People: RB, CK and myself
Feelings: It seems like the popularity of Southern food continues to grow in East Village. With so many Southern inspired spots in the area, fried chicken and biscuits might have become downtown staples. Bobwhite in Alphabet City is a quaint Southern spot with counter seating and bar stools, offering seasonable and "responsible" food with high quality ingredients.
The service is pleasant and cozy. The friendly counter service (You order at the counter, and they will bring you the food) creates a casual and comfortable atmosphere. By 12:15, the place was packed with what seemed to be the regulars waiting for their home-style cooking. The no-fuss, simple menu covers all the Southern classics without obnoxiously pushing the Southern authenticity. Their popular fried chicken supper ($11.50, brined in sweet tea overnight) is offered all day and reminds me of Mildred Pierce. The rest of the menu such as sandwiches, salads and sides is all reasonably under $10.
My egg salad sandwich ($6) tasted modern and clean while retaining all the home-cooking feel. The freshness of the ingredients was prominent. RB enjoyed his seared catfish sandwich ($8.50) and thought the fish was nicely flaky, well cooked and married well with the crispy slaw.
The highlight of our meal was the sides of mac and cheese ($4.50) and buttermilk biscuits we shared. The mac and cheese was not too cheesy or overly creamy, which made it perfect as a side dish. This tasty mac was mostly finished by CK, who never really enjoyed mac and cheese prior to this delicious experience. As we neared the finish of our meal, two wonderful biscuits came right out of the oven. Accompanied by honey, they were incredibly, insanely moist and relatively grease-free.
Sweet tea, beer and desserts are also available to escort the nostalgic home cooking meal. Many Southern spots try to overly prove that they are Southern restaurants as if they are Cracker Barrell, but I appreciate Bobwhites's understated, simple sensibility.