Omnivore - Ludacris closes Straits, opens Chicken N Beer at the airport

And you’ll never guess who the contractor is...


When we first heard that Chicken and Beer was one of the restaurants vying for a spot at the airport, we assumed it was perhaps connected to the Chicken and Beer in Duluth next to Honey Pig. In fact, the idea that a strange Korean fried chicken joint could be part of the airport concession hijinks gave me faith — if those folks could compete for a spot, then the uneasy suspicion that these lucrative airport deals are just sleazy friends-of-folks-in-high-places handouts had to be wrong, right?

Well, not so much. Turns out, it’s not the Korean Chicken and Beer at all, rather, the Chicken N Beer now slated to go into the airport is owned by Ludacris. AND, the contractor for Chicken N Beer is the Atlanta Restaurant Partners LLC group, an “out-growth” of Jackmont Hospitality, the concessions firm formed by late Mayor Maynard Jackson and currently led by Daniel Halpern. Halpern was Mayor Kasim Reed’s campaign fundraiser and one of his appointees to the Atlanta Housing Authority.

So, yeah. So much for the casting off of the uneasy feelings.

Oh yeah, and when Luda found out he had the contract for Chicken N Beer, he decided to close Straits, his MIdtown Singaporean restaurant that’s been open for four years.