It's finally happening for Lincoln Square. The Budlong Hot Chicken will open by the end of the month, about three years since Jared Leonard first pondered opening in the neighborhood. The first address didn’t work out, but now they’ve moved on to 4619 N. Western Ave. Lincoln Square was to be the first for Leonard, but construction and financial delays snarled the project.
It’s a triumphant time as Leonard provided a sneak peek of his Lincoln Square spot. Since Leonard announced that location, he has opened in Lakeview (now shuttered), inside Revival Food Hall in The Loop, and in Lincoln Park.
The star, of course, is the Budlong’s crispy, spicy chicken. But forgive Leonard if he’s a little excited about the design here. It’s his first baby and unlike the other locations this is a gut rehab. While Leonard admitted that it’s fun to reshape a space, there’s a different satisfaction in designing a vacant space to his specifications.
Leonard has opted for a brighter interior which also benefits Instagram users and other food photographers, Leonard noted. At 1,400 square feet and 36 seats, it’s about the same size as the Armitage location in Lincoln Park. But there are a few differences, for one there’s an open kitchen where diners can watch their food being prepared.
Food wise, the biggest addition is that they’re going those potato flour doughnuts inspired by the defunct Spudnuts chain. They will also roll out a late-night menu to help serve the patrons of Spyners Pub, the bar next door. Brunch will also eventually be added.
Take a look at the photos below.