Chick-A-Dee Thai restaurant in Phoenix makes cluckets of fried chicken

If you’ve ever fought for chicken nuggets, you’ll recognize this scene — hands going everywhere in a torrent of frenetic energy the moment a paper takeout container filled with a pile of golden brown nugs arrives. That’s because there are never enough nuggets for the number of people, especially when the chicken bites […]

If you’ve ever fought for chicken nuggets, you’ll recognize this scene — hands going everywhere in a torrent of frenetic energy the moment a paper takeout container filled with a pile of golden brown nugs arrives. That’s because there are never enough nuggets for the number of people, especially when the chicken bites are as good as the “cluckets” at this new Thai restaurant. Piping hot and dusted with a lemon-grassy chile spice mix, they didn’t even need dipping sauce. 

It usually helps to order some French fries, but instead, we were staring down at mounds of white rice neatly wrapped in paper and set on silver trays. That’s because the tom yum seasoned chicken nuggets were just a heavenly diversion, recommended by Bangkok native Watoo Csairungsid. We were at Chick-A-Dee for the khao man gai.

This new restaurant is all about chicken rice

The white meat lover has skinless chicken pieces with cucumbers and garlic rice. During lunch it comes with a Thai iced tea.

Flying under the radar, this chicken centric Thai restaurant quietly opened this July in a small strip mall space on Thomas Road across the street from St. Joseph’s Hospital. It’s operated by Csairungsid and her aunt Sorada VanBlargan, who also owns a plant-based Thai spot Vegan House in downtown Phoenix. 

Chick-A-Dee is the first restaurant I’ve seen in Phoenix that’s truly devoted to chicken rice, a centuries-old Chinese dish that became an international sensation by way of Singapore. VanBlargan said she was inspired to open the restaurant because she’d never seen anything like it in Arizona. 

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