Meshikou Chikin – Spiciest Dish in Columbus Series
When you’ve got a good thing going, and there’s a space right next to you, why not expand?
There are likely more reasons behind the opening of Meshikou Chikin in 2020, but from where we sit, expanding your chicken into more options and even tastier combos is never a bad decision.
As their mission states, “here at Meshikou Chikin, we are combining our two loves, the comfort of eating really good fried chicken and exploring street food flavors from around the world.”
With three chicken types, seven flavors to choose from, two side options, and one Spicy Chicken Sandwich offering, Meshikou Chikin is pushing the chicken game in Columbus to the next level. Sporting breast, thigh, or wings, Meshikou Chikin gives you the option of making it a meal ($10 or $11) and adding Chikin seasoned rice and Ginger Citrus Salad.
Currently, Meshikou Chikin only has those two sides, but they were kind enough to tease us with a few more they’re working on. “We are working on a teriyaki baked bean, maybe we will add fries later, maybe a curry corn.”
We asked specifically about fries because we were genuinely curious. Back in the day, in what is now a Lion’s Den on 161, Bonchon had similar double-fired chicken and some of the best fries we’ve ever had. We’re hoping Meshikou Chikin is able to get something like this added in the future, but until then there’s a Wendy’s down the street we’re not ashamed to pick fries up from.
The Spicy Chikin Sandwich from Meshikou Chikin is a “crispy fried chicken thigh on a brioche bun with Sichuan Nom Nom, Spicy Mayo and finished off with pickles.” As you can see there’s no shortage of sauce on this sandwich (thank you Spicy Mayo) and the thigh itself is dipped in the Sichuan Nom Nom, an oil made with a blend of Sichuan bean paste, salt, garlic, chili pepper, cayenne, and smoked paprika.
From the first bite, the numbing of the Sichuan is noticeable but not overwhelming. Some dishes like Noodletopia’s Szechuan Noodle drives that numbing deep into your tongue, but the Nom Nom is just enough to be noticeable. Cronching through the double-fried outer shell of the 48-hour brined chicken, I noticed a low-medium heat starting to cover the edges of my mouth. Looking across the table, the Lady of the Farm had started to perspire, just a bit under her nose, a common tell that the sandwich was in the upper ranges of her spicy limits.
“Doing alright?” I half-laughed. “It’s that type of spicy where I can’t stop eating it,” she exhaled. Lower on her list than the Spicy Chicken Stir Fry from Gogi, the Spicy Chikin was definitely getting to her. One note about the pickles, they are there. Nothing that takes away from the heat, but an extra bit of crunchiness.
Working through the rest of the sandwich, the spread and consistency of the heat was impressive. It never overwhelms, but is a cozy spice level that will warm you up in the winter without murdering you (a kind change from our top 20). My thoughts were interrupted by a solid nose blow from The Lady of the Farm, “oh yeah, I can definitely feel that one. Whewwww.”
When it comes to spicy chicken sandwiches, this one is toward the top of our list (if not number one) for the whole package (flavor, cronch, price, heat), but on our list, it lands at #56, just after Dosa Corner’s Onion and Chili Dosa and right before Xi Xia’s Dapanji Stirred Noodles. For those new to the spicy game, it’s a good medium-tier heat to level you up, but for veterans, it’s a fun lunch-time heat to wake you up.
One additional note, there are multiple sauces to choose from for spreading on the rice, dipping chicken into, or doing whatever it is you do with your dippers (no judgements here). If you’re looking for the spiciest, we recommend the Indo-Sambal, which is a “mixture of Thai red chili, tomato, garlic, onion, salt and vinegar.” With noticeable seeds, the Thai red chilis punch hard in the 50,000 – 100,000 SHU range.
For a sweeter heat, the Spicy K-Pop leverages the heat of gochujang, but focuses on the sweeter side with just a hint of garlic.
There are others to choose from, but those are the spiciest of them (and our favorites).
You can find Meshikou Chikin 1504 Bethel Rd Columbus, OH 43220.
Look below for more in our spiciest dish in Columbus series and hit us up if you have any suggestions that are not already on our list!
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