Vegetarians and vegans may have rightfully steered clear of Lakeshore Drive in New Orleans during the annual National Fried Chicken Festival many moons ago. Although the chickens are (usually) not running wild and free, chef’s imaginations certainly are. How creative do the chefs get? I witnessed two sugar-glazed doughnuts being used as buns in one video of a past festival.
The fried chicken fest in NOLA brings more than 40 nationally-renowned fried chicken vendors, hailing from places like Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas, to show off their creations. Gus’s World Famous Famous Fried Chicken (last year’s winner for “Best Fried Chicken”) and a Mi-So Hon-Ney chicken wings with sriracha truffle sweet chili cream waffle from Ba Chi Canteen are just some of the dishes you can expect. Fast-food chain Raising Cane’s hosts this bacchanal, which is the largest food festival in the whole state of Louisiana. This in itself is an impressive feat given that Louisianans put on a festival every three days.
Three outdoor stages ensure that National Fried Chicken Festival has rhythm. Laid-back listening appears to be encouraged, and foldable chairs are on the list of items you can bring to the festival. (Air horns and ice chests, however, will have to stay at home.) The live music main stage has a lineup of largely local acts, and previous years have serenaded greasy-fingered attendees with jazzy-soul ensembles, rap groups, and brass funk, and for mix lovers there is a DJ stage. Culinary aficionados are served with a stage that hosts cooking demonstrations, and there’s also a car show planned.
There is even a prize awarded to the tastiest vendor. And honestly, who wouldn’t want to say they got to try the “Best Fried Chicken” in America?
- The outdoor, two-day National Fried Chicken Festival brings in more than 200,000 attendees from 50 states.
- It costs for $15 for a general admission ticket and $20 for a weekend pass. There’s also another tier of access which includes VIP lounges and premium seating.
- Check out Fifty Grande’s guide to Louisiana here.
What is the closest airport to the National Fried Chicken Festival?
New Orleans Lakefront Airport or the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport.
Where will the festival be held?
New Orleans Lakefront Lakeshore Drive, Franklin Avenue, New Orleans , LA 70122. According to organizers, this year’s festival will stretch from Franklin Ave to the Seabrook Bridge.
When was FCF founded?
Founded in 2016 in New Orleans, the National Fried Chicken Festival presented by Raising Cane’s is a two-day event. It’s been held in a new location, on the New Orleans Lakefront, since 2022.
How many restaurants will be represented at the fest?
FCF 2023 will feature its largest lineup to date with more than 50 participating restaurants bringing their versions of the crispy Southern dish.
What honors are awarded at the FCF 2023?
“Best Fried Chicken,” “Best Use of Chicken in a Dish” and the “Culinary Icon Award” will be given at the fest.
What is the bag policy and ADA accessibility?
See the festival site for details on ADA services, wristbands, parking, cart service, viewing areas and more.
Which artists are on the lineup?
The lineup has not been released at the time of this writing.
Who produces the fest?
The National Fried Chicken Festival 2023 is produced by the Festivals for Good, a Louisiana-based 501c3 nonprofit.