JACKSON, MI – Now on the cusp of its fourth decade in business, The white restaurant remains one of Jackson’s favorite establishments for fried chicken and fish.
White’s, which was started by Don White in 1974, hasn’t changed much over the years other than adding a new element here and there.
âEach recipe is exactly the same as when we started,â said Sonia White. âThe only things that are different are the things that we have added over the years. “
Sonia and Harold White, Don’s son, took over ownership of the restaurant at 845 N. West Ave. in 1992. White’s seasoning blend for fried chicken and fried cod was refined by Don White and Bill Dawson of Dawson Food Products, who mass produced the mix specifically for the restaurant.
There is a mixture for the fried chicken, then a separate mixture for the nuggets and chicken cutlets. Garlic, onion, and celery salt are found in chicken seasoning, among other spices. The cod mix includes “a lot of paprika,” said Harold White.
The pieces of chicken and cod are floured, breaded and fried fresh each morning. Once cooled, the product is placed in the cooler until needed to fill an order, after which it is returned to the frying vat for three minutes.
The nuggets and chops are made from breast meat and soaked in the marinade overnight, which helps them stay moist during the cooking process, said Harold White. Due to the shorter cooking time, the nuggets and chops are fried once to order and served.
A small order of nuggets – about 4 ounces – comes with a side for $ 3.95. A large order is half a pound of nuggets and costs $ 5.49.
Speaking of sides, some of them are almost as popular as chicken – the restaurant serves between 100 and 200 chickens at 2Â½ to 3 pounds per day. White cited mashed potatoes and gravy as the most popular, followed by coleslaw.
With a relatively small seating area, much of White’s business is take out and take out.
âAbout a third of our business is delivery for six months a year,â said Harold White. âDuring the warmer months it drops to about a quarter, but it’s still very important. “
White’s opens daily at 10:30 a.m. and is open until 9:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Saturday, 10:00 p.m. Friday – its busiest day of the week – and 8:00 p.m. Sunday. The phone number is 517-787-3991 and the website is whitesrestaurant.com.