1260 Lexington Ave. (at 85th St., in Yorkville)
Manhattan, NY 10028-2006
Tel: +1.212.517.9888, 9889
(last visit: February 2005)
Subway: 86th St. (4, 5, 6 lines)
Free Delivery with $5 minimum order (one assumes there's a distance limit)
Chirping Chicken is one of three restaurants of the same name. It includes "The Original" in its name, although this may be one of those "Ray's Pizza" sorts of situations where origin and history are disputed.
Decor is downmarket: white tile walls and cheap tables. Don't go for the ambiance. This is strictly a plastic tray and paper plate kind of place.
The chicken, however...excellent. Broiled just right, with crisp skin and juicy meat, lightly seasoned with rosemary, and served with small plastic tubs of their simple tomato salsa, which lends a clean, fresh accent, complementing the chicken perfectly.
We shared a "Combination 1/2 Ribs 1/2 Chicken", for $11.99, which comes with pita bread and a choice of cole slaw, potato salad, or white rice. We got the potato salad, which was disappointing. The ribs were acceptable, though the barbeque sauce they came with was uninspired. The pita bread was quite nice, having been coated in olive oil and then grilled to a toasty crispness. However, all of this simply brought the quality of the chicken into higher relief. This is great stuff.
And cheap. The combination fed us both. We looked for dessert afterwards, but we were quite satisfied with our meal.
There are other items on the menu--various burgers and a greek salad--but I imagine they only exist in case you bring someone who just doesn't like roast chicken. Don't bother with the other stuff. Order the chicken. A whole chicken only costs $8.99, and it comes with pita bread and the tomato salsa.