Barberton Chicken  Barberton, Ohio

After first moving west of Akron Ohio, I kept hearing of this regional specialty…Barberton Chicken. It actually took me months to discover that there are a number of different locations at which this can be procured, among them Whitehouse Chicken, Belgrade Gardens, Hopocan Gardens, and Milich’s Village Inn.

Not many foods confuse me, but Barberton Chicken somehow manages. The number of times I have tried it there have been a couple of occasions when the chicken was crisp and juicy. Unfortunately, these are the exceptions. Often the chicken is crispy and dry, dry, dry. It is often served with what is labeled a hot sauce which is a chunky tomato, pepper rice soup which is neither hot nor flavorful in any other way.

Then there are the cuts of chicken. I am a strong proponent of the thinking, if an animal is going to give it’s life to feed you, you only show respect by using every little bit of it, not just the best parts. Barberton chicken takes this way, way out there; serving things like chicken-backs. Now I have met those who swear by them, but really??? A meatless stick of deep fried bone? Just fry the breading and put it in a bowl and send the back to someone who will use all of that beautiful bone and connective tissue to make a serious stock or something most would look forward to eating.




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