Marcus Samuelsson, acclaimed proprietor of the Red Rooster, is bringing another innovative culinary concept to his home turf of Harlem: Streetbird, a restaurant focusing on rotisserie chicken. And because this is Marcus Samuelsson, who is known for his unique approach to food, it won’t be just any chicken. Streetbird opens on April 2 on Frederick Douglass Boulevard and 116th Street and will reflect the chef’s multicultural upbringing, which spans from Ethiopia to Sweden, while also featuring dishes that reflect urban street culture.
Rotisserie chicken is the star of the menu, with accompanying multi-ethnic sauces like barbecue, hot sauce, jerk, sweet soy, and salsa verde. Other dishes include General Ye's chicken with crispy chicken, green beans, mango and peanuts and a rich Bird Broth with shiitake mushrooms, scallions, and jalapeño. There are also bread-based dishes, like the Tack Tack, a house-made, fermented tortilla with fillings like C. Chavez ( ripped rotisserie chicken, mole, pickled red onions, lettuce, and cilantro); and noodles and rice-based dishes like the Fly Girl ( black kale, romaine, green beans, toasted rice, and lime-coconut dressing). Guests can imbibe specialty cocktails that reflect the menu’s wide breadth of cultural inspiration: try the Juicy Fruit, made with rum, mango puree, and pickle juice.
The restaurant’s design is almost as much of an attraction as the food itself. The interior will be decorated with street art inspired by graffiti of the ‘70s,’ 80s, and ‘90s. Cey Adams, the founding creative director of Def Jam records, created graffiti art just for the restaurant. The restaurant immerse itself into the community through regular community block parties and events held for the people of Harlem.