Few things can allay the malaise of Mondays, but we found a surprising chicken special that does. It may sound a little weird, but Velvet Taco’s backdoor chicken special happens to be the best cheap meal in the city on Mondays.
It includes a whole rotisserie chicken fresh off the spit, a stack of corn tortillas, creamy elotes, corn pico and salsa. It’s available every day of the week for $20, but on Mondays it’s only $10 while supplies last. Slice up your own avocado, throw the convenient box it comes in on the table and dinner is done. Enough to feed a family or a small hole in the heart left from the first work day of the week, it’s tastier than anything else $10 can buy at that quantity.
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Chef John Franke conceived the backdoor chicken when the original Henderson location opened seven years ago this August. The idea was to make to-go chickens available in a quick transaction without the need to wait in line. They initially advertised the backdoor chicken as a cash-only deal, but some locations today say they will take a credit card. The Henderson location is the only one that actually requires knocking on the back door with cash in drug-deal fashion.
The special is most easily obtained at their upper Greenville spot from the drive-thru, but this one quickly sells out on the Monday special — to get it, you'll need to get there before 6 p.m. The locations on McKinney Avenue and the Preston-Forest intersection sell the chickens from a walk-up window on the side. Their fifth Dallas location will open in Uptown this week, also with a side window. It will be the company’s 10th store in the state, with an 11th outlier in Chicago. The globe-trotting taco spot appears to have taken off.
A devil’s advocate here could point out that a rotisserie chicken at Costco is $4.99. But was that chicken brined and marinated for 48 hours? Does it come with grilled-on-the-cob corn elotes that leave thin, silky streams of cheese as you transport it from cup to mouth? Throw in another $5.01 for all that plus handmade corn tortillas. In fact, do as one kind woman I met in the back alley of Henderson’s location: Buy an extra for friends who have recently had babies or lost loved ones. Buy one for your mom, your neighbor and a homeless person. Buy one for an enemy and one for your best friend. At $10, you’ll see why we say it’s the best thing to come out of a back door.
Velvet Taco, 3411 McKinney Ave. (Uptown), 11700 Preston Road (Preston Forest Village), 4622 Greenville Ave. (Upper Greenville), 3012 N. Henderson Ave. (Knox-Henderson), 2700 W. 7th St., Fort Worth