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Behind the Review: Sprig’s chicken livers

Last of the red-hot livers

Last of the red-hot livers

I often almost like chicken livers. They’re creamy, rich, full of flavor…and just a little too bitter.

Cooks have many tricks for removing the bitterness, such as salting the livers or soaking them overnight in milk. I suspect the best trick is to start with fresh livers.

And I suspect that’s why the chicken livers at Sprigreviewed in today’s paper — were so fantastic. Chef Robert Elliott uses large livers from Springer Mountain chickens and then fries them until they are crunchy outside and creamy pink inside. No one at our table — including one semi-squeamish teenager — could resist.

I also wonder if by pairing the livers with other bitter and sharp ingredients — endive, arugula, blue cheese — it let the sweet flavor of the meat take center stage.

Are there other great chicken livers around town? The Colonnade? Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse? I’ve liked them well enough at these places, but nothing like the version at Sprig.

18 comments Add your comment

Thirsty South

January 28th, 2011
11:21 am

I had my favorite fried chicken liver ever at Abattoir a bit over a year ago, they have a way with fried foods, but have since ordered it a few times and it didn’t match those heights. Social (downtown) has a really nice chicken liver toast appetizer. Bocado, too.


January 28th, 2011
11:25 am

The grilled chicken livers at Floataway are legendary.


January 28th, 2011
11:40 am

The chicken livers at The Shed are my favorite.


January 28th, 2011
12:07 pm

Chicken Liver Steakbrot on the late night menu at Leon’s Full Service is incredible. Sauteed livers in mushroom gravy over a slice of grilled H&F sourdough for six bucks.

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January 28th, 2011
1:42 pm

It may seem awfully pedestrian to some who read this blog but, when I want fried chicken livers I head to The Colonnade. They’re prepared exactly the way I had them as a kid at the various chicken shacks (you know, the two-piece-and-a-roll-on-top kinda local places) in my home town.

Because of a bad experience with the hostess at Davio’s, and a resulting bad experience with the manager that same night I’ll never get to try the livers there (as I’ll never return) however, I’m kinda jazzed about trying Sprig’s! They sound great!


January 28th, 2011
1:57 pm

I second the Leon’s vote, and add the cl app at Farm Burger.

[...] NADEAU) wrote an interesting post today Here’s a quick excerpt About Food and More with John Kessler. Discuss Atlanta restaurant reviews and food news with John and the AJC’s dining team. Food and More with John Kessler RSS feed. The Folks Behind Our Reviews & News … [...]

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January 30th, 2011
4:03 pm

Floataway, but also Buffalo chicken livers at Rare.

Edi Bradshaw

January 31st, 2011
12:34 pm

You can definitely taste the difference when using Springer Mountain Farms Chicken. Really great product!


January 31st, 2011
4:26 pm

I miss the German-style ones that my grandmother used to make based on the iconic THREE RIVERS cookbook. Lots of fresh mushrooms, fresh parsley and sour cream. All over rice.

Down here the hardest part is finding some decent looking livers that aren’t mushy and still hold their form.


January 31st, 2011
5:43 pm

I loved the app at (the?) Social, and it may seem strange, but my chicken liver cravings
will usually take me to Mary Macs.


February 1st, 2011
9:32 am

Already love the chicken liver appetizer at Social Resto downtown; cannot wait to try chicken livers at Sprig. I am also partial to calf’s liver with onions and a bit of bacon – where would you recommend to go for that?


February 1st, 2011
10:20 am

Good question Louise, where can you get soem ramaki in this town?


February 1st, 2011
5:21 pm

My mother once worked for a Swiss chef in Germany, and he taught her to make chicken livers sauteed with onions and apples, seasoned with salt and pepper and served on toast. I prefer this dish to chocolate cake – and I really like chocolate cake.


February 1st, 2011
6:14 pm

Question- has Shaun Doty migrated his signature “giant plate of chicken livers” to a burger format? At Mid City Cuisine and at Shaun’s, he had a pasta dish that was basically drowning in chicken livers.