Chicken Out: A can’t-miss pop-up at Café Lift for local food lovers

A bird in hand is a good thing, but what about being in possession of a couple hundred chickens when your restaurant opening has been delayed?

Having already committed to the chickens from Amos King, farmer of Silver Springs Acres in Lancaster, that’s the situation butcher Bryan Mayer and restaurateur Michael Pasquarello, partners in the highly anticipated but not yet open Kensington Quarters found themselves in. They’re answer: a fried chicken pop-up Jan. 9 at Cafe Lift (428 North 13th Street).

“Instead of just throwing our hands up in the air, we’re frying some bird,” Mayer says. "If all our problems could be solved so well!"  

The event, which is eat-in and take out, will run from 6 to 9 p.m. (or until the chickens run out) and will serve as an introduction to Kensington Quarters. Enlisting the help of chef Damon Menapace, the meal will include biscuits from Bufad and sides from Prohibition Taproom. 

“Kensington Quarters will be more of a sit down style restaurant,” Pasquarello says. “But we hope to have collaborative meals like this in our upstairs educational space at time.” Paqarello’s excitement about Kensington Quarters is palpable. “This Fishtown project, in my culinary opinion, is extremely special. A chef having a butcher on site; wow, that will make for some real interesting cuts,” he adds.

As for the long hours necessary to plan such an event, Mayer shrugs. “Long days are only tough when you don’t love what you’re doing," he says.