On June 24, Grand Central Market’s popular fried chicken stand Lucky Bird expands into Eagle Rock. In addition to revamping the former Eagle Rock Public House on Colorado Boulevard, chef and co-owner Chris Dane went bigger in the kitchen with a slew of new dishes and beers on-tap.
Back in 2018, chef Chris Dane and his wife Christine opened Lucky Bird in Grand Central Market. The couple also opened a delivery-only location in Chicago last fall. And while the GCM stand found a steady following, they were forced to close three times in 2020, leaving Dane with time to rethink the business. “All of that time off gave me time to tweak things and amp everything up,” he says. “There’s more citrus, more herbs, I tried to punch up the flavor. The cornbread is also gluten-free and finished with a honey simple syrup. It eats like a piece of cake.”
Lucky Bird’s Grand Central Market menu is minimal. But in Eagle Rock, the kitchen will make it far easier to fit extra fryer space along with cobblers and banana cream pudding, waffles, mac and cheese, roasted sweet potatoes, and deep-fried tofu. And now that he has the space to prevent cross-contamination, they’ll now serve gluten-free fried chicken. Dane also developed his own hot chicken sandwich with a sweet and spicy glaze, pickled jalapeños, and buttermilk ranch.
Lucky Bird’s opening aligns a week after the state of California rescinded its COVID-19 health orders on June 15. While there’s plenty of indoor seating, dining outside is limited for now. But Dane tells Eater that he’s applied for more al fresco dining space.
Only a few years ago, Eagle Rock went through a changing of hands, with the longstanding Coffee Table closing, and a new crop of restaurants coming in. The landscape includes two restaurants that opened in 2020 with Hilltop Coffee + Kitchen and the popular Peruvian-Chinese restaurant Chifa. The glamorous Red Herring even had a stint blocks away from Lucky Bird before moving into DTLA.
Dane grew up a few miles away in La Cañada, and hopes to bring some longstanding local flavor to the neighborhood. The Danes made it a point to dive into the Eagle Rock community by sourcing items from local vendors. “It’s part of my history. In sports, I played against Eagle Rock High School. We want to nourish the community and make this an Eagle Rock hotspot,” he says.
A week from today, Lucky Bird will serve Thursday through Monday from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m. Look for expanded lunch service in the near future.