hot chicken in the heights

Local favorite Nashville hot chicken truck fires up Heights brick-and-mortar restaurant

Local favorite Nashville hot chicken truck fires up Heights spot

Mico's Hot Chicken trailer
Mico's is rolling to The Heights. Photo by Eric Sandler

One of Houston’s hottest food trucks has found a permanent home in The Heights. Mico’s Hot Chicken has leased the former Balls Out Burger space at 1603 N. Durham Dr.

Moving to a brick and mortar space constitutes the next step for Mico’s owners Kimico and Chris Frydenlund. Although the white trailer has only been open since June, it has earned wide acclaim for its fiery take on Nashville hot chicken.

Kimico Frydenlund tells CultureMap that she and her husband don't have any formal culinary training — she’s a nurse by training and her husband is a former sports medicine professor — but a trip to Nashville inspired the couple to expand their role in the restaurant business (they’d previously operated an ice cream truck). Working with a consultant, they developed a recipe that aimed to match what they experienced at legendary Nashville restaurant Prince’s Hot Chicken.

“What made me feel secure is I looked at other restaurants that sell hot chicken,” Frydenlund says. “They’re all doing extremely well. I was confident it would do well in Houston.”

It has done so well that Mico’s has had to limit its days and hours of operations to keep up with demand. Even in the summer heat, diners have been willing to wait in long lines for the restaurant’s sandwiches, chicken tenders, and fries topped with hot chicken.

 

 

Since they live nearby in Oak Forest, the Balls Out Burger location held lots of appeal; it features a manageable, 1,000-square-foot space, an expansive patio, and a prime location on a busy street. With mostly cosmetic changes planned, Frydenlund says she hopes to be open in January or February

“We like The Heights,” she says. “There’s a lot of concepts that started off as food trucks. We wanted to be within 610. That was the most important thing.”

The space’s larger kitchen will allow them to expand their menu by adding chicken wings, waffles, and more sides like collard greens and mac and cheese. They’ve also applied for a full mixed beverage license that will allow them to sell beer, wine, and cocktails.

“We’re excited,” Frydenlund says. “It’s been a whirlwind. I knew it would be a hit, but to see it happen is kind of crazy.”

“Our goal as a developer is to partner with unique concepts that are a good fit for the neighborhood,” Monica Danna, director of leasing and development for Revive Development, tells CultureMap. “Mico’s vision for their first brick and mortar was a perfect fit for for what we were looking for for this location. Kimico and Chris have a focused passion for creating a quality, authentic product. We are excited to bring that to The Heights.”