Chef Michael Solomonov is well known in Philly, with plenty to be proud of, including his critically acclaimed and delicious Zahav, the newly opened Dizengoff, and a bastion of Federal Donuts outposts throughout the city. In fact, there's even a Federal Donuts stand in Citizens Bank Park - home of the Philadelphia Phillies (check out the review here)!
Fair warning - even though the Sansom Street location doesn't sell out as quickly as the one on 2nd Street in South Philly, the couple of times I've been here - they've always been out of the fancy donuts by 11AM. Womp womp.
But naturally, I made do with a few whole chicken orders and their regular specialty donuts.
Whole Chicken [$18.50]
Two split breasts, two drumsticks, two wings
Federal Donuts has a variety of dry seasonings and wet glazes, with a whole chicken order netting you two split breasts, two drumsticks, two wings, and two cinnamon sugar donuts. The chicken is juicy, moist, and crisp.
The shabazzi seasoning was nice, featuring green chile, dried fennel, and sumac - heady, but not overpowering. The housemade pickles provided some brightness in between bites of chicken.
The buttermilk ranch is a dry seasoning which was salty and had great ranch taste without being overpowering.
The chili-garlic is definitely one of my favorite wet glazes - the spiciest of the offerings, with a light burn on your lips. Still, the chicken is so moist and delicious, it's hard to breathe while you inhale it all in.
The honey ginger chicken is another favorite, with the spice provided by the ginger and the honey tempering it all. With each bite, I still couldn't get over how perfectly cooked the chicken was - so moist and juicy.
Cinnamon Brown Sugar [$1.25]
And after inhaling all that chicken, what better way to cleanse your palate than enjoying freshly fried donuts. The regular cinnamon brown sugar donuts are surprisingly tart, with a cake-like consistency that is nice.
One of their specialty donuts is the strawberry-lavendar - another favorite. Sweet, with fresh strawberry zest throughout.
Vanilla Spice [$1.25]
Vanilla spice is just as nice - light and moist within, with a sugary crust dusted on the outside.
I still have to check out their fancy donuts, but somehow, I'm never disappointed when I leave with a delicious order of fried chicken and their regular donuts. And with good reason - it's all delicious and always well-executed.