For more than a decade, “Chicken-n-Beer” referred to Atlanta rapper/actor Ludacris’ two times platinum album. As of last month, the moniker also refers to Luda’s restaurant at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
Southern eatery Chicken+Beer, located at the south end of Concourse D, celebrated its official grand opening yesterday with a roster of familiar faces in attendance, including Ludacris, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, “The Cosby Show” actress Keisha Knight Pulliam and Valerie Jackson, the widow of former Atlanta mayor Maynard Jackson (half the namesake of the airport).
Jackson is part owner of Jackmont Hospitality, which partnered with Ludacris on Chicken + Beer and is also owned by CEO Daniel Halpern, and the Jacksons’ daughter Brooke Jackson Edmond. The company also operates One Flew South (the only airport restaurant to have been nominated for a James Beard award), and three TGI Fridays at Hartsfield-Jackson.
Also in attendance were consulting chef Todd Richards of Richards Southern Fried at Krog Street Market and White Oak Kitchen, and bar manager Jerry Slater, who owned the now-shuttered H. Harper Station. Both were also involved in the opening of One Flew South.
Watch Richards and Slater weigh in on the opening and take a look at some of Chicken + Beer’s culinary offerings:
Watch Ludacris and Mayor Reed give statements before the grand opening of Chicken + Beer: