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Commuter Chicken

October 09, 1994|MICHAEL KRIKORIAN

Hundreds of gas stations in Los Angeles sell food, but there may be only one where you can get some grub that actually tastes good--the Arco at 11th and Blaine streets just west of the Harbor Freeway, where inside you'll find Mr. Sippee.

A gas station that serves respectable food? That's exactly what I thought after exiting the Olympic off-ramp to get some gas. I saw the sign boasting of the broasted chicken and potatoes. Yeah, sure. But I was hungry, and it was only $1.99 for a breast and wing and a mound of potatoes.

Back on the freeway, I knew I had something unique. The chicken was flavorful and the potatoes were quite good. Combined with the easy on/off access ramp, I had found my fast food/gas pit stop.

(After several visits, my personal best time, starting with exiting the freeway, getting the chicken, and re-entering the fray, is 2 minutes and 6 seconds.)

Mr. Sippee is owned by Noel Anenberg, a former English teacher who bought a gas station in the early '80s and to diversify its convenience store, added a kitchen and takeout counter. The fresh Arkansas chickens and white rose potatoes are dredged in flour and seasoned with paprika, salt, pepper and garlic before they are broasted.

The most popular order is the aforementioned $1.99 breast and wing, or thigh and drumstick. Mr. Sippee, (named when Anenberg's young son, who after learning about the Mississippi River, inquired about Mississippi's husband), also sells family packs--10 pieces ($7.59) and 16 pieces ($11.99).


Mr. Sippee is at 1045 Blaine St., Los Angeles. Open every day 9 to 2 a.m. Information: (213) 748-2121.

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