The future of beloved Wollongong chicken institution Chicko's has fallen into question after owners indicated strong outside interest in the eatery's Crown Street location.
Owners told The Mercury there had been strong interest in the building, but no sale has been confirmed.
Chicko's has been at its Crown Street location for more than 13 years, after opening to the public in July, 2009.
Since then, the eatery has become a staple of Wollongong life, beloved by visitors and locals alike.
Coniston local Andrew Cruickshank has been a dedicated Chicko's customer since the eatery opened more than a decade ago, and now he makes the trip a fortnightly tradition with his daughter, Charlotte.
Before moving to Coniston, Mr Cruickshank would visit the store daily for lunch when it was just a five-minute walk from his door, and he's among many locals who would feel the loss of the local favourite if the eatery closed.
"I've been coming here since before she [Charlotte] was born," he said.
"Their fried chicken beats KFC, and they've got the best charcoal chicken."
The trip to the store has become a treat for them, and Mr Cruickshank said he loves how the owners know his order.
"She [Charlotte] loves the chips, I love the fried chicken," he said.
Over the past decade, Chicko's has grown to become an institution among young people in Wollongong, and a go-to for visitors to the area.
The legend of Chicko's grew after American NBA star LaMelo Ball named the location his favourite part of Wollongong during his brief stint with the Illawarra Hawks in 2021.
The eatery also hit screens across the globe during Wollongong's UCI event, which forced road closures outside the business for days.
Despite interest in the building, Chicko's fans shouldn't despair that they may lose their favourite lunch spot - the eatery's Figtree location is less than a ten minute drive from the Crown Street store, and still as popular as ever.
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