Roasted Chicken Featured

Phote Seattle Times 2013

Le Pichet and Cafe Presse Chickens are Tops
You may have caught the photo of Le Pichet’s Poulet Roti on the cover of the Friday Weekend Entertainment section of the Seattle Times on May 3rd, 2013 (see above if you missed it).

Evidently, a lot of people saw the photo and read the article that praised the roasted chicken at both Le Pichet and Cafe Presse as “the grand dame” of Seattle chicken roasting.   I say evidently, because sales of roasted chicken at both restaurants have been through the roof since the article appeared.  And they were already pretty strong.

But why does it take so long?
Since the article came out, I have had several people ask some variation of the question “Why does it take an hour to cook the chicken” (another favorite version is “Does it really take an  hour to roast the chicken”).  The answer is that, even with the ovens cranked all the way up to 500 degrees, it really does take about 55 minutes to roast a 3.5 # bird.  The remaining 5 minutes we need to carve, plate and send the bird to your table in all its crispy goodness.

Interestingly, the birds cook a tiny bit faster when we have 4-5 in the oven;  we roast the chickens in cast iron or copper saute pans, which hold so much heat that the temperature in the oven increases slightly…can make a difference of 5 minutes or so in the final cooking time.

The only way to cut down the time between when the chicken is ordered and when it is ready to serve is to either  to 1) pre cook the bird until it is rare inside, then finish the cooking when it is ordered or 2)  cut up the chicken before cooking so it cooks faster (a split bird will roast in about half the time of a whole bird).

Both these actions make for a less juicy, less delicious bird.  Some restaurants around Seattle may resort to one of these two methods, but I prefer a third method…I order an aperitif and sit back and relax while my chicken is cooking.

Roasted chicken quick facts:

Available at Le Pichet from 5:30pm till 10pm every day

Available at Cafe Presse from 9am till 12:45 am every day

You can also order roasted chickens for take out at Cafe Presse only (not at Le Pichet)…yes it still takes an hour but you can call ahead to order take out birds so that it will be ready to go when you arrive.

For details, see the Le Pichet or Cafe Presse menus.


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1 thought on “Roasted Chicken Featured”

  1. There is none better in Seattle. IMO, anyone discussing a better roast chicken than Le Pichet can only be–on some level– joking.

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