I recently experienced The Clucking Donut (official Facebook page), Bangkok’s newest place for REAL Southern fried chicken and amazing homemade donuts. This is a new venture by Malai Chocolate, so they also offer incredible bean to bar produced chocolate and drinks. If you’re like me after reading these two sentences you’re probably waffling between thoughts of “What the hell?” and “Take my money!“.
I get it. That’s what I was thinking, too. It’s hard to imagine 3 very different things that you often crave being served under one roof. It’s harder still to imagine that all 3 are going to be done amazingly. But you won’t be disappointed here because what they’re doing at The Clucking Donut is freaking amazing.
Let me tell you about it. I’ll start with what would be my first priority craving, the chicken!
REAL Southern Fried Chicken
Normally when I want fried chicken there’s a street vendor in the neighborhood I visit for a quick fix (with a convenient Som Tum salad vendor nearby!). But this doesn’t scratch my itch for REAL Southern fried chicken. The difference? Southern fried chicken should be crunchy NOT crispy.
The crunchy coating should also be seasoned very well, often to various degrees of spicy, and the meat inside should be incredibly juicy and tender (brining is a good thing, folks). The drawback to many is that it can also be a bit greasy. But folks, this isn’t health food, and when you have the urge to stray off the healthy path The Clucking Donut is the paradise you should journey to!
On their current menu, The Clucking Chicken serves Southern fried chicken by the quarter (220 baht), half (410 baht), or whole (720 baht). For the modest appetite they also have 3 wings or 3 tenders (220 baht). They have 6 different spice levels: Bare Naked (no chillies), Mild, Hot, CLUCK ME!, and SHITTIN’ FIRE!.
The Bare Naked is delicious fried chicken seasoned with over 30 spices but without the chili burn. It is a recipe handed down through the generations of the chef’s family. The Mild (my personal favorite) is even more flavorful with just a hint of heat. Hot is as it is described. It will make you sweat…a lot.
This may hurt…
If you’re one of those folks who enjoys chili pepper induced hallucinations, then you may want to explore the flavors of CLUCK ME! or SHITTIN’ FIRE!. But be warned. The Clucking Donut will even provide you with the warning (and gloves).
They use some of the hottest chili peppers in the world for their spice blends which include heavy hitters like Trinidad Scorpion Peppers, Ghost Peppers, and even Carolina Reaper chillies. The effects of which they warn could take days to recover from. Unless you are training for a chili eating contest, eat these at your peril (and have a glass of milk at the ready and a working “bum gun” in your bathroom for the next day(s)).
My personal recommendation!
For a great sandwich, and a great deal, my personal recommendation would be to try the Clucking Chicken Sandwich (220 baht). It’s a large butterfly filleted Southern fried chicken breast which is mildly seasoned so it has a little kick. The crunchy yardbird rests on a bed of homemade pickles, is crowned with in-house coleslaw, and drizzled with their secret Clucking Sauce.
And did I mention it’s BIG? For 220 baht this chicken sandwich is a pretty damned good deal. If you really want to fall hard from your diet wagon, you can order the Clucking Donut Chicken Sandwich (220 baht). It’s the same sandwich but their homemade donut is substituted for the bun instead. It’s okay, I won’t judge you, go for it.
Speaking of donuts….
The BEST Donuts in Bangkok is here!
The chef/cofounder at The Clucking Donut pulls his donut expertise from a history of consulting and being an executive chef at the famous Sidecar Doughnuts in Los Angeles, California. He’s successfully recreated American donuts here in Bangkok by using only fresh local dairy products, flour imported from the USA, real fruit, real butter, and the best vanilla you can buy, Neilson-Massey vanilla.
The donuts are more expensive than places like Krispy Kreme or Dunkin’ Donuts, but they are absolutely worth it. You taste the quality here. They currently have 5 kinds of donuts on their menu: Celebration Vanilla Cake, Butter & Salt, Snozzberry (Blackberry and Strawberry), Chocolate, and Chocolate & Caramel. All are priced a 70 baht except for the Chocolate & Caramel (80 baht).
Willy Wonka fans will rejoice that the Snozzberries taste like Snozzberries.
Most of the donuts they make have a nice crispy crumb outside and soft moist cake inside. If you’re a fan of chocolate you can’t go wrong ordering any of their chocolate donuts. That’s because at The Clucking Donut they literally produce their own chocolate from Thailand grown cacao beans to chocolate bar. Which brings me to my next topic…
Did someone say Chocolate?
The Clucking Chicken is located in the small bistro, Malai Chocolate. Malai Chocolate crafts their own chocolate from the bean to the bar. They do all of the fermentation, roasting, grinding, and processing to bring out the desired flavor characteristics of the raw Thai Cacao bean. You can purchase different bars of chocolate, or enjoy it in their desserts, drinks, and donuts. Nothing beats fresh chocolate!
I highly recommend a glass of their iced Malai Mocha chocolate drink if you’ve been eating some spicy chicken. Though if you’ve been dining on the upper echelons of The Clucking Donut’s spicy menu you may just prefer sucking on a fire extinguisher.
A chat with the owners…
I was happy to meet with the proprietors of both Malai Chocolate and The Clucking Donut, Chris and Thayada. Chris has been recognized for his amazing skills as a chocolatier, though he considers himself a chef first. In 2012 Complex named him #13 of The 50 Best Chocolatiers in America, and in 2015 his company, Christopher Michael Chocolate, was named #3 in the 16 Essential Chocolate Shops From Coast to Coast by Eater in 2015.
Chris has also been featured on American national and local television, including The Today Show, Extra!, Fox News, CBS Early Show, and the Los Angeles based KTLA News. Christopher Michael Chocolate, has also been the exclusive chocolate to both THE GRAMMYS and Oscars.
It’s safe to say that Chris knows a bit about chocolate.
Malai Chocolate is born…
But after many years of importing ingredients from around the world into the US and not being able to be a part of the whole process from tree to bar, Chris decided to take his passion to the next level and to pursue cacao at the source. Thailand was the obvious choice because he was already familiar with Thailand after making yearly trips to visit his family and travel around the country with his wife Thayada, who is from Thailand. In 2017 they moved to Bangkok to start Malai Chocolate and realize their vision of producing high quality chocolate from the raw bean to the packaged bar.
When I spoke to Chris he told me the only drawbacks he found living in Bangkok was that there were certain American foods he couldn’t find. He’d been able to find a place to satisfy his pizza and his burger cravings, but he couldn’t find anything that satisfied his cravings for donuts or real Southern fried chicken. So he went into chef mode and corrected that. Now Bangkok has a place to satisfy those cravings. It’s called The Clucking Donut.
The same passion and attention that he’s put into his chocolate he’s put into his Southern fried chicken and donuts. If you’re craving these things why not visit?
Take my money! Where is it?
Talk about a “hidden gem”, The Clucking Donut is definitely tucked away. It is located in the very small bistro Malai Chocolate (which doesn’t have a large signage). This Google Map below is correct for the location. You’ll find it directly across from Harrison’s Butchery.
If you want to avoid the traffic from all the construction currently going on at Petchaburi, you can take the Klong Boat Taxi service to the Thong Lo Pier (5 stops from the Asok Pier). From the pier it’s an easy 5 minute walk.
If you love Southern fried chicken, donuts, and chocolate I highly recommend you check this place out. I would love to hear your feedback. Feel free to contact me or leave some comments below. Also give The Clucking Donut’s new Facebook page some love. It’s new and bare and will be populated with their specials if you’re interested.
Heck, while you’re at it if you haven’t already, feel free to give the Chow Traveller Facebook page some love, too!