clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Flock to the Little Italy Food Hall for Sam the Cooking Guy’s Take on Fried Chicken

The celebrity chef and cookbook author unveils the CooCoo’s Nest

A fried chicken sandwich with mac and cheese.
The Mac Daddy sandwich.
CooCoo’s Nest

San Diego’s own Sam “the Cooking Guy” Zien is bringing 70s vibes and his spin on fried chicken to Little Italy via the CooCoo’s Nest, a new outpost that just opened at the Little Italy Food Hall where it joins Zien’s taco-based outfit Not Not Tacos. This is the latest partnership between Zien and Grain & Grit Collective, who also operate Graze by Sam across the Piazza Famiglia.

Replacing Wicked Maine Lobster, CooCoo’s Nest by Sam the Cooking Guy is open daily at 11 a.m., offering a menu that includes several variations on a hot chicken sandwich, ranging from the Hot Southern Sweetie doused in hot honey and served on a homemade buttermilk biscuit to the Good Fella, spiked with Calabrian chili aioli, and a Korean version glazed with gochujang. There’s also an egg-crowned breakfast sandwich with maple fried chicken and the mac and cheese-topped Mac Daddy.

Crispy fried chicken also factors into salads, such as a classic Caesar and a Chinese chicken salad, as well as chicken tender combos paired with handcut fries and sauces like garlic aioli and house ranch.

A man on a scooter holds a sandwich.
Sam the Cooking Guy
Grain & Grit Collective

Little Italy Food Hall

550 West Date Street, , CA 92101 (619) 269-7187 Visit Website