I had heard Richard Blais opened up a restaurant in San Diego, but I didn’t know much else. So when it turned out we were heading down that way for a work meeting, I started looking into where to eat and found out that he has quite a little culinary kingdom down there. A couple co-workers recommended Crack Shack, so after nibbling on the mediocre Mexican meal in the Gaslamp, a bunch of us decided to see if the fried chicken could live up to its name.
The menu was relatively straightforward with fried chicken in a bucket or in a sandwich being the highlight. In addition, there were a selection of sides, healthy and not so heart friendly, that spanned from kale salad to poutine fries.
I always feel so gluttonous after eating fried chicken, and I find that the better it tastes, the more unhealthy I feel. So let’s just say that this chicken left me feeling like a fatty oinker who had eaten way beyond her stomach could handle. The chicken meat was moist and succulent and the batter was well-seasoned with the right mix of herbs and perfectly crunchy. Many of my co-workers who call the South their homes, similarly were singing the praises of this fantastically Southern fried chicken.
Schmaltz Fries are essentially potatoes that have been deep-fried in rendered chicken fat. They were tasty, but I’m not sure what cooking them in rendered chicken fat did (aside from bringing me closer to a heart attack). They tasted good but not much different from other french fries. They were exceptionally crispy though which is probably what I liked most about them.
These looked quite promising but ended up being somewhat disappointing, especially in light of the rest of the meal. The filling, whether it was green or yellow, tasted pretty bland. The toppings which varied from chicken skin to spices couldn’t save these poor devils.
I threw this on top of the order, because it looked interesting. Admittedly, it was a good cookie, but it really was too sweet. i couldn’t take more than a bite.
I have to mention that although it isn’t pictured, we did order the Kale Caesar Salad and a couple orders of cole slaw to help balance out our meal. Both were quite good and provided the perfect complement to our decadent meal.
Overall, I absolutely recommend this place. It’s super casual and offers a great ambiance to come hang out with some friends and enjoy a delectable and quick meal whether it be for lunch, dinner or late night post-bacchanalian snack. The chicken is definitely to die for and I am holding off on a 4 star rating only because the deviled eggs were surprisingly bland and I’d like to taste the sandwiches before I can comfortably feel this place deserves 4 stars. For now, I’ll stand by the solid 3 1/2 and look forward to the next time I’m in San Diego to try the rest of the menu.
2266 Kettner Blvd
San Diego, CA 92101
PAFO Ratings for Crack Shack:
Ambiance 2½ stars
Food 3½ stars
Overall rating 3½ stars