Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Report: Empire Biscuit opens today


[Photo from last week]

Empire Biscuit officially opens this morning at 8, according to DNAinfo. (Empire was open last night from 6-10.)

Per DNA:

The flaky Southern favorites will be topped with a selection of gourmet spreads, including goat cheese and black pepper butter, pineapple and thyme jam and pumpkin pie spread, owners Jonathan Price and Yonadav Tsuna said.

Here is their menu:




Starting Friday, Empire — located at 198 Avenue A — will be open 24 hours. The space was previously home to Habibi Lounge.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Incoming Empire Biscuit on Avenue A launches Kickstarter campaign (121 comments)

65 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bacon, egg and cheese at any bodega or deli: $3.50
Bacon, egg and cheese at Nestor Biscuits: $6.00

But oh, a small price to pay for Southern familiarity we here in the North are not familiar with.

Anonymous said...

Get the fuck outta heeeeeah... they opened!? Hahahahahhaa!!! Can't wait to hear how this turns out.

Anonymous said...

...egg sandwich + coffee at Wayside, billed as a morning special, an eye-popping $9 bucks.

but hey, trustafarian prices for all.

John J said...

Why wait? Let me tell you: Bad!

They were almost on to something when they thought of opening a seafood / fish restaurant as those are few and far between and would be a welcomed addition to the neighborhood. But then they got stuck in a foodie vacuum and decided an all night / all biscuit joint was the way to go.

Most of these concept places fail because foodies mostly consult with other foodies. Their bizarre trends like fro-yo in a hoof and biscuits make sense to them but if you ask someone, 'Hey, you're rushing to work in the morning what do you want to quickly grab to eat?' A crumbling biscuit made from lard probably isn't the answer. I don't care how much artisanal jam and fancy weeds you smear on it. Maybe if these were a blue collar part of town and people had to fuel up in the morning before doing incredibly hard, physical labor but we don't. It's going to go straight to your waist as you read Buzzfeed all day at your desk job. And I don't see a biscuit dinner wooing the neighborhood either.

Between Vampire Biscuits and 7-Eleven our block is going to hell.

nygrump said...

I can't help wondering what a Scotch Egg is - is it from Scotland. These prices are normal for any contemporary urban booming area. If you've never had a great biscuit, then you are missing out.

Anonymous said...

Foie Gras butter? Awful. Activists will be all over this place ..

James C. Taylor said...

OK, since when did "DRUNK" become a menu category? What kind of hipster bullshit is that?!

P.S. Scotch eggs are tasty — I used to take one to school when I was little.

9:40 am said...

'you're rushing to work in the morning what do you want to quickly grab to eat?'

But they'll be catering to those trustafarians who don't work or aren't "rushing" to work, e.g. start-ups whose office are in their couches or coffee shops, and the moneyed tourists and transients.

still don't know what was the point of the Kickstarter, if they're still able to open without the $62,500. I guess they were giving their subjects to have the privilege of getting a high-fives from them.

Anonymous said...

My friend and I made a bet about this the other day. I predicted that on weekend nights, the line will stretch out the door and down the street, with the drunks they are catering to (see their tagline) lining up for biscuits and annoying the neighbors. My friend says there won't be a line out the door. Who is right? We shall see!

DrGecko said...

Scotch eggs are, I'm not kidding, hardboiled eggs coated in sausage and then fried. For extra disgusting, they're usually eaten cold. I'm not sure if they bother to shell them or not; can't see it really makes much of a difference either way.

They're popular in some places, where the choice is either Scotch eggs or haggis.

Anonymous said...

midtown would have made more sense. cute concept would be an interesting alternative up there- although the marketing to drunks...yuck.
Maybe a lot of 'drunks' will be going through their grabage, since they will probably be throwing a lot of food in the trash.

dwg said...

Using "Drunk" as part of your logo and advertising not a welcome sight to those of us who lived through and endured the noise and intoxicated crowds of Superdive and Habibi Lounge. With Common Ground just up the block and Double Wide just around the corner "Drunk" is not what we want to see in late night and after hours patrons.

Anonymous said...

Breakfast * Lunch * Dinner * Drunk

Holy crap! I can't believe they actually did that.

bowboy said...

"Drunk" - what a bad move. you can cater to them without labeling yourself as such. it's an afront to their neighbors and the community. what totally unnecessary stupidity. it sealed the deal that I'll never spend $ there.

Anonymous said...

Open 24 hours? I feel for the poor bastard(s) who will be working there between 5am - 6am when it's deadsville (after the drunks have gone home and before anyone walks in before their work shift).

The "Drunk" bit... can you really picture a drunk kid who blew $30/$40 on drinks then shelling out on average $7 - $9 on a small biscuit treat? Surely they'd rather blow that wad of cash on something more substantial like a McDonald's meal (as gross as that would be).

