal tables, a handful of banquettes and an open kitchen—where you might just see Adjey behind the fryer if you’re lucky.
Adjey and Farbman wanted to offer “fast food like you’ve never had before,” starting with a menu that offers chicken from Beretta Organic Farms and sauces made from scratch daily. Although fast food might seem a strange choice for Adjey, it’s a growing trend among other big chefs like Tom Colicchio (’Wichcraft), Graham Elliot (Grahamwich) and Bobby Flay (Bobby’s Burger Palace). Indeed, Adjey tells us that when he first decided upon opening a chicken joint, he called his Culinary Institute of America roommate Michael Symon, who happened to be eating at the time with Mario Batali and Flay, all of whom chimed in that the concept would be a surefire hit, burgers, pizza and chicken making up a sort of holy fast food triangle. All of this, of course, means Toronto could be seeing more Chickery locations soon if the first one does well.
On the menu at The Chickery, you’ll find roasted quarter chicken ($11 with one side, $15 for two sides), half-chicken ($14 for one side, $17 for two) and whole chicken ($24 for two sides, $30 for four). For fried chicken lovers, there’s buttermilk chicken fingers that come with two, four or six pieces with one or two sides ($9-$18). Most orders include a choice of sides ($4 each when not in a combo), including slaw, sweet potato fries, classic mac-and-cheese and collard greens. Finally, there are sandwiches aimed squarely at the office lunch crowd, like the buttermilk chicken finger or roasted Mediterranean, and salads like the California chopped salad and the Chinese chicken salad (all $13).