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The Cardinal

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The Cardinal

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Address: 234 East Fourth St (Avenue A)
City: New York, NY
Zip: 10009
Phone: (212) 995-8600

Site: Visit the restaurant site
Map: Map
Chef: Curtis Brown
Cuisine: Southern
2nd Cuisine: Barbecue
Area: East Village
Entree Price: $10-$20
Takeout: Yes
Payment: Cash only


It seems to be trend for southern food restaurants to be opening in the Big Apple, and Curtis Brown, former front man of the rock band Bad Wizard, is no exception to the rule. The Cardinal has opened in Alphabet City, and for the moment, reviews seem to indicate that this new kid on the block will be around for awhile. Along with several business partners including American Apparel's Dov Charney and Leanne Hebert-Nguyen, Brown has created a mostly-southern menu including all locally sourced meat as well as homemade sausage and head cheese and in-house smoked ribs. Menu items range from all over the south, including classics like smothered and fried pork chops (18), BBQ ribs, pulled pork and hot links (21 for a plate of 2) and sides like mac and cheese, candied yam, pickled trotters and pickled eggs (2 free sides with each main). The downtown atmosphere and celebrity names associated with this BBQ house seem to be the main ingredients in making this a winner. Early reviews also give major points to the waitstaff and kitchen, who have hit the ground running from the get-go, a major plus in a city where new restaurants are constantly popping up and just as quickly shutting down for smaller offenses than a disorganized dining room. The prices are reasonable, and southern food fans all over the Big Apple have already started listing the Cardinal amongst the best in southern food in the city. - Emily Monaco