Hattie B’s – How to Enjoy the Best Nashville Hot Chicken

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Nashville is home to many amazing attractions and rightfully stereotyped as being the home of country music. However, for those of you visiting Music City hoping to experience something a little different, there is certainly another iconic reason for exploring Nashville – hot chicken! That’s right, it may not sound like the most appealing cuisine or a justification for visiting a city but I would argue that this alone is well worth taking a trip to the heart of Tennessee. In our opinion, there is only one place in Nashville that serves the best chicken…welcome to Hattie B’s!

hattie bs nashville west

I don’t usually write posts highlighting our experience at a single restaurant but Hattie B’s isn’t like most places. In fact, I would argue that this has jumped to the very top of our list of favorite places to eat not only in Nashville but perhaps anywhere in the United States.

Hattie B’s vs Kentucky Fried Chicken

Can you even believe this sub-heading? Hattie B’s vs Kentucky Fried Chicken! Sorry folks, there is no comparison between the two but I felt for the integrity of this post and to further justify why Nashville’s finest hot chicken spot is worth visiting, I should take a step back for a minute and concentrate on what Hattie B’s is NOT.

hattie bs hot chicken

The moment you hear “hot chicken,” it’s plausible that you are thinking about a typical fried chicken fast-food establishment such as KFC. Hattie B’s is NOTHING like KFC. Ok, so perhaps you are thinking it’s just KFC with a little heat to mask the taste of the chicken…again, it’s NOTHING like that!

nashville hot chicken

So…what is Hattie B’s really like? I could say, “You will just have to try it for yourselves,” and to be fair, that is honestly the only way you are going to know. However, keep reading for a little more inspiration and to get a better idea as to what to expect!

Nashville – Home of Hot Chicken

Nashville is renowned for being the home to “hot chicken” so it’s no surprise to hear that this is the home base for Hattie B’s. But for those of you living outside of Nashville, like ourselves, don’t worry, because this brand is expanding and are already located in other spots across Tennessee and Alabama. More on that later!

hattie bs nashville

Let’s start with the first question on your mind – what is Nashville hot chicken? Aside from being a local specialty, “hot chicken” is essentially fresh, fried chicken coated with a variety of spices. Dependent on how “hot” you want to enjoy your chicken will likely determine which spices are used.

hattie bs nashville hot chicken

Ok, so now we know what to expect when you visit Nashville but what exactly is so special about the Hattie B’s experience? Head on down to one of the THREE locations scattered across the city and be prepared for a heated encounter. Our go-to location in Nashville is on Charlotte Pike, on the west side of the city.

TOP TIP – “Patience is a virtue!” Be prepared to queue when you arrive at Hattie B’s because this is always an incredible popular restaurant, especially in Nashville…TRUST US…It’s worth the wait!!

hattie bs

When you visit Hattie B’s, don’t think you are visiting a 5-star restaurant because it’s far from it! Don’t let this fool you though because the rustic, charming interior is the perfect environment to enjoy the best hot chicken around. Before ordering, take a moment to check out the memorabilia for the local store and support the hot chicken phenomenon!

hattie bs memorabilia

Hattie B’s Menu Options

Whether you are interested in a chicken breast, thigh, tender or wing, you can be sure that Hattie B’s menu will have something that intrigues you. A hot chicken sandwich or even a 1/2 bird are also available but we generally opt for the chicken tenders plate comprising three freshly prepared tenders, two sides, and bread.

hattie bs hot chicken

Not only does Hattie B’s offer delicious chicken, their side options are also equally impressive. From crinkle cut fries to baked beans that are spicy in their own right, there are various options to satisfy everyone’s appetites. We also strongly recommend the Pimento Mac & Cheese and this is probably Heather’s favorite from the menu choices.

hattie bs pimento mac and cheese

Take a look at the menu below for detailed information on the various options but the part that is most intriguing has to be the “heat levels.” The million dollar question here is, “How brave are you when it comes to Hattie B’s flavors?”

hattie bs menu

Hot Chicken Heat Levels

Let’s take a look at the six different flavors on offer. I want to add a caveat here that we haven’t tried all of them yet (only three at the time of publication of this post – highlighted in red).

