Lenoir executive chef Todd Duplechan and his partners opened J.T. Youngblood’s today at 1905 Aldrich St. in the Mueller development. The retro-inspired restaurant is initially only open for lunch daily from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will expand hours in the near future.
Duplechan, Jeffrey’s co-founder Jeffrey Weinberger, and former Trio at the Four Seasons general manager Jeff Haber have given new life to the brand that originally opened in the 1940s and grew to more than 30 locations across Texas before shuttering around 1970.
The restaurant serves the trademark Youngblood’s fried chicken, which Weinberger featured at his old Shoreline Grill, along with rotisserie chicken. You can order the chicken in a variety of baskets, with sides like braised greens, honey carrots, buttermilk mashed potatoes with gravy and more. All of the chicken is humanely raised Smart Chicken brand. Youngblood’s also serves a couple of sandwiches and salads, along with handmade milkshakes. See the complete menu here.
“We’re trying to usher in a new style of fast food,” Duplechan told the Statesman last year. “The Southern food your grandparents would have had. Not Paula Deen-Southern, but from-the-garden Southern. Good, fresh healthy food.”
The original Youngblood’s had an Austin location near the current P. Terry’s on South Lamar Boulevard. Austin native and former adman Forrest Preece has fond memories.
“I still remember the smell of that place — the fried chicken and yeast rolls. My version of nirvana in the fifties,” Preece told the Statesman last year. “The breading on that chicken had a certain crispy pop that made each bite special. Of course, it was a day of total entertainment when my parents would take me to the Kiddie Park directly across South Lamar and I could ride the ponies and the merry-go-round and then we ate at Youngblood’s.”