Anonymous said...

24 Hours! OK GREAT!
That Roof Exhaust fan Jet Engine will be running allatime? Yes! That new whine that can be heard within a 1,200 yard radius - BISCUIT ENGINE! For all of us who are directly impacted by this in the rear courtyards behind their building, I am sorry...

Gojira said...

I do believe those five little letters added at the end of Breakfast~Lunch~Dinner are going to cost them. They're sure as hell not getting a cent of my money.

Anonymous said...

They claim "We love you" to vegetarians, and then they serve something as Satanic as "fois gras butter".

Sounds like the way Google claims they are not evil.

- East Villager

Anonymous said...

As a vegetarian, I find the parenthetical "We Love You!" after the vegetarian biscuit (when all other biscuits just get a straightforward description) to be rather obnoxious and condescending. Ooh, you love us! Take your chicken-fried nonsense somewhere else, jive turkeys.

I predict this will fail not even so much because of the silliness of the product but for the people involved. Expect to see Kickstarter begging, round 2 in under six months.

Anonymous said...

Jinx, East Villager! I don't even want to know what "face cheese" is.

-11:49 AM

AC said...

Dear Empire Biscuit,

I will happily try items from your menu if you take the "Drunk" off of your branding.

Anonymous said...

"stuck in a foodie vacuum" - Exactly! On top of it, they all feel they have to out-do each other with their food fetishism, forgetting along the way, the regular people have to eat this stuff.

marjorie said...

to quote the old life cereal commercial: 'iiiiiii'm not gonna try it! YOU TRY IT."

(sadly, the EV is full of mikeys.)

and fro-yo in a hoof: will it make me laugh every single time i read it? IT MIGHT.

blimey said...

Nothing Southern about Scotch eggs, it's British. Just tells you the pretentiousness of this place.

"he said, adding that he has no intention of adding alcohol to his menu." Sure. We'll see about that.

"biscuit topped with a custom combination of jam and butter will cost $4.50". For 4.50 you can get a biscuit or sandwich, or a biscuit and beverage at your local bodega/deli/coffee cart. [What's a deli/bodega? the newbie asks.]

Scotch eggs at Meyers of Keswick costs $3.50.

Donut Pub has excellent biscuits made fresh daily for less than $2.

This would be a sell in artisanal Williamsburg/Bushwick Brooklyn.

Anonymous said...

Fois gras is animal torture. Reeeeaaal nice you pretentious jerks.

Big Brother said...

I'm nostalgic for Lucky Charms! They're magically delicious! I'm going to open a 24 hour Lucky Charms restaurant! Look at me! Look at me! I'm so unique and quirky! Just like the 8,000,000 people who ruined Brooklyn! Gold star! Gold star! Ooh! Ooh! I'm trying so hard! Coming soon: Empire Biscuit lanes! Drive right up for your tortured animal spread! Mmmm!!!

Anonymous said...

Vegetarian: We love you!

What the fuck do you take me for (as a vegetarian)? A scabby leper you DEIGN to acknowledge and toss a non-lard crumb to? Because clearly I'm of "the other". The fuck!?

Gojira said...

Whenever I am pissed off at work (and that is often), I come to EVG and read the comments, and invariably am left laughing at the smart snark. Thank you, my fellow curmudgeons, for the much-needed humor, whether it was intended or not.

Anonymous said...

2:46. Please be my new best friend.

Remember when the EV was full of anarchists and hippies and Hare Krishna and even if we vegetarians weren't the majority, we certainly also weren't some afterthought these baconated biscuitheads threw a bone to (so to speak). I'd rather bring back cigarettes than deal with these freaks who want to lard-fry everything and drink bourbon milkshakes for breakfast. Why is there so much of this neo-hillbilly crap in New York now??

If anyone needs me I'll be at the felafel cart on 14th and A.

Giovanni said...

Let the Empire Biscuit Deathwatch begin. With this "it's so crazy, it just might work" foodie concept, the East Village just went from "Gentrified" to "Stupefied."

In this brave new world, only two outcomes are possible:

1) The East Village ceases to exist as we know it. Tour busses change their routes and clog Avenue A at all hours of the day. Suddenly even Crusties and people who live in the projects start eating fois gras, face cheese, and scotch eggs on a lard laden bun. 7-11 starts selling knockoffs, and the cronut guy abandons his business to buy a biscuit franchise. Empire Biscuit goes national and overtakes McDonalds within 10 years, surpassing Apple Computer as the most valuable company on earth.

2) Empire Biscuit flames out faster than any other foodie concept in history, with the notable exceptions of froyo on a hoof and pizza in a cup. Life as we know it returns to normal, traffic patterns calm, and everyone breathes a sigh of relief. The Biscuit boys decide to launch their next venture, froyo on a hoof in a cup, and the world once again holds its collective breath in horror and fascination at the endless possibilities

THE NOTORIOUS L.I.B.E.R.A.T.I.O.N. said...

