The ever-popular Momo Sushi Shack in Bushwick has spawned a sister restaurant not too far from its origins. At the corner of Starr Street and Wyckoff Avenue lies Momo Chicken Shack, which opened in late July. Smartly taking note of how much customers loved munching on karaage or Japanese fried chicken thighs at Momo Sushi Shack, business partners Tito Cabrera and Chance Johnston decided to expand the concept into a full restaurant with modestly-priced fare (the karaage is only $9). But perhaps the real star behind Momo Chicken Shack is general manager Valerie Boyle, who helped craft the menu along with Momo Sushi Shack’s chef Izzy Alvarez.
“It’s a continuation from Momo [Sushi Shack]. But we expanded from there. We took a lot of our favorite things about Japanese fried chicken and married them with techniques that are synonymous with Southern fried chicken,” says Boyle.
Along with a long history of working in restaurants and bars, Boyle spent seven years of her life as a vegan and vegetarian. That experience shaped Momo Chicken Shack’s menu, which along with meaty temptations like chicken buns and miso wings, is also rife with “Veggie Things” like shoestring fries tossed with nori, crispy cauliflower wings, “chickn” fruit (aka fried jackfruit) and coleslaw with ponzu and vegan mayo. Save room for dessert with their mochi waffles and matcha rice pudding. Gluten-free options are also available.
When I ask Boyle to expand on her concept, she keeps it short and sweet. “Really good chicken, vegetarian options and a full bar.” What more could you need? Keep checking their Instagram for updates on their beverages—which include cocktails and Japanese whiskey—a forthcoming daytime menu, and their soon-to-be-launched website.
Momo Chicken Shack is located at 247 Starr Street. The restaurant is currently open from 5-11 pm, but expect their hours to expand from 11 am-11 pm by the end of the summer.