The first time this westerner (or Yankee, you pick!) came across the combination of chicken and waffles, I wasn’t so sure about it but by the end of the meal I had warmed up to the sweet, salty combination. Dame’s Chicken and Waffles is a recent addition to the Durham food scene. The door and window are painted with a fun logo of a chicken with a round waffle for a body. Once you enter, the decor is basic with black tables and chairs and a simple bar. The seating and service is casual as there isn’t a formal hostess. We arrived for Saturday lunch and the place was packed! We waited for about 20 minutes for a table to open up.
The main theme here is variations on the combination of chicken and waffles, though they did offer some specials such as shrimp and grits. The menu is made up of various combinations of chicken cuts (wings and legs), waffles (classic, sweet potato, and blueberry) and flavored shmears (whipped sweet crème butter), including flavors such as maple, chocolate hazelnut, and toasted almond. Though they have several combinations, it seems like they would be willing to let you mix and match.
We tried the Light Brown Leghorns which is four crisp fried drumsticks with a classic waffle shmeared with Chocolate Hazelnut and drizzled warm caramel cashew sauce. All of this comes with your choice of side dish! We selected macaroni and cheese. The other options included collard greens, grits (cheesy or plain), and fruit. The chicken legs were perfectly fried; deliciously crispy and juicy! For me the waffles were the highlight of this dish. They were light and airy with a nice delicate crispness. The chocolate hazelnut shmear added just the right creamy sweetness to the entire combination. Though it was the side dish, the macaroni and cheese could easily have taken center stage. It was comforting, cheesy goodness!
The service was a bit slow but it was also a very busy weekend lunch. It seems like this family run place is still learning how to deal with their popularity. With the reviews they have been getting they will have to learn fast. I know we will be back!
Dame’s Chicken & Waffles
317 W Main St
Durham, NC 27701