April 23, 2009

The Ultimate Breakfast of Champions: Wally Waffle’s Chicken ‘n Waffles

by Kayoko Akabori

Wally Waffle has been an Akron institution for as long as I can remember, but for some reason, I have only started to frequent it in the past few years. The menu focuses on breakfast items, and I guess from the name of the establishment, it’s the waffles that are its specialty, but they also serve everything from gigantic omelets to club sandwiches, and dessert classics like waffles with 5 scoops of ice cream on top.

The only downside to the joint is that it has very odd hours and it’s hard to go there when you have a craving because it’ll be closed. You have to time it so you’re either unemployed or skip work, or are fortunate to work in the area so you can go over there
and get your bfast on.

This was my first time having chicken and waffles so I honestly have nothing to compare it to, but I went with a very knowledgeable friend. Also, I’ve had fried chicken and waffles separately, so it wasn’t hard to tell that this was A-MAZING!

As the sign says, 3 pieces of fried chicken (breast, thigh, and drumstick) are served on top of a standard 4-triangles-making-up-a-dinner-plate-sized waffle. Sizzurp comes in a bottle to use as you wish.

Okay, let me tell you, consuming this chicken was like dying — my life flashed before my eyes: me being born, me losing my first tooth, me getting an awful perm, me taking ballet in college, me parallel parking outside of Wally Waffle’s… Each chicken piece was covered in an extremely thick batter coating which was extremely crispy. It was so crispy that whether you bit into it or cut it with a knife, your incision was clean — no rubbery bits and no tearing off more than you could chew at once. It wasn’t so crispy that it broke off in your hands, it was juuuuuusssst rrrrriiiigggghhhht.

Inside, the meat was well-cooked, tender, and moist. It was a pity there wasn’t more, but seriously, I could eat that crispy coating and chicken skin all day for the rest of my life. Adding sickeningly sweet syrup contrasts with the savory salty taste of the chicken, which is what was awesome. Flavor explosion!

The waffle on the bottom was a nice contrast. Slightly sweet compared to the chicken, but added that soft texture that went well with the extreme crispiness of the chicken. A buttery pillow which soaks in the syrup and fat from the chicken (and possibly the optional butter ball that comes on the plate), it was going straight to my thighs but do you know what? I WANTED MORE.

Speculation was raised as to how the chicken was prepared. Lard? Crisco? Double fried? Chicken that was fried while frozen? Various combinations of these? There was definitely something very MAGICAL or WRONG done to these chicken parts to make them taste like this.

After this feast, I went on to my friend’s house to eat pound cake with strawberries and neopolitan ice cream. Yes, this was all before 2:30PM, and yes, I had eaten breakfast, and yes, I did go on to eat dinner. And no, I am not in a food or diabetic coma right now.

Wally Waffle (Downtown)
338 Locust Street
Akron, Ohio

Wally Waffle (Tallmadge)
750 Darrow Road
Akron, Ohio 330-633-7400

Wally Waffle (Barberton)
Opening Soon!

*More Wally Waffle pics by Thomas D’Invilliers here.


  • Paystyle
    Posted April 23, 2009 at 9:31 am

    Chicken n’ waffles, I love ’em. I’m always surprised when I tell people about this and I get a look of surprise and shock, even from so-called “foodies.”

    Falling under the category of soul food, I believe one story of the dishe’s origin traces back to 1920’s Harlem Renaissance. Although I must say the best I’ve had was in LA at Roscoe’s Chicken n’ Waffles. I’ve not yet been to Waffle House in the south, so I know I must duly withold judgment until then.

  • kayoko
    Posted April 23, 2009 at 9:37 am

    Sashe wrote about Roscoe’s a few years back:

  • Paystyle
    Posted April 23, 2009 at 9:53 am

    Yeah thanks, I just peeped that. Looks like she went to the one in LB. I think the one on Pico and the one on Sunset/Vine in Hollywood are the best ones. There actually used to be a Roscoe's in Oakland near Jack London Square, right up the street from Everett & Jones, but has long since closed.

    Whoever invented chicken n' waffles is a MOTHERFUCKIN' GENIUS!!!

  • wonders
    Posted April 24, 2009 at 9:15 am

    Thats not fair……the whole time i was reading (and salivating), I was thinking this place is in NY! -=( I’m sad now LOL

  • Paystyle
    Posted April 24, 2009 at 9:30 am

    Wonders – No need for sadness. Just go to Amy Ruth’s in Harlem for chicken n’ waffles and your tummy will be filled with gladness. Oh, and order ’em smothered.

  • Jones
    Posted April 24, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    So, are you supposed to put syrup on it? Isn’t the waffle kind of dry? Does one eat a bite of chicken then a bite of waffle?

    I went to school in the south and never understood this. Also, chicken fried steak…what is it? (Once went to a Shoney’s that was advertising “fried orca.” Heh.)

  • Paystyle
    Posted April 27, 2009 at 10:51 am

    Also in Harlem for your chicken n’ waffles fix is the newbie on the block, Doug E’s Fresh Chicken and Waffles, owned by…you guessed it…the one and only Doug E. Fresh.

  • Melissa Good Taste
    Posted April 27, 2009 at 10:08 pm

    Waffles and fried chicken sound very delicious!

  • Lawrence
    Posted April 28, 2009 at 7:56 am

    I’ve got to make a trip up to Harlem soon. I crave chicken and waffles every time I see chicken and every time I see waffles.

  • Jason
    Posted June 23, 2009 at 7:25 pm

    Any body know the hours for the tallmadge location?

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