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Copper Pot Chicken Co. opens in Rockville Centre

The fried chicken at Copper Pot Chicken Co.

The fried chicken at Copper Pot Chicken Co. in Rockville Centre is brined for 24 hours, coated in a matzo-meal-flecked batter and then fried twice. Photo Credit: Copper Pot Chicken

Before it was the latest fried chicken joint to join Long Island’s burgeoning oil-crackled bird scene, Copper Pot Chicken Co. in Rockville Centre was a one-night stand.

As chef Art Gustafson tells it, on a fall night at his Chadwicks American Chop House & Bar, he seated 100 customers, and 70 ordered the special — twice-fried chicken that had been brined overnight, crusted in a matzo-meal-flecked batter and served in a copper pot for a “more upscale” feel.

Copper Pot Chicken opened late last month in the former Spanish tapas spot Sangre de Uva with a tongue-in-cheek vibe. Here, the walls are adorned with blush-worthy expressions such as “If they only want legs, breasts & thighs, send them to C.P.C.,” and “Chicken Parking Only, All others will be plucked.”

The restaurant is yet another new concept from Gustafson, who has become sort of a culinary savant in town, creating successful eateries that also include Tony Colombos Italian Bistro and Salsa Mexicana Kitchen & Cocktails.

“The idea was to do something more boutiquey than your corner fried chicken store, a little Hamptons style,” he said. The prices reflect that. An 8-piece bucket with two sides and three biscuits is $25.

The long, narrow space crams roughly 40 bar and dining seats into a restaurant that has been redesigned with of-the-moment flourishes that include faux copper tin ceilings, frosted light fixtures, exposed brick and a microbrew tap list that includes a Copper Pot Ale, a pale ale produced for the restaurant by Prohibition Brewing Co. in California. Shakes are hand spun in front of you, including a double chocolate ice version with whipped cream ($5.50) that is as heavy duty as it sounds.

The menu is rounded out with barbecue, including ribs and pulled pork, a potpie, burgers and three types of sausages.

The main act here, the fried chicken, is made using free-range Bell & Evans birds, and comes with a choice of sides, including homemade versions of creamy mac and cheese, potato tots and garlicky collard greens.

Copper Pot Chicken Co., 65 N. Village Ave., Rockville Centre; 516-600-9656, copperpotchicken.com

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