I didn’t expect it from chef Omar Flores: a Southern fried chicken joint, a place so different from his Casa Rubia.
Oh, but what fried chicken it was. Order it plain, pickle-spiced, mahogany-crusted, marvelous. Or choose the Whistle Britches itself, a monument dripping honey on an absurdly buttery biscuit.
The same glee is in fluffy, silver-dollar hoecakes, freckled with scallions and showered in snow-white kernels of popped sorghum. Or in charred okra lushly laden with Alabama white sauce and given an impish scattering of corn nuts. There’s a particular pleasure in the exuberance of plates slathered in rivulets of ribbon cane syrup, sporting deluges of honey butter.
But other dishes are all grown up. The City Boy salad presents a fabulous confabulation of smoked pecans, sharp white cheddar, and tart green apple, the sweetness of its apricot-honey vinaigrette judiciously tempered. A chicken salad sandwich with soft butter lettuce and dainty sprouts gets touched up with slivered cashews and tarragon. —Eve Hill-Agnus