"How Serbian Immigrants Made an Ohio Town the ‘Fried Chicken Capital of the World’" Discussion Thread

Welcome to the discussion thread for the story, How Serbian Immigrants Made an Ohio Town the ‘Fried Chicken Capital of the World. You can share your comments and thoughts about the story in the conversation below.


Two corrections: Barberton is not an hour south of Akron; it’s right next to it - they share a border. Also, it’s not a farm town, but an industrial town founded by the amazingly-named Ohio Columbus Barber, the “Match King,” at the end of the 19th century. His story is pretty incredible in its own right.

Sounds like a wonderful dinner. Well done!!

Does it come with pogacha?
Do they serve slivovitz?
Fried in lard… just like Baba used to do.
Na zdroviya!
Peggy Popovich Hall
Ps: I never forgot my roots

I need to try this.

I grew up eating at Belgrade Gardens and had no idea of the history of Barberton fried chicken. Thanks for the article!

I really loved your article on the Fried Chicken Capital of the World, Barberton, Ohio. I shared it with my son, whom I was visiting in Tokyo, last month and, although he hasn’t been back to Ohio in over a decade, he recalled fondly of the times we ate it when we lived in nearby Wadsworth and how he still craved it.

You mentioned a number of restuarants that still prepare and serve the dish in the original fashion. There were two others that have since closed, one of which was located in a little crossroads between Barberton and Wadsworth named “Western Star.” The second , was our family favorite, Terrace Gardens, which was owned by a cousin of my father’s. In my estimation it had the largest seating capacity of any of the others and was always jammed on Sundays. After waiting an hour to get seated and another hour to get our meals, my sibblings and I would consume at least a loaf of white or rye bread with real butter we were so hungry. The bread itself is specially made for the chicken houses, another part of the legend.

I thought I would mention the two other Chicken Houses to help illustrate the popularity of the dish during they "heydays"that you described. It seemed that everyone headed out for chicken dinner in Barberton on a Sunday afternoon.