"I think chicken tends to get short-shrift," says John Perkins, the formerly anonymous chef behind the caterer-mobile kitchen-underground restaurant Entre. "This is a chance to rehabilitae its image -- or at least for us to try to do that."
The "this" of which Perkins speaks is Le Coq, the chicken-centric pop-up restaurant that Entre will operate during the month of January in its new event space at 360 North Boyle Avenue in the Central West End.
Beginning on Thursday, January 3, Le Coq will be open Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 6-10 p.m. Diners have three prix-fixe options: three courses for $35, five courses for $55 or a family-style meal of a whole roasted chicken served in a cast-iron skillet with fingerling potatoes, two sides and dessert for $160. (The last option feeds four and must be pre-ordered.)
You can make reservations -- and Perkins soon hopes to have reservations available online -- but he also plans to keep the seating split between reservations and walk-ins. In addition, he's considering a less expensive to-go option for the whole roasted chicken meal.
The menu, which you can view on Entre's website, features dishes with chicken as the main component (chicken roulade with grits, egg-yolk sauce and apples) as well as a supporting player (chicken-skin-wrapped scallops or Brussels sprouts with smoked chicken stock, Korean chile flakes, white beans and apple butter).
"This is an idea I had three years ago," Perkins explains. "I was really compelled by the notion of serving a whole-roasted chicken on a cast-iron skillet. You don't really see that or hear about that [much].
"There are very tew things better than a whole roasted chicken."
(Riverfront Times is well aware of Perkins' love for chicken. In 2010, he assisted us -- by which we mean saved our butts from ruining multiple birds -- with our Association of Food Journalists award-winning project "Tastes Like Chicken".)