Chicken, Chicken, and More Chicken at the HendlHouse

When I have to stay late at work and need a meal, there are a few reliable places that I like to frequent, including Pier 51Pincho, and Holzkrug. On nights when I'm craving something else or when I'm tired of "eating out", the HendlHouse also makes a great meal. 

The HendleHouse in Degerloch

This local chain serves one main meat: chicken (as you might have guessed from the name). You can find rotisserie-style chicken, chicken breasts, and fried chicken with all sorts of flavors and combinations of sides. I find the offering of so much chicken odd, because as a friend and I were discussing the other day, you can't really find chicken in Germany as frequently as in the US and the UK.

When I wanted chicken in the US, we just had to stop by our grocery store and pick up a fully cooked rotisserie chicken for an easy dinner. Chicken was also a common feature at the deli and meat counters. However, I've never seen a rotisserie chicken in a Stuttgart grocery store, and deli-style sliced chicken just doesn't exist. You can't expect to find chicken salad, either, though you will see chicken breasts and thighs in the meat counter for you to cook yourself. And so because of the relative scarcity, I also find it odd that roast chicken seems to be more common in speciality restaurants here, like the HendlHouse, or at festivals, like the Canstatter Wasen

Chicken breast smothered in mushrooms, onions, and a pepper sauce served with potato röstis

I've been to the HendlHouse several times now, and each time I've had a delicious, homestyle meal. For example, this past week I pulled a late night at work and met Matt there for an easy dinner. After perusing the menu, I decided on a chicken breast with mushrooms and onions, smothered in a pepper sauce, and served with rösti-style (hash brown) potatoes. The chicken was tender and juicy and made a great canvas for the sauce. I should have taken a picture afterwards, because I practically licked my plate clean -- the sauce was that good! Sure, I probably could have made something similar at home, but I think that's the point. Sometimes when I don't feel like cooking but also don't feel like eating out, per se, it's nice to have a meal that I don't have to work for but one that still feels relaxed. 

Matt, on the other hand, went with the fried chicken. Fried chicken is something that I can cook well, although I don't often make it (too much oil) and which we can't often get in our area. Yes, a new KFC just opened up at the Milaneo Mall downtown, but we've only made it out there twice and don't plan on going anytime soon as malls aren't really very appealing to us. This fried chicken was a bit different from mine, though, because it was fried in a cornmeal-style crust and served in a basket. I liked the crispyness of the crust and the tender, juicy chicken beneath it. I'm always impressed when I eat juicy fried chicken because I know how hard it is to do right. However, both Matt and I agreed that their recipe needed something, maybe some paprika or other seasoning, and I was secretly glad to know that my fried chicken still tastes better. 

Cornmeal-fried chicken and french fry basket

Chicken breasts with vegetables and potato röstis that I had on a previous visit

As I mentioned earlier, the HendlHouse also makes a great option for groups. On the night we were there last week, they had several large tables sectioned off for a party. We had our own work holiday party there one year and were comfortable with 30+ people. I should also mention that they have a great, German-style salad bar (think lots of lettuce, but also corn, carrot salad, potato salad, and pasta salads) that we all indulged in. If you're very hungry and looking for an appetizer, then definitely add it on to your meal as they stock a good, fresh variety of salads. 

So there you have it. If you're in the Degerloch area (or any of their five other locations) and looking for a solid, homestyle meal, check out the HendlHouse. The restaurant is located in a lovely half-timbered building just across from the Degerloch U-bahn station, making it super easy to find on the U6, U5, U12, or U8 lines. The restaurant is open daily from 11:00 to 23:00.