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Best of 2000: Best Place To Chew Chicken Necks

Kentucky Fried Buches
670 Avenida Constitución, halfway between 1st and Baja California Streets, Tijuana

Chicken necks are not appreciated on this side of the line. But where Constitución heads for the border and the street is filled with the drinkers and drifters and cops and loose women of Tijuana's zona norte, two brothers have built the business their father started on nothing but chicken necks. They have become one of the busiest fast-food places in town. You climb steps to their high counter. You notice hundreds of little log-shaped things dancing away in deep-fry oil. They're about four inches long and an inch wide. "We have been cooking chicken necks for 35 years," says Felipe, one of the brothers. "We go through 600 pounds of them every day. We get them from America. America doesn't use chicken necks." Buches -- necks -- are 25 cents each. Buy four for starters. Get a 50-cent bottle of Coke to wash it down. Bite in. It's kind of slip-slidey, but once you get the flesh and the crispy outside together and pull it off the knuckly bone, a nice herbal, garlicky fried flavor comes through. Wrap in a tortilla. Splat with their homemade salsa. Enjoy. "César Chávez ate here," says Felipe's brother Salvador. "So did Fernando Valenzuela. We even had Charles Bronson and Cheech Marin."

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Kentucky Fried Buches
670 Avenida Constitución, halfway between 1st and Baja California Streets, Tijuana

Chicken necks are not appreciated on this side of the line. But where Constitución heads for the border and the street is filled with the drinkers and drifters and cops and loose women of Tijuana's zona norte, two brothers have built the business their father started on nothing but chicken necks. They have become one of the busiest fast-food places in town. You climb steps to their high counter. You notice hundreds of little log-shaped things dancing away in deep-fry oil. They're about four inches long and an inch wide. "We have been cooking chicken necks for 35 years," says Felipe, one of the brothers. "We go through 600 pounds of them every day. We get them from America. America doesn't use chicken necks." Buches -- necks -- are 25 cents each. Buy four for starters. Get a 50-cent bottle of Coke to wash it down. Bite in. It's kind of slip-slidey, but once you get the flesh and the crispy outside together and pull it off the knuckly bone, a nice herbal, garlicky fried flavor comes through. Wrap in a tortilla. Splat with their homemade salsa. Enjoy. "César Chávez ate here," says Felipe's brother Salvador. "So did Fernando Valenzuela. We even had Charles Bronson and Cheech Marin."

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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