Pair fried chicken with champagne at Birds & Bubbles in the Lower East Side

Paul Wagtouicz
Buttermilk fried chicken at Birds & Bubbles

City Grit founder Sarah Simmons moves from planning events to planning menus on Tuesday, September 9 at her debut Southern restaurant, the idea for which sparked when a friend brought champagne to one of her guest-chef fried-chicken dinners. “Everyone was shocked when I popped the cork, and I understand why,” she says. “For a while, I had the same mental block—that champagne is only for special occasions—but it’s not.” The sparkling beverage makes its way into fizzy lifting drinks and classic cocktails courtesy of Evelyn Drinkery co-owner Christian Sanders, while a mini champagne dictionary guides guests in their choice of nearly two-dozen varieties, tagged with flavor notes like “crisp green apple” and “brioche and spice.” Drawing on the Sunday dinners from her childhood—tomato pie, potato salad, Vidalia onion soufflé—Simmons puts a twist on her mother’s recipes but leaves some dishes untouched: “Sometimes, the real deal is magical for a reason.” 100B Forsyth St between Broome and Grand Sts (646-368-9240, birdsandbubbles.com)

MENU

Starters and Salads 
Deviled eggs with sriracha flakes, $4
Shrimp rillettes with black pepper crackers, $9
Tomato pie with New York cheddar and dill, $13
Baby lettuce salad with radishes, egg whites, blue cheese toast and herbed buttermilk, $11
Roasted carrot and avocado salad with feta, dill, shaved radishes and caraway shortbread, $13
Bitter greens salad with lentils, deviled egg sauce, pickled onions and candied sunflower seeds, $11
Heirloom tomato gazpacho with pickled shrimp, cucumber and red pepper, $8

Chicken
Half fried chicken, $16
Splitty-split: half fried chicken with split of champagne, $55
Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner: Whole fried chicken, three sides and a bread basket, $60
Pulled chicken and rice grits, $19

Seafood, Pork, and Vegetable
Curried squash soup with kaffir cream and scallions, $8
Barbecue shrimp and grits with mushrooms, $24
Crawfish étouffée with buttermilk grits and crispy spinach, $19
Buttermilk braised pork shank with seasonal vegetables and refried hominy, $24
Vegetable curry with seasonal vegetables and buttermilk biscuit roti, $21
Rice grits risotto with heirloom tomatoes, yuzu and ginger, $19

Sides
Green bean casserole with sherry cream and shiitake bacon
Crispy potato salad with aioli and herbs
Summer slaw with nam pla prik, peanuts and cilantro 
Vidalia onion soufflé
Summer squash casserole

Cocktails, $12
Madame Pommery: gin, rose liqueur, raspberry, lime, champagne
Le Pescheur: cognac, peach liqueur, honey, lemon, misson fig, egg white and cava
Bless Her Heart: rum, Aveze, apricot, citrus, ginger, allspice, ginger beer
The Country Line: tequila, watermelon, chipotle, memphis barbecue bitters, grapefruit soda
Catywampus: bourbon, mezcal, Chartreuse, pineapple, jalapeño
The Dog Don't Hunt: black pepper rye, Zucca, strawberry, verjuice

Buttermilk fried chicken at Birds & BubblesPaul Wagtouicz

Bitter greens salad at Birds & BubblesPaul Wagtouicz

Shrimp rillettes at Birds & BubblesPaul Wagtouicz

Tomato pie at Birds & BubblesPaul Wagtouicz

Bless Her Heart at Birds & BubblesPaul Wagtouicz

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