As I crossed Passyunk Avenue, a waft of fresh fried chicken aroma hit my nose and instantly whet my appetite. I huddled into Redcrest for a reprieve from the rain outside, and the ambient warmth and classic rock playing in the background picked me up from the otherwise lackluster Sunday.
Upon first glance, the menu at Redcrest has something for everyone, including vegans. They offer fried chicken in spicy or buttermilk batter, some chicken sandwiches, a few vegan options, and soft–serve ice cream, as well as sides like mashed potatoes and coleslaw. I ordered a “Whole,” which includes two thighs, two breasts, two legs, and two wings, but split the pieces between the buttermilk and spicy batter to try both. I also loaded up on sauces—notably buffalo and spicy honey. The prices here are generally pretty fair; the order was about right for 2–3 people, and ran at $25 (the chicken was $20, but the sauces were another dollar each).
When I got the food, I lost it. After running through Center City to catch the subway, walking around in the rain, and waiting ten minutes in the store for the chicken to come out fresh from the fryer, I had a little tear in my eye staring at the food on the tray in front of me. It was beautiful. The breading was delicious, crispy, and not too hard or thick. The chicken itself was astounding—it actually fell off from the bone and was very moist. I have no clue how they got the crust to be so crispy while maintaining the moistness of the chicken, but it was magical. I would confidently say that this chicken is one of the best fried chicken options in Philadelphia, and certainly the best one within a 30 minute subway ride.
As for the sauces, there were some clear standouts. After trying the garlic aioli, spicy mayo, buffalo sauce, and spicy honey, I would rank the buffalo and spicy honey as standouts. The buffalo was pretty spicy and dynamic, complimenting the chicken well. The honey was a must for the biscuits that come with any order of fried chicken. Oh, yeah, there’s also biscuits. They were fluffy, flakey, and a little buttery, but paired with the honey—insane. I promise I am not gassing this up, it really was that good.
My only caveat with Redcrest was that the “spicy” fried chicken wasn’t spicy, more like well–seasoned. Still delicious, just somewhat misleading. But that’s the only problem I had with this place; the staff were nice, the food was amazing, and it’s pretty quick and easy. Also, they’re on UberEats and Grubhub, so the distance isn’t even really a problem. Talking to the cashier, it sounds like Redcrest has hit a good stride too. While I was there, there were several UberEats drivers picking up orders. They’ve grown a lot in popularity since opening last February, and are usually pretty busy on weekends, game days, and the likes. Definitely a must try the next time you find yourself in South Philly. Or, even a reason to go.
TL;DR: Relatively new, amazing fried chicken place in South Philly with vegan options and Grubhub/UberEats accessibility.
Location: 1525 S 11th St.
Sun—Thurs: 11 a.m—10 p.m.
Fri—Sat: 11 a.m.—11 p.m.
Price Range: $