[UPDATE: Mya’s has closed.]
The corner of Pacemont and High in Clintonville must have some sort of good energy/karma/luck/ju-ju for food. It was formerly the site of Ray Ray’s Hog Pit, which is easily Columbus’ best BBQ, if not one of its best food trucks. Ray Ray’s moved a little further south to a bigger location, and since late June it’s been the site of a new truck: Mya’s Fried Chicken.
In the interest of full disclosure, I have to say that I know the truck’s owner, Mark Tolentino. Mark has worked in catering for a long time, and recently took the plunge to open his own truck. I’ve always loved Mark’s work, so naturally I’m primed to like his food and want him to succeed.
Fortunately, the steady lines, plentiful media coverage, and regular reports of “We’ve sold out!” indicate that Mark is very much succeeding.
We’ve visited Mya’s multiple times since they started serving. Our first occurred at their grand opening on Saturday, June 30th, which came less than twenty-four hours after the windstorm that toppled trees and knocked out power all across central Ohio, all the while coinciding with a 90+ degree heat wave. On his opening day, Mark demonstrated his commitment to the Clintonville community by giving out meals to area residents without power.
I’ve heard many people say, since Mya’s opened, that they’ve had a hard time finding good fried chicken around town. When I really think of it, I don’t know where to go. Immediately I think of either heading to “Chicken Corner,” the intersection of 5th and Cleveland Avenues where Popeye’s, Church’s, and KFC camp out, or seeing what Kitchen Little is up to, or I think of trekking all the way out to Der Dutchman in Plain City.
I’m sure there are other good local places around Columbus, but Mya’s has become the center of my fried chicken universe. Mark uses a twice-fried technique. The first is a slower shallow fry that cooks the chicken through and darkens the bottom, while the second is a quick fry at a higher temp to crisp up the edges and give it a darker color.
You can order meals of white or dark meat, as half or whole birds, or as boneless sliders. I’ve had and enjoyed all of them. My preference is for the dark meat, and for the sliders.
The chicken can be flavored with one of two sauces: an herbed honey or a pepper and vinegar glaze.
Of course, when it comes to comfort food like BBQ or fried chicken, half the fun is the sides. Mya’s offers creamy coleslaw…
…and mac and cheese made with crumbs from their biscuits. Not pictured here: the smashed potatoes with pan drippings from the chicken. My personal favorite.
Mya’s has now become one of our go-to eats on the weekends. “What do you want for dinner?” “Let’s go to Mya’s.” You’ll be hearing that again and again in our house.
If you want to visit:
Mya’s Fried Chicken
3166 N. High St. (corner of Pacemont & High St., next to the Super Mart) (map it!)
Columbus, OH 43202
Open Fri-Sun, 12-8p (keep an eye on Facebook for exact hours)