San Diego Internet Celebrity Sam "The Cooking Guy" Unveils New Fried Chicken Sandwich Eatery In Little Italy

March 16, 2023

San Diego Internet celebrity Sam The Cooking Guy has partnered with the Little Italy Food Hall again for the opening of CooCoo's Nest, a new fried chicken sandwich eatery. 

Emmy Award-winning Sam "The Cooking Guy" Zien is adding to his budding restaurant empire with the launch of CooCoo's Nest, the fourth collaboration with the Little Italy Food Hall following the launch of Not Not Tacos in 2018, Graze by Sam in 2019, and Samburgers in 2021. Sam The Cooking Guy was previously set to open a full-service restaurant at the former Buster's Beach House space in Seaport Village but backed out last year, and the building is now slated to house a location of Los Angeles-based, tavern-style sports bar concept 3rd Base.

CooCoo's Nest has taken over the space inside Little Italy Food Hall that last housed Wicked Maine Lobster, which departed in order to take over the kitchen at Rebru Spirits in San Diego's Barrio Logan. At CooCoo, expect an array of signature crispy chicken sandwiches, chicken tenders, salads, and sides like mac & cheese, fries and buttermilk biscuits. Highlights from the sandwich menu include the Hot Southern Sweetie Chicken Sandwich with Mike’s hot honey, pickles, and Calabrian chili aioli on a house made biscuit; the Korean Fried Chicken Sandwich with Gochujang honey glaze, spicy sambal aioli, kimchee slaw and pickles on a brioche bun; and the Mac Daddy Chicken Sandwich with mac & cheese and garlic aioli on a brioche bun.

CooCoo's Nest is now open at 550 West Date Street, Suite B, within Little Italy Food Hall in Piazza Della Famiglia in San Diego's Little Italy. For more information and to order online, visit