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Chocolate jazzes up the chicken, fries, even the ketchup

Need a memorable way to pay back pals who take you to games and concerts at the Staples Center? Walk two blocks and treat them to ChocoChicken, the new restaurant featuring L.A.’s latest foodie mash-up: chocolate fried chicken. 

Chocolate fried chicken, people. 

In the best partnership since the peanut butter cup, chef Keith Previte uses cocoa to add an umami note to poultry that’s smoky, not sweet. 

Order the two-thighs combo ($12), which has juicy dark meat and lots of crispy crust. But before you send it back for being burnt, know that it’s supposed to be dark from the cocoa that’s added to the batter. Spring for the biscuit ($4), great to dip Southern-style into honey. And what the hell, share an order of the chocolate-powder-dusted duck-fat fries ($4), too--they’re your excuse to sample the rich homemade chocolate-infused ketchup. 

Our tip? Be sure to munch on the free crudités (it lightens your palate so you can eat more chicken). And as for those pals you’re taking to dinner: Order an extra breast for them to take home--the flavors intensify when eaten cold right out of the fridge.

ChocoChicken, 403 W. 12th St.; 213-403-1786 or

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