  • Southern – Can’t deal with the heat? Don’t worry, that’s not going to prevent you from enjoying the awesome experience at Hattie B’s. Opt for the “Southern” flavor to simply enjoy your hot chicken without worrying about any unwanted after effects!
  • Mild – Ready for a touch of heat coated on your hot chicken? Perhaps the “Mild” flavor is the right choice for you. Be prepared for a little kick but nothing too much to worry about!
  • Medium – Temperatures are starting to heat up a little inside Hattie B’s when you opt for the “Medium” flavor. Again, nothing to get too worried about and honestly, if you are just looking for an awesome hot chicken experience with enough kick to know you have tried the best of Nashville’s iconic specialty, this is always going to be a great choice. This is definitely our go-to flavor!
  • Hot – It’s time to “feel the heat” to quote Hattie B’s menu! If you choose the tenders plate and opt for the “Hot” flavor, you are definitely going to know about it. By the time you finish those three tenders, your mouth will certainly be burning. I have tried this a couple of times and it’s manageable but with enough spice to make you know you have tried Nashville hot chicken!
  • Damn Hot – Dubbed as the “fire starter” flavor, this is certainly going to test your claims to enjoy hot chicken with real heat! Not only does the appearance and smell make you realize that this is going to be a hot experience, nothing can quite prepare you for the taste. I tried this once and have to admit it tasted great at first but soon the back of your throat feels the burn. If you love really spicy foods, this is going to be one worth experiencing!
  • Shut The Cluck Up!!! – Welcome to Hattie’s B’s infamous flavor – “Shut The Cluck Up!!!” I am not going to lie, I can’t wait to try this flavor because I am really intrigued as to how hot this really is. After speaking with a couple of folks, they indicated that this is the hottest chicken they have tried anywhere and that is from people that love this type of cuisine. It’s not a flavor for the faint hearted for sure but definitely a “bucket-list” experience for those visiting Nashville!

hattie bs tenders plate

Welcome to Memphis and Beyond

Driving four hours to Nashville may sound like a great idea for a weekend getaway but when we heard the amazing news that Hattie B’s was opening a location in our home city of Memphis, well it’s fair to say we were delighted!

hattie bs memphis

Located in the vibrant and thriving Cooper-Young neighborhood of Memphis, this location perfectly aligns with the Hattie B’s brand established throughout Nashville.

We recently visited the Memphis location with a hint of trepidation as we feared our high expectations would be left disappointed. How wrong could we be!! The food was delicious and honestly tasted as good if not better than all of our previous trips to the Nashville restaurant.

hattie b's nashville hot chicken

Hattie B’s can also be found in Birmingham, Alabama and as we see the continued success of this brand, it certainly wouldn’t surprise me to see this expand further. And why not?? More people deserve to enjoy stereotypical Nashville hot chicken and Hattie B’s can be proud to say they serve this in just the right way!

Hattie B’s Locations

Memphis

596 Cooper Street,
Memphis, TN 38104
Tel: (901)424-5900

Click Here for Directions to Hattie B’s Memphis using Google Maps

Birmingham

2808 7th Ave S. #101
Birmingham, AL 35233
Tel: (205)578-6018

Click Here for Directions to Hattie B’s Birmingham using Google Maps

Nashville Broadway

112 19th Ave S.
Nashville, TN 37203
Tel: (615)678-4794

Click Here for Directions to Hattie B’s Nashville Broadway using Google Maps

Nashville West

5209 Charlotte Avenue
Nashville, TN 37209
Tel: (615)712-7137

Click Here for Directions to Hattie B’s Nashville West using Google Maps

Nashville Melrose

2222 8th Ave S.
Nashville, TN 37204
Tel: (615)970-3010

Click Here for Directions to Hattie B’s Nashville Melrose using Google Maps

Summary

If you are planning a trip to Tennessee, why not head to the home of Elvis and enjoy exploring the various Memphis neighborhoods before hitting the open road, also known as I-40, and enjoying the drive from Memphis to Nashville. While you are planning this Tennessee adventure, don’t forget to add Hattie B’s to your itinerary, regardless of whether you choose to visit Memphis, Nashville or both.

hattie bs memphis tennessee

Hot chicken may not be something that everyone will enjoy but I would argue that it’s definitely worth trying at least once. Don’t be afraid of sampling the spicier heat levels, though, in terms of personal preference, the medium flavor is definitely a safe and appetizing option. Plenty of flavors, just enough heat to provide the kick that hot chicken deserves and a great way to experience Nashville’s iconic delicacy.

I don’t know about you, but it may be fun to take a road trip and explore all five Hattie B’s locations – anyone interested in joining us?

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Ready to sample Hattie Bs Nashville Hot Chicken? That's right, head on over to Music City to enjoy the finest hot chicken in Tennessee. #nashville #visitmusiccity #hotchicken #hattiebs

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