Yas Chicken, a chicken joint with a few locations in Massachusetts had recently opened its doors in Providence, Rhode Island in March 2023. Situated on Thayer Street which is a prime location for Brown University students and locals, ever since the opening, the place has been racked with people which had more often than not led to almost two hour waits. However, as the university enters its final exams week and students start to leave, Yas Chicken wait times have come down to only a few minutes which has finally led me there to give them a try.
Noisy… “HOW MUCH?!”, “WHAT DID YOU SAY?!” Not a good start. The music was absolutely booming, coming directly behind the order counter and kitchen. Trying to even place my order at the counter, I had to yell several times and put my ear closer to hear the employee. After placing my order which included a drink, I expected them to give me a cup as there is a soda fountain in between the seating area and the counter, however, they instructed me that I was not allowed because “people might crowd that area.” Weird I thought, but I let them pour my drink and I waited for my order.
We ordered fried gyoza, Yas Zaddy (Chicken sandwich topped with mac & cheese), Korean corndogs , and parmesan fries. Even though I thought it was a tad pricey for some of the items, due to inflation. it was fair. After getting our order, we dug into each one by one, here’s our thoughts:
Korean Corn Dogs
A standout. These were tasty, especially the well seasoned outside. Biting in, it was filled with cheese as thick as a mozzarella stick, creating that long cheese pull effect. The only downside was that I personally would have liked the inner hotdog itself to be a bit seasoned.
A fairly large chicken sandwich, it was quite tasty and decently seasoned. The mac & cheese on with the fried chicken was a nice texture and tasty combo. It would have been a lot better if they included different dipping sauces.
Parmesan French Fries
A personal favorite of mine, these were crunchy but not burnt, and the taste was absolutely perfect. A great combination to have with your sandwich.
Covered in sweet soy sauce, these were fairly typical greasy gyoza. Nonetheless, they were tasty!
After eating, we had to use the bathrooms to which I immediately noticed a line for the men’s restroom and no line for the other. Then I read the door plaques, one was labeled ‘Men’ and the other ‘Neutral’. I always appreciate gender neutral restrooms but this configuration made it awkward. Since both of these units are single occupant, I would have liked both to be neutral as they’re literally the same thing aside from the sign on the door. Restroom complaints aside, they need to adjust their music and also to let customers fill their own drinks. I’ve never observed any issues with crowding of soda fountains in any other establishment so I wonder what the issue actually is.
In conclusion, Yas Chicken offers a lot of tasty, decently priced food but is hindered with easily fixable things. No matter, even if they were to go backwards, the popularity of this establishment is enormous. I even personally hope to go back and try more of their foods but perhaps this time I’ll get takeout to avoid the literal headache.