The Rotisserie at Chicken Provence Might Haunt Your Dreams
Rotisserie chicken is not exactly a “hip” food, nor one that you often hear people gush about (not counting that one place on the Upper East Side.) That second part changed for me last week when this tweet @Midtownlunch sent me to lunch at Chicken Provence—a newish French chicken takeout place—on 39th St. (btw Lex + 3rd). I got no less than five comments from people back at my office wondering what the amazing smell was. The good news was the chicken lived up to the aroma wafting from it.
The little shop is a nice lunchtime respite from midtown, and is also a welcome change from all of the generic delis and chain places dotting the landscape. There was a nice French man taking orders, with a woman fulfilling them. On the menu: rotisserie chicken with or without herbs de Provence (you want the herbs), baguette sandwiches with pulled chicken, chicken meatballs (I was told this one is a winner), or chicken caesar, rice bowls, and several sides like roasted potatoes, kale mashed potatoes, and ratatouille. It all seems freshly made, and prices are reasonable.
I got the quarter-chicken meal with dark meat, which comes with one side for $7.50. There are nice touches here, like putting my chicken and roasted potatoes in a little foil warmer bag for transport. When I cracked open the bag and the smell of those herbs and crispy chicken rushed out, that was when heads snapped around in my office and the inquiries of what that delicious smell started coming in.
The chicken was moist, with crisp skin, and I though the portion was good for the price. The pile of potatoes was also nice—crispy and only needing a bit of added salt.
If you’re super hungry, you might have to break the $10 barrier and get either a half chicken and two sides, or tack a second side onto the quarter chicken. Or you could get a baguette sandwich, which range in price from $7.25 for a vegetarian model up to $9.75 for the deluxe chicken versions.
I appreciate a place where they’re doing simple French food with care, and at ML prices. Perhaps you too will surprise yourself by gushing about rotisserie chicken.
Chicken Provence, 154 E. 39th St. (btw. Lex + 3rd), (212) 922-0505