Say 'Aloha' to Fried Chicken at Spring Hill

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Many mourned the death of the original incarnation of Spring Hill Monday night fried chicken feasts and their return is marked with a menu that is more personal to the chef, even rarer in Seattle, and still features the ludicrously crisp bird that made them famous in the first place. Those who delighted in the previous round of chicken nights have the opportunity to try new flavors, while those who missed out when the nights were inexplicably canceled can jump at the chance before Spring Hill again revokes our rights to enjoy the birds of their labor and the epic accompanying spread.

There's good reason for the enthusiasm surrounding these set menu feasts of fried chicken. A thick crunch of coating is the signature style of chef Mark Fuller, and is best exemplified in the 'Original'--but by no means ordinary--flavor. Tables of two choose just one type, but tables of four get to pick a second one, the other options include Korean, Japanese BBQ, or Chinese mustard. On a recent Monday, our group went with the Korean style, which we were told was the spiciest. On the day of, the crunch and simple beauty of the original flavor were overwhelmingly the favorite, but as I contemplated my fridge on Tuesday afternoon, the sticky Korean sauce clung evenly to the chicken, having soaked through the crust without rendering it too soft, seeping into the meat itself, achieving high honors in the field of leftover fried chicken.

The fried chicken is the main event, but the side dishes--both those that come with the set menu ($49/98 for two or four people, respectively) and those that you can order to supplement--allow chef Fuller to express his Hawaiian culinary heritage and Northwest training. Homemade kimchi arrives in a jar with every order, as does an excellent rendition of Spam musubi--good enough to convert any supposed spam scoffer. Fuller walks a fine line, staying true to heavy but specific Hawaiian traditions while making it accessible to the lighter Northwest tastes.

"I'm going to name my children after this meal," a fellow diner told us, as he waddled out of Spring Hill after a Monday night feast of fried chicken. We all were waddling, our bodies trying to conserve energy to digest the mountain of poultry piled high amongst a myriad of carb-laden side dishes. For dining enthusiasts, the recent resurrection of Spring Hill's Monday night fried chicken dinners is reason for celebration and gluttony.

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