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CHICAGO, IL, July 22, 2016 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Throughout the United States, Southern cuisine is woven into the fabric of breakfast. From bacon to biscuits, breakfast has always had a soulful, family oriented essence. "I consider breakfast to be the most important meal of the day, and I can't see any family having breakfast without Southern staples," says Chef/Owner Darnell Reed. At Luella's Southern Kitchen (4609 N. Lincoln Ave.; 773-961-8294) he intends to give Chicagoans the quintessential Southern breakfast with the introduction of weekday breakfast, served from 6:30 to 10:30 a.m. Monday through Friday. Luella's weekend brunch service continues on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Reed's reputation has grown rapidly since he launched Luella's Southern Kitchen in early 2015. He is turning out some of Chicago's best Southern fare. In March 2016, The Chicago Tribune named Luella's the Best New Southern Restaurant. The Chicago Michelin Guide added Luella's to its prestigious Bib Gourmand list in 2016. Also in March, Make It Better added Luella's Shrimp Po' Boy to its list of Chicago's Best Sandwiches.
Reed has vivid childhood memories of the delicious Southern breakfasts prepared by his late great grandmother Luella, for whom the restaurant is named. "The smell of bacon was my alarm clock," Reed recalls. She would have young Darnell racing from his bedroom to inhale her hearty combination of bacon, rice, and scrambled eggs. As an homage to his grandmother's dish, Luella's breakfast menu will include a Jambalaya with Carolina Gold Rice, Andouille sausage, and poached eggs ($11).
In crafting his breakfast menu, Reed has remained steadfast in using locally sourced or authentically Southern ingredients as much as possible. The menu exudes Southern comfort, with dishes such as the Nashville Hot Chicken and Waffles, prepared with golden crispy chicken, Nashville hot sauce, and maple syrup, all atop Liege waffles ($12). There also is the Bourbon Strawberry Shortcake Waffles consisting of Liege waffles, fresh strawberry compote, bourbon maple syrup, and Chantilly cream ($12). For his Homemade Oatmeal, Reed uses Anson Mills Oatmeal from South Carolina and embellishes it with southern flare: dried cherries and a Sorghum Pecan crumble ($7).
Other delectable breakfast choices include the Buttermilk Blueberry and Brown Butter Pancakes with maple syrup ($11); Smoked Brisket Biscuit with Slagel Farm brisket and egg, served on a homemade buttermilk biscuit with pimento cheese ($12); Brioche French Toast with maple caramel, butterscotch and pralines ($11); a Soft Shell Crab Benedict with buttermilk fried crab, farm eggs, and smoked hollandaise ($15). There is a featured seasonal Southern omelet of the day, served with red bliss potatoes and caramelized onions (price varies).
Breakfast options continue with the numerous side dishes which, when ordered in combination, enable guests to construct their own personalized breakfast.
Reed understands that pork has been an essential part of Southern cuisine. That's why he takes pride in his Sorghum and Toasted Ancho Chili Bacon side ($2 per slice). Made from scratch, the smoky aroma draws guests down to the state of Mississippi. The Boudin Breakfast Sausage Patties with pork and rice have a wonderful Cajun character ($2 per patty). Biscuits are a Southern must-have, and Luella's authentic Southern beauties are freshly made in-house with buttermilk, accompanied by either Andouille sausage gravy ($3 per biscuit) or house-made jam ($2 per biscuit), reminiscent of something a gracious neighbor might share with you from down the street.
Other sides such as Slagel eggs any style ($2 per egg), House Milled Skillet Cheddar Grits ($4), and Red Bliss Potatoes with Caramelized Onions, can be ordered any way guests want 'em to create their own casual breakfast. The meal wouldn't be complete without Luella's fresh, house-made Beignets, topped with powdered sugar ($2 per beignet).
The kids aren't forgotten, either. Special kids' items include a PBJ Biscuit ($2 per biscuit), Chicken and Waffle ($8) and Grilled Cheese sandwich ($6).
"The idea is for people to come in and enjoy a wide range of authentic Southern dishes," says Reed, "prepared with fine ingredients. Before meandering around Lincoln Square, grab a delectably authentic Southern breakfast with friends and family--they're bound to be impressed and ready to enjoy a busy day."
About Chef Reed
Darnell Reed is a graduate of Washburne Culinary Institute in Chicago. He began his professional career in 1997 at the Palmer House Hilton where he served as Restaurant Chef at the French Quarter and the Big Downtown. In 2005, he was promoted to Executive Sous Chef at the Embassy Suites Chicago Lakefront where he handled banquet functions for up to 700 people. In April 2007, Reed was promoted to the dual Executive Chef position at the Hilton of Oakbrook and Hilton Garden Inn of Oakbrook. In May of 2010, he accepted the Executive Sous Chef position at the Conrad Chicago Hotel and was promoted to Executive Chef in 2011. He opened Luella's Southern Kitchen in February of 2015.
About Luella's Southern Kitchen
Luella's Southern Kitchen, located at 4609 N. Lincoln Ave. in Chicago's Lincoln Square, is a casual independent restaurant owned by Chef Darnell Reed. Luella's has earned numerous accolades since it opened on February 3, 2015, including being designated a Bib Gourmand in the Chicago Michelin Guide. In March 2016, the Chicago Tribune named Luella's the Best New Southern Restaurant.
Luella's serves breakfast Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Lunch and dinner is served Tuesday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Weekend brunch is served from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday; dinner is served until 10 p.m. on Saturday and 8 p.m. on Sunday. All major cards are accepted. Luella's is a BYOB establishment; no corkage fee is charged. Takeout and delivery service are available. For more information, call the restaurant at (773) 961-8196 or visit the website at www.luellassouthernkitchen.com.
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