BUTTERCUP - TREATING CHICKEN TENDERS THE BEST
by Andrew Chalk
With Nashville chicken, Korean chicken, Hawaiian chicken, chicken-wings-only chicken, and heaven knows what other iterations entrepreneurs can come up with (Impossible Chicken? Or, from Dan Landsberg, Dragonfly execuchef, Sarcastic Chicken?) it is incumbent on any new entrant to justify the difference in their mashup. Buttercup, at street level in the Legacy Hall food emporium, passes the test.
It is the latest idea from what used to be called Frontburner Restaurant Group, now renamed the FB Society to avoid trademark conflicts, which created such original concepts as Whiskey Cake, The Ranch (...at Las Colinas), Mexican Sugar, Haywire, and Sixty Vines. Carter Reyenga, with a track record at the venerable Pappas restaurants, helms the kitchen (and at Haywire, next door!).
Chicken at Buttercup is chicken put through a skunkworks where chicken tots are the delivery medium but global flavors and textures embalm and suffuse throughout them to create distinct and globally-informed expressions. Even the container can be non-conventional in that most menu items are served in a waffle cone. This means that, in the ultimate green gesture, you can “eat the box”. Some examples of the menu:
Substitute tofu and gluten free is available for any item at no charge.
A wide selection of condiments (called 'fancies') is OG Honey Mustard, Herbaceous Ranch, Bleu Cheese, Atomic Habanero, BBQ, Buffalo, Pimento, and Sriracha Ranch. Sides, in the more conventional sense, are honey butter corn fritters, mac n’ cheese, fried pimento cheese balls, crispy tots, and kids tender bites.
FB Society CEO Jack Gibbons sums up Buttercup
“Buttercup is our unconventional approach to classic comfort food that embraces global influences and encourages flavor exploration. Beyond this, we see Buttercup as a category- and market-defining concept with incredible growth potential. We recognize the opportunity to bring more progressive and inspiring brands to the fast casual space. Like Velvet Taco, Buttercup is ready to help people rethink the classic chicken tender. Some might think we’re crazy launching during a pandemic. We believe an inspiring take on comfort favorites is exactly the departure we all need right now.”
Buttercup has been open for one scant week, so expect pivots and substitutions as they discover what their customers want. Right now, Buttercup elevates chicken tenders as much as any restaurant in town.