Yardbird Southern Table & Bar's Small Shares: A First Bite (Pictures)

Yardbird Southern Table & Bar might be onto something. The restaurant, which features home style Southern cuisine, a lively bar filled with bourbon and beer selections, and hot your chef Jeff McInnis, might just have become the new industry hot spot.

We've been there only three times since the restaurant opened on October 3, yet we've already spotted Michael Schwartz of Michael's Genuine Food & Drink fame and general manager of the soon-to-be-opened Philippe by Philippe Chow, Andrew Kaplan. With the knowledge that these players don't eat crappy food, we got busy ordering.

The menu is broken down into three parts: small shares, big shares, and sides to share. We stuck with small shares and sides to go with our bourbons and beers. The Bourbon Blackberry Lemonade was super sweet, so if you don't like too much sugar, go with the Porkchop, made with a touch of Dijon mustard. Or skip the mixed drinks, served in mason jars, and head straight for their good craft beer selection.

A crock of boiled peanuts arrived at the table, the Yardbird equivalent

of chips. Though not boiled enough to eat with the shells on, the vinegary

brine made them an unusual and tangy snack. Messy, but worth it.

Corn 3 ($5), grilled corn with hominy and crispy cornbread crumbles, had a nice texture. The hominy popped in your mouth, making this an interactive dish.

Sauteed Brussels sprouts leaves with olive oil, sunflower seeds and green apples ($5) were served in a mini crock. The sprouts were tender, but the apple flavor wasn't really noted.

Macaroni and cheese ($8) is the hearty mac 'n' cheese of the south. The kind served at Sunday pot-luck suppers. Cheese lovers will not be disappointed.

Mama's Chicken Biscuits ($14) feature a fried Bell and Evans chicken breast on a homemade buttermilk biscuit with pepper jelly.

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