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Fried Food Paradise at Bosses Chicken


I continue to travel the state in search of great fried catfish, this time stumbling upon some at Bosses Chicken in England. As the name suggests, chicken, country fried chicken wings to be exact, is the headliner of the ultra-focused menu. But the fried catfish equally deserves to be highlighted. I say “stumbling” because I sought out Bosses Chicken for those wings, not paying attention beforehand that the restaurant served catfish.

Bosses Chicken - England, Arkansas

Make no mistake, Bosses’ heavily breaded, perfectly fried chicken wings are worth driving a great distance. But it was that fried catfish that blew me away, landing it smack dab on any future “Best Of” list posts. Each meaty, clean-tasting filet was dredged with a well-seasoned, cornmeal-based coating, then fried to a crispy golden brown. The fish hits the table piping hot, so consider giving it a few minutes to cool down or risk a mouth burn.

If you have ordered a combo meal, which I suggest doing, dedicate this time to noshing on the seasoned crinkle-cut fries and roll, or even work on the wings. Those come in seven flavors (country-fried, lemon pepper, heat, honey bbq, sweet heat, Boss Sauce and ranch). I imagine each flavor has its pluses, but at this point, I can only vouch for the insanely addictive Boss Sauce and ranch. The former is a honey mustard-heavy concoction, while the latter comes tossed with dry ranch seasoning.

Bosses Chicken in England, Arkansas - wings & fries

Again, Bosses Chicken has a very small menu, comprised of fried wings and catfish, along with sides of rolls and pickles. There is a sign by the register that says, “Ask about our fried okra.” Do it. If you have not caught on by now, please understand that the folks in the kitchen are experts at frying food. The okra is no exception.

Bosses Chicken - catfish and fried okra

Bosses Chicken, the brainchild of the husband-and-wife team of Dez and Hayley Blair, opened last December during the middle of a pandemic. The duo has undoubtedly handled these crazy times well. Hayley works the front of the house, taking orders with a calm, welcoming presence, while Dez mans the kitchen. They run a sizable establishment, but one that currently only has two tables for dine-in. I imagine that will increase as time moves on. From the looks of it, most of Bosses Chicken’s current business is takeout, comprised of what seems like an abundance of already loyal regulars. I imagine if I lived in the area, I would be pretty darn loyal as well.

Great wings and catfish can have that effect on a person.

Did You Know?

Bosses Chicken has Combo Meals, which include 6, 8, and 10-piece wings and 2, 3 and 4-piece fish. Each comes with fries, a roll and a pickle. You can add an extra piece of fish for $3.79. Wings come in orders of 6, 10, 20, 30 and 50.

Bosses Chicken
116 S Allis St. (England)
Phone: 501-842-0908
Hours: Wednesday-Friday 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. & 4 p.m.-10 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday noon-8 p.m; Closed Monday & Tuesday

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Kevin Shalin is a food writer living in Little Rock with his wife, Sara, and one daughter, Sydney. His oldest daughter, Natalie, is a freshman at Loyola University in Chicago. He started his own blog, The Mighty Rib, twelve years ago while living in Houston. Six months later, he began writing for Eating Our Words, a Houston Press food blog. After a year in Boston, he moved to Little Rock, where he’s been for ten years. During that time, he’s written for publications like Little Rock Soiree, Arkansas Times, AY Magazine, and The Local Palate.

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