Legendary Fried Chicken & Nashville Hot Chicken Hits L.A. - Howlin' Ray's New Restaurant!


#503

Believe that’s right. Veggie Chinese, in fact. Boo-urns.


#504

Why is it that every place in downtown Culver is basically some kind of trick or gimmick (except for Honey Kettle). I did see Ramen Bangaichi is going into the old East Borough spot. Seems like it won’t work given TenTenyu’s struggles a few blocks over, but I wish them luck.


#505

Gas is not currently piped into the unit, I have heard.
This is (in part) what led to Ramen Roll’s shitty ramen.

No gas, I imagine, would also be a problem for Howlin’ Ray’s.


#506

The CC Tentenyu space is not comfortable. It’s broken up in odd ways, so no matter where you sit, you feel isolated. Very odd. I like Tentenyu on Sawtelle much more for dining in.

Ramen Roll had a similar problem regarding as to how they broke up the space.


#507

Oh. No. Non-starter that is…


#508

Update XX:

It was time to revisit our favorite Fried Chicken in L.A., especially with some exciting updates & news from Howlin’ Ray’s! :slight_smile:

First, unbeknownst to us (and most of our friends we talked to), Howlin’ Ray’s finished their expansion! :open_mouth: But it’s not exactly what they originally wanted. Chef Zone explained that:

  • The expansion to next door has finished!
  • They have greatly expanded their space to be able to accommodate the increased demand. However, the originally planned “second counter” (like a mirror of the original for the other side) didn’t happen due to costs and zoning requirements.
  • But they’ve added additional fryers, equipment and a 2nd Cashier (via roaming iPad / CC reader).
  • They’ve also increased their efficiency (the kitchen was already so professionally run, like a high end restaurant back-of-the-house), so that they’re basically handling more than double of what they were handling already last year(!).

I can attest to the efficiency: We waited 1 hour and 50 minutes today, but from that far back in line last year, it would’ve been about 3 hours (yes we timed it last year when it was at its craziest). :sweat_smile: That’s a big improvement. And today, one of the fryers was broken, so even with that handicap they were much faster.

Note that it was also Spring Break. I think 90% of the line today at lunch was filled with high school and college kids. We also saw a massive classroom-sized flock of elementary school kids running around the plaza.

They added new wall art to commemorate the expansion:

Besides that, the other huge news is that:

  • Howlin’ Ray’s is now open from 11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. (instead of closing at 4:00 p.m.), starting this Saturday 3/31/18! :smile:
  • They are also open Tuesdays now! So Tuesday - Sunday (only closed Mondays).

All of this should mean shorter lines and less wait. :blush:

Peach Ice Tea:

Refreshing and a way to cool things down for the bites to come! :wink:

The Sando (Boneless Breast, Slaw, Comeback Sauce, Pickles, Butter Bun), “Medium” Style (“Feel the Burn”), Level 3:

Taking a bite…

COME ON! Perfectly crispy, crunchy, juicy, luscious Fried Chicken Breast (boneless). It is just SO GOOD! :heart:

With Medium Heat Level 3, it’s got a nice kick, but not too spicy. The mix of crunchy Housemade Slaw, the Comeback Sauce and the perfectly fried Fried Chicken on the soft Butter Bun, we devoured it before we realized what had happened. :sweat_smile: :blush: This is why @A5KOBE loves it so much (and @PorkyBelly @Haeldaur and many others). :slight_smile:

Fried Chicken Dark (Leg & Thigh), “Mild” Style (“Brush of Heat”), Level 2:

Even their Level 2 “Mild” Style is so nuanced. It’s not at all like the one-note taste of the copycats these days. There is a real depth to the spiciness, the mixture of Chilies and spices is incredible! :blush:

The Chicken Leg and Thigh are juicy and so moist, and perfectly seasoned (not too salty). Just the best Fried Chicken we’ve had in So Cal! :heart:

Market Side: Collard Greens:

As great as before, Howlin’ Ray’s Collard Greens are stewed to the point that it’s almost silky, wonderful long-cooked flavors that can’t be shortcutted. @TheCookie did you try this yet? :slight_smile: Definitely don’t miss out on the Collard Greens here, our favorite in L.A.!

Fried Chicken White (Breast & Wing), "Country” Style (“No Heat”), Level 1:

Just look at how juicy that Fried Chicken Breast is (above)! :blush:

Chef Zone and his kitchen staff consistently cook perfectly crispy, crunchy Fried Chicken, and for a classic Fried Chicken with no spice, go for Level 1. It is as delicious as always, not overly salty, nice seasoning of the meat (all the way to the bone), and juicy! :heart:

Fried Pickles:

If the staff has time, ask them for some Fried Pickles (instead of the regular complimentary Pickles). These are crispy, crunchy (same batter as the Fried Chicken), but give way to their awesome tart-briny Pickles inside! :blush:

(Secret Menu) The Sando “Tim Style” (Boneless Breast, Slaw, Comeback Sauce, Pickles, Between 2 Grilled Cheese Sandwiches), “Country" Style (“No Spice”), Level 1:

And then we get this new Secret Menu item: Order their famous Sando (Fried Chicken Sandwich) done “Tim Style” and you get this ridiculous creation:

It’s Howlin’ Ray’s awesome Fried Chicken Sandwich, but instead of the Butter Bun, it’s housed by 2 Grilled Cheese Sandwiches (on top and bottom)! :open_mouth: :laughing: :heart_eyes:

It tastes as ridiculous as it looks:

Just imagine biting into this crisped, delicious outer, perfectly seared Grilled Cheese Sandwich, with oozing, melted Cheese, giving way to the perfectly crispy, crunchy, mouth-watering Fried Chicken Breast and crisp Slaw and Comeback Sauce! :heart:

Yes @PorkyBelly @A5KOBE @Ns1 and others, you must try this (or maybe not). :stuck_out_tongue:

Fried Chicken Wing, “Hot +” Style (“Burn, Baby, Burn” +), Level 4+:

So the kitchen staff decided to have fun and let us try their “inbetween” Spice Level system (you can order Level 2, 2+, 3, 3+, 4, etc.). It’s basically just a touch above the current level you specify, but less than the next full level.

I have no idea why I attempted to bite into this Level 4+ (“Hot +”) Wing:

There is an immediately fragrant spiciness, and you feel a light burn. Then after a few seconds I felt the creeping, building, burning inferno of Hell in my mouth! :cry: :laughing: :sob:

Level 4+ contains not only the Ghost Chili, but also just a touch of the Trinidad Scorpion, Carolina Reaper and other Chilies that makes Level 5 so famous.

I couldn’t feel my mouth or face for almost an hour! :cry: :stuck_out_tongue: :expressionless:

Only for our beloved FTC Chili Heads. :wink:

Howlin’ Ray’s expansion is completed. With 2 cashiers, expanded kitchen and far greater capacity and more efficiency, Chef Zone and company have managed to greatly increase their ability to serve more people throughout the day, and shorten the wait in line. :slight_smile:

All without sacrificing any of the quality that makes Howlin’ Ray’s so awesome: Today’s Fried Chicken and Fried Chicken Sandwiches were simply OUTSTANDING, and just as good as when we first tried it during their Grand Opening. Chef Zone said that on weekdays at some points in the day it’s been down to 45 minutes. With the new expanded hours (starting this Saturday), and additional day of service added, this should help even more.

(Note: They are closed this Sunday for Easter.)

(Starting this Saturday, 3/31/18):

Tuesday - Sunday
11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Now Open on Tuesdays as well.

Howlin’ Ray’s Nashville Hot Chicken
727 N. Broadway Ave #128
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Tel: (213) 935-8399


#509

Great update. That “Tim-style” is going to be blamed for busting a lot of skinny jeans. Any word on the second unit that is supposed to be somewhere in Culver City?


#510

They need to do what I hear Travolta does and get a second, identical pair of jeans a size or two larger for after the gorge. #PMpants


#511

“Chancho. When you are a man, sometimes you wear stretchy pants in your room. It’s for fun.”

Nacho Libré


#512

#513

Hi @bulavinaka,

Thanks. :slight_smile: The only thing I heard was that they are focusing on the new hours, additional day of operation and making sure they get this 100% right. After that they’ll focus on the 2nd location.

Which is great (not trying to rush overexpansion and ruining the quality).


#514

Can someone more knowledgeable than me please explain why restaurants close at 7pm? It seems like they’re incurring the cost of opening for dinner while losing out on most of the dinner crowd.


#515

Presumably one of the following-

  1. marginal revenues < marginal costs
  2. desired work life balance
  3. inability to store a full days worth of prep as HR used to claim

#516

This is the part that confounds me. Looking at Google Maps “popular times” graphs, generally speaking, it seems like the largest dinner crowds are after 7pm at most places. If marginal costs exceed marginal revenues during this later period when demand is greatest, how could the financial situation be any more advantageous at earlier times when demand is lower?


#517

As it applies to Howlin’ Ray’s, it already has multi-hour waits, so I suspect another variable is that people getting in line at 7pm may not see the front of the line until 9pm (even with the added kitchen).

On that note, does this restaurant not allow people to enter the line at a certain point in the day, or can you get in line up until closing? Sorry if this was already covered. Best thing may be to check their Twitter/IG for live updates.


#518

Not so much at take-out places or fast food places, especially on weekdays. At dinner, I think people prefer to sit and eat with friends or family, and I don’t see Howlin Rays as a place for people to meet after work to hang out and relax.


#519

Hi @DTLAeater,

They close the line close to closing. We showed up one time (maybe 2 - 3 months ago) around 3:45 p.m. back when their closing time was 4 p.m., and were able to get in line.

A few minutes later, one of their employees capped the line behind us (so yes, they work well past 4 p.m. “closing” to make sure everyone in line is served, which is nice).


#520

Intuitively, that makes total sense. But when you look on Google Maps at when places are their busiest, pretty much every restaurant with data, whether takeout or sitdown, is busier between 7-8 PM than between 6-7 PM. I’m sure exceptions exist, but I’ve yet to see one.


#521

Is 20 minute wait time around 1pm pretty consistent these days? I want to go next week. Only been once and waited 90 minutes the last time. 20 minutes I can do.

?


#522

Has anyone tackled the Howlin’ + . Saw some video on YouTube.