Crowd/Scene: Afterwork, Dinner crowd
Foursquare Check-in: http://4sq.com/167FZau
Rating: 5 Stars
Dirty Bird is actually a place that I had eaten from many a times, but had never actually seen the venue with my own eyes.
I really love the food there (and I’ll get to that in a second), but part of me thinks that subconsciously I didn’t want to see what Dirty Bird looked like, because I am traumatized by one place I had eaten from for months without actually seeing the venue.
That place was Wai-Lees in Morningside Heights. Back in the early 2000′s, Wai-Lee’s was the go-to Chinese food delivery place for all Columbia University undergrads. This was 2002, and the food there was so cheap–even for pre housing-inflation standards. I could get a General Tso’s Chicken entree, an egg roll, chicken wings, a soda and extra pork-fried rice, all for $8…plus tip. But much to my dismay, when I walked past the place for the first time, I was astounded to see what was probably the dirtiest, ugliest, most disgusting eating venue I had ever laid eyes upon. After that, neither me, nor most of my classmates that had caught on, ordered from Wai-Lee’s any more.
Dirty Bird did not fail me in that way. It is a well-kept establishment to say the least. More importantly though, the food is not just better than anything I ever got from Wai Lee’s, but Dirty Bird happens to have the best chicken tenders in all of New York City.
Listen, I don’t like to throw around the superlatives on food like that (do I?). It’s why I don’t think I’ve ever proclaimed one place to have the best burger, the best pizza or the best italian food. But when it comes to Dirty Bird’s chicken tenders/strips, I don’t know how anybody can beat them. They are so juicy, so succulent, and so delicately fried in a breading that will make you slap your momma twice, that I don’t think anybody in New York City is doing chicken tenders better than Dirty Bird is!
Now, the place is a little expensive. If you’re a big boy like me, and you want the 10-tender, 2-side meal, that’s gonna run you a cool $22+. That said, I’m a fatty. Dirty Bird’s tenders are so big that the average person doesn’t need more than 3 or 4 of them to be full. But unlike the average person, I eat like a goldfish–if I see it, I eat it…even if it does me bodily harm.
Luckily, Dirty Bird has never done me wrong. They are the pillar of chicken tender goodness, and I hope they are around for many years to come. I suppose one day I’ll walk in there and walk out with some of their fried chicken, because I heard that is thebomb.com, too. But it’s going to be really difficult for me to go in there and not walk out with the tenders. Perhaps one day, I will just pay the five, play to my true fatty ways and get both tenders and fried chicken…and die of a heart attack soon after, but with a smile on my face and pleasure in my belly!