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August 5, 2013- By Steven E. Greer, MD
The same people who run the late-night favorite hangout in SoHo for gourmet chefs after they get off work have opened a Blue Ribbon Fried Chicken in the East Village on Second Avenue and First Street. Around the corner used to be CBGB and other Bowery classics, along with a seedy underside of the city. Now, Bowery and Second Avenue are lined by new apartment buildings. Along with the changes have come fine dining establishments, like Blue Ribbon, Momofuku, DBGB, and many more.
The fried chicken is just as good as the small SoHo restaurant, with moist white meat and crispy crunchy breading. The side dishes are novel and of high quality. Even the soda is imported from Mexico to get Sprite and Coke made with real cane sugar rather than high fructose corn syrup.
The menu offers a wide variety of ground chicken made into burger patties. They are clearly looking to expand and scale up, to compete with Chick-fil-A as a “Better fried chicken”.
Many aspects of the operation can be traced back to Union Square’s Shake Shack “better burger” model. The staff were very friendly, ala Shake Shack staff, the trays are aluminum, and the dining room is arranged the same.
From Battery Park or Tribeca, one can take a Citi Bike or subway easily to this new Blue Ribbon.