Long live fro-yo in a hoof and pizza in a cup! Though I prefer my pizza in a gluten free, S'mac flavored, Cronut dipped, Waffle and Dingleberry served in a bike lane! Boom!

Gojira said...

@Giovanni, you just proved my point. Still laughing as I type this.

What do we think about the concept of face cheese in a hoof? Or maybe fro-face?

Crazy Eddie said...

"If anyone needs me I'll be at the felafel cart on 14th and A." You're a better man than I am, Anony 3.42.

Anonymous said...

Crazy Eddie, I am a lady, and I loves me some street felafel! That cart is not my all-time favorite, but it is the one closest to the biscuit buffoonery.

Anonymous said...

Personally I think the biscuit place is great and unique.

I stopped in for one this morning and thought it was absolutely delicious. I met the owners and found them down to earth and not pretentious at all.

Highly recommended!!!

Drunk and Drunkerer said...

Can they be more obnoxious and clueless? Then again, their target customers are the clueless and obnoxious.

MaddMaxx said...

Holy bat shit and bagels! I had have to hock my grandma's custom made, bi-cuspids pointed into fangs, dentures to be able to afford a bloody thing (oops! Pun intended!)I raise chickens and I want to know what a Scott chicken can lay that my Buff Orpingtons can't. I challenge them to a duel!!

Anonymous said...

I would have been there on opening day if they hadn't been so brazen about catering to the "drunk" frat types who go to Double Wide and other local bars and then stand out on the sidewalk hooting and hollering. I am with the others who aren't spending money at a place with zero respect for the neighbors.

The people who live in the back should call the Department of Environmental Protection about the exhaust fan going 24 hours and making all that noise. It can't be legal. If it is making that much noise, they could be required to install a quieter device, and quieter devices do exist.

Anonymous said...

The only Scott eggs I want to see are Ewan McGregors, otherwise, you're wasting my time Biscuit Biatches.

Crazy Eddie said...

"I met the owners and found them down to earth and not pretentious at all."

Then why include the word DRUNK in your marketing? See the earlier EV Grieve tread on this joint when was it was first announced, same question, no answers from them.

Anonymous said...

What about the word drunk makes them pretentious??

Anonymous said...

"Coming soon: Empire Biscuit lanes! Drive right up for your tortured animal spread! Mmmm!!!"

ROTFLMFAO!

no Scotch in Scotch eggs, unless they get a liquor license said...

6:08 pm = astroturfer

Anonymous said...

I saw Nestor in there getting his high five and sucking down some Rocky Mountain Oysters!

Anonymous said...

"Our friends would sleep through the fried fish part, and then they would freak out when we mentioned biscuits and gravy at 3 a.m.,” Price said [before they threw their bongs out the window.]

Billsville said...

Exactly. The sum total of their marketing research comes down to this:

"Our friends would sleep through the fried fish part, and then they would freak out when we mentioned biscuits and gravy at 3 a.m.”

And to top it off, then they came up with a tagline that actually includes the word "drunk." Enough said.

Crazy Eddie said...

pre·ten·tious
adjective: pretentious

Attempting to impress by affecting greater importance, talent, culture, etc., than is actually possessed. "a pretentious literary device"
synonyms: affected, ostentatious, showy; overambitious, pompous, artificial, inflated, overblown, high-sounding, flowery, grandiose, elaborate, extravagant, flamboyant, ornate, grandiloquent, magniloquent, sophomoric; informalflashy, highfalutin, fancy-pants, la-di-da, pseudo

"Clytemnestra is a pretentious name for a dog"

OK Anony 8.26 PM? This dump's marketing reeks of pretentious. "Did IQs just drop sharply while I was away? "

Anonymous said...

I think you byo Scotch in a flask.

Also, this thread gives me a retirement fund idea. I'm going to open one of those nice restful detox places in the country (far away, where no one wants to buy condos)for about 15 years from now, when all the frat and frattettes need to dry out.

Will serve fro yo in a hoof for old tymes sake...

Anonymous said...

I walked by earlier and the '$75 High Five Club' was there. Maybe 12 people TOPS. Biscuit Boys will never see this many people in there at once again.

Anonymous said...

Everyone is pretentious. Some are better at it than others, of course.

- East Villager

Anonymous said...

Please post about Empire Biscuits every week. The comments are hilarious. Thanks for the laughs.

Anonymous said...

I know what pretentious is.

Defining pretentious in a condescending way is literally the definition of pretentious.

All I wanted to know, is what about the word "drunk" makes them pretentious. I don't see it.

Anonymous said...

So, one comment by people who have actually been inside....

The comment culture here is amazing. Not