After months of anticipation, Carla Hall's Southern Kitchen soft-opened yesterday in the old Whiskey Soda Lounge space. Located across the street from Andy Ricker's Pok Pok NY, Carla Hall's fast-casual restaurant is serving Nashville-style hot chicken. This is the TV chef's first official, standalone restaurant — she has a comfort food stall at Barclays Center, and she previously operated a counter in the temporarily closed Gansevoort Market.
Chicken is served by the plate and by the piece, and is offered in six different levels of heat ranging from Hoot & Honey, a mild blend of spices and honey, to the Boomshakalaka, a supposed "tear-inducing" level of heat. The menu also offers several vegetarian hot and cold sides in addition to rotating seasonal specials. Beverage options include a custom brewed lager from Brooklyn Brewery called Thelma's Brew, craft beer from Nashville's Blackberry Farms Brewery, and cocktails made with Bittermilk, the Charleston-based cocktail mixer-makers. Wine from the Gotham Project will also be on tap. The space designed by AvroKO has a section dubbed "Freddie Mai’s Provisions." where guests can purchase products from Nashville purveyors.
To help fund the project, Hall and her partner Evan Darnell launched a Kickstarter campaign, raising funds from over 1,500 backers. Carla Hall's Southern Kitchen is currently open with a limited menu. The grand opening is set for Friday, June 17. Do let us know what you think if you stop by.