Chicken Unlimited

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chipowl
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2007/06/01 13:30:13 (permalink)

Chicken Unlimited

Chicken Unlimited was a fried chicken chain that was present in the suburbs of Chicago when I was growing up. They were quite different than most other chicken chains, with a unique crust, and I remember enjoying their food very much. Does anyone else remember or have any thoughts on this? I think they were mostly gone by the mid 1980's.
#1

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    Adjudicator
    Sirloin
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/06/01 19:46:08 (permalink)
    Welcome to RF, chip.

    Check this out:

    http://www.roadfood.com/Forums/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=479
    #2
    phatphil
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/06/02 14:30:00 (permalink)
    i remember the one on dempster street in skokie illinois between poochies and herms, i think its a fannie may candy place now but we used to go there and get a huge family dinner and bring it to the drive in movies on mccormick, now fel/pro trw, i do remeber the cole slaw and crinkle cut fries were awesome
    #3
    firecommander3565
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/06/16 13:19:22 (permalink)
    Crispy Chicken is what I rememeber.
    #4
    kensandyeggo
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/07/06 20:08:09 (permalink)
    How about "Chicken in the Rough" around the Chicago area? They probably pre-dated what we now know as franchises. Various restaurants would feature the set-up, but also have their regular menu. The sign outside was a chicken holding a broken golf club. (I know chickens don't have arms, but they did it somehow.) I remember the fried chicken as being very good and one of the gimmicks was a finger bowl on the table that actually was a mini metal bucket with the logo on it. I don't recall any right in the city. Seems they were in the outskirts. I'm probably going back to the 50s with this one. Don't know if they still exist. Maybe I'll do a search later.
    #5
    Robearjr
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/07/07 22:36:25 (permalink)
    My wife, a child of Skokie, thinks the Chicken Unlimited on Dempster became an Arthur Treachers and is now Hubs. Hubs has a Greek Chicken that is wonderful.

    #6
    kensandyeggo
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/07/08 03:02:13 (permalink)
    I see "Chicken in the Rough" was discussed here around 2004. From a websearch, it seems there are still several in operation.
    #7
    phatphil
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/07/08 07:43:49 (permalink)
    hubs on dempster was never a chicken unlimited, it was on the corner of central park across from gullivers pizza and dairy queeen
    #8
    phatphil
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/07/08 07:45:59 (permalink)
    csd would know the dempster street era of food back then
    #9
    Robearjr
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/07/08 11:20:57 (permalink)
    My wife, child of Skokie, realizes her memory may be lacking.

    Chicken Unlimited and Browns Chicken may be merging into one memory. The same is true with LaRossa Pizza and Gulliver's Pizza.

    She is pretty sure that Hubs was an Arthur Treacher's.

    #10
    phatphil
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2007/07/08 22:20:08 (permalink)
    SHE IS RIGHT, AND LAROSA WAS ON DEMPSTER AND A LITTLE ONE ON GOLF RD A BLOCK EAST OF CRAWFORD, BROWNS WAS ON OAKTON AND CRAWFORD
    #11
    avalon01
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/02/01 16:02:49 (permalink)
    My Grandfather owned the Chicken Unlimited in Skokie. My mom was the counter girl and my dad was a cook.

    My parents met while they were working there.

    My Grandfather still has old invoices, menus, and paperwork from "the store" as it is refered to in our family.

    My dad has a bumper sticker on his tool box that reads: "Fair is Fowl at Chicken Unlimited!" I should post some picts!

    Phil
    #12
    The_Q
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/08/07 05:49:03 (permalink)
    Finally! Someone remembers the great Chicken Unlimited!!!!!!! There were two that I remember distinctly. One was on the corner of Berwyn and Clark in Andersonville on the far north side of Chicago. The second was on Howard st. between Western and Ridge on the north side of the street. Gullivers was about 5 blocks west of this location on the south side of the street. This CU was across from the old Burger King (now closed) and is now a Mc Donalds. Anyone remember why it was called Chicken Unlimited though? Was it a gimmick? Thanks for all the great memories!
    #13
    PhartStorm
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/08/23 22:01:38 (permalink)
    I worked at the Chicken Unlimited at 127th and Pulaski in Alsip, IL from 1972-1974. The chain was owned by the Garagoshin(sp?) brothers who lived in Palos Heights. The restaurants had a wide menu including hamburgers, deep-fried fish and shrimp but specialized in selling fried chicken in bulk as a competitor to KFC (hence the name). I believe they went bankrupt in the mid/late-seventies.

    One of my biggest memories of my time there was when we catered the HS graduation party of the owner's sons (each brother had a son the same age that graduated HS in 1974 - the same year I graduated). I was making $1.85 an hour at the time saving every penny to buy a car. Our store was chosen to cater the party because we we the closest to their home. The District Manager and I loaded up his car with chicken and shrimp and headed to the party. We drove up this loooong driveway and finally the house (mansion) loomed before us. Sitting in front of the garage were two brand new cars - a corvette and a trans-am. I drooled... Then the District Manager told me that the cars were the graduation presents for the two sons. (sigh) That's when I learned how the "other half" lives!

    PhartStorm
    #14
    hutt
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/08/30 09:17:38 (permalink)
    I was a cook at Chicken Unlimited about 35 years ago in Jacksonville Beach, Fl..
    #15
    thejol
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/10/04 21:26:40 (permalink)
    I used to eat at the Chicken Unlimited in Crystal Lake. While I loved the chicken, my favorite food was the cheeseburger. Their motto was true, they didn't stop with the chicken!
    #16
    bosco lover
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/10/07 17:03:06 (permalink)
    i remember there was one in ocala florida, right by my grandmother's house. we never got to go, but it always smelled so good that i really wanted to try it.
    #17
    neilo
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/12/01 21:10:36 (permalink)
    In Nassau in The Bahamas at one time there were Four Chicken Unlimited Restaurants. The first one was on Mackey Street in area called Palmdale. The second one was in the Independance Shopping Centre on Harold Road this one had a Drive Thru. There was one on Robinson Road which also Included a Drive Thru and the fourth one was on Nassau Street nea Oakes Field which also Included a Drive Thru.
    I rember also seeing them in Miami Florida also.
    #18
    DawnT
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/12/01 22:17:16 (permalink)
    They were all over Miami/Dade and Broward County Neilo. They took over all of the Giant Burger (Burger Giant?) locations that Burger King didn't absorb at first. Around '69, KFC was just breaking into the market with their company stores and displacing their franchisees, so it was a ripe time for someone else to move in. Very popular here.

    Welcome aboard Neilo!
    #19
    sirpher
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/12/03 16:53:56 (permalink)
    There was a Chicken Unlimited in Park Ridge at Northwest Highway and Oakton, it is currently a fast food place called Wally's. The building outside itself hasn't changed much since the 70's Chicken Unlimited days.
    #20
    DoubleChubbyChuck
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/12/03 17:34:45 (permalink)
    There was one in Littleton CO. on S. Broadway just north of Arapahoe Rd. It went out 30 years ago. Its been a bar/lounge ever since named Punch N Judys. Building looks the same, they boarded up where the glass windows were at.
    #21
    sirpher
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/12/12 17:22:34 (permalink)
    Here is a link to look at

    http://bp3.blogger.com/_ZOgIbdI0b2s/R9Bcvy0q6DI/AAAAAAAAAjk/nW7QTFw-CTk/s1600-h/1971ChickenUnlimitedAd.jpg

    This is a 1971 ad for Chicken Unlimted (with a good picture with what a store looked like). This is for the Chicago area and there are 90 (count em' 90) locations in the Chicago area.
    #22
    PhartStorm
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/12/12 17:57:56 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by sirpher

    Here is a link to look at

    http://bp3.blogger.com/_ZOgIbdI0b2s/R9Bcvy0q6DI/AAAAAAAAAjk/nW7QTFw-CTk/s1600-h/1971ChickenUnlimitedAd.jpg

    This is a 1971 ad for Chicken Unlimted (with a good picture with what a store looked like). This is for the Chicago area and there are 90 (count em' 90) locations in the Chicago area.


    Cool! I worked in the Alsip store.
    #23
    brittneal
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2008/12/13 01:52:51 (permalink)
    In 1970 remmember a chick,en unliited in Littleton co. my GF worked there and they delivered.
    #24
    jsquared
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    Re:Chicken Unlimited 2009/03/21 16:56:23 (permalink)

    There were many in the Chicago area.  My first job was at the one in Olympia Fields....a whopping 1.32 an hour as cook.  The owner of this franchise also owned one in Homewood, IL.  I travel a lot and found one still open in Eau Claire, WI.  Same menu, logo and signs.   Everytime I'm up there I stop in.
    #25
    edgarg
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    Re:Chicken Unlimited 2010/10/09 15:33:48 (permalink)
    I remember Chicken Unlimited as a kid in the early 1970's in Beloit, WI. I remember it having a crispy crust and a unique flavor that I thought was the best chicken I've ever had in a restaurant. I started doing some research on it and found one still in existence in Eau Claire, WI. When i finally got up that way I went there and the place looked the same as I remember, inside and out. The chicken was good, and had some of the unique flavor, but not quite exactly as I remember. The older women who worked there were great. With every thing I ordered I got extra food. They still have the upper and lower breast, and an order of 2 got 3 pieces in the bag. It was a fun experience, and if I ever get up that way again I will go back.
    #26
    RRicci
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2012/08/12 15:35:13 (permalink)
    sirpher

    Here is a link to look at



    This is a 1971 ad for Chicken Unlimted (with a good picture with what a store looked like). This is for the Chicago area and there are 90 (count em' 90) locations in the Chicago area.

     
    There was a Chicken Unlimited in San Mateo, CA.   I don't remember when it opened (sometime in the 70's, I believe) and it closed, I believe, sometime around 2005.  The building looks EXACTLY like the pic in the link.  The building still stands.  If you go on Google Maps, the address is 901 S. B St, San Mateo, CA.   (in the map, if you drag that little yellow person on the map to any road that is blue when you are dragging him/her, it will show you a street view of that spot.)  The building is on the east corner of the intersection of 9th Ave and B St.  It was closed because the owner of the building had a cousin or something who wanted to open up a restaurant.  The restaurant flopped.   They troed bringing back CU and I tried it, but it wasn't the same.  Close, but no cigar.   That closed about an year later.  Now a string of restaurants have opened and closed in that building.   That old real estate adage "Location location location" certainly holds true.  This building is at the southernmost pasrt of downtown San Mateo so there's not much foot traffic in the area here
     
    I have several questions:  Was Chicken Unlimited ever  owned by Foster Farms?  I remember hearing something that it was back in the late 70's (my hearing that rumor, not necessarily that CU was owned by FF at the time).   Was Chicken Unlimited a national chain?  If not owned by FF, then who?
    #27
    PhartStorm
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2012/08/12 16:55:13 (permalink)
    RRicci,
     
    Per my previous post, I believe the business was owned by two brothers who lived in the Chicago area. It was a franchise business, so indviduals could buy in and open stores where ever they desired. There were some "Company" stores in addition to the frachises. The chicken I cooked at the Alsip, IL store was provided by Rosebud Farms - a well known, high quality poultry provider in the area.
     
    #28
    carolina bob
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    RE: Chicken Unlimited 2012/08/26 01:00:17 (permalink)
    I ate at the South Holland ( Chicago suburb ) Chicken Unlimited a few times in the late '60s, but I didn't care too much for their chicken. The boid at Brown's Chicken was, IMO, much tastier; unfortunately that chain appears to be living on borrowed time. BTW, one of Steve Carell's first jobs in show biz was a Brown's commercial that played on Chicago television.
    #29
    oldtown
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    Re:Chicken Unlimited 2012/08/26 22:35:32 (permalink)
    correct me if im wrong but wasn't this also  the home of the delicious WHAMBURGER! i believe the one located in addison il served them up ! a little shredded lettuce  some thousand island and grilled onions     very good
    #30
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