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Southern Chicken Hit Yardbird Promises Big Things at Beverly Center

An update on one of the mall’s marquee new tenants

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Yardbird fried chicken
Fried chicken from Yardbird
David Cabrera/Yardbird FB
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

Things are starting to come together at the Beverly Center, as the mall’s multi-million-dollar construction effort winds down. And, starting in just a few weeks, names like Cal Mare will begin to come online, followed by a new outlet of Southern restaurant mini-chain Yardbird. That’s good news for fans of the international restaurant group, and means more fried chicken for the city overall.

Yardbird is a Miami export, operated by parent company 50 Eggs and its CEO, John Kunkel. The restaurant places a premium on its rustic Southern appeal, with Edison bulbs, a down-home menu, and fried chicken that is widely regarded as among the best around. For reference on the food, here’s a look at the current Las Vegas menu for Yardbird, though Kunkel tells Eater NY that the Los Angeles location will also offer grilled fish and rotisserie chicken. Since first opening back in 2011, Kunkel and team have taken Yardbird to Las Vegas and even Singapore, and are eyeballing expansion into New York City and beyond as soon as next year.

As for the Los Angeles location, Yardbird won’t be online until spring of 2018, though there’s no official date of opening just yet. That puts them in line with most of the other properties coming to the Beverly Center, including Ayesha Curry’s barbecue restaurant, and much of Michael Mina’s expected food hall.

In the meantime, fried chicken lovers can still head in a number of directions to get their fix, including Honeybird and Sweet Chick nearby on Fairfax, with a Howlin’ Ray’s coming to Culver City next year as well. There’s even already a restaurant called The Yardbird, a recently-opened strip mall situation over in Glendale — not to mention all the restaurant mini-concepts coming to Edin Park food hall in the future as well. Expect Yardbird to open at the Beverly Center in spring of 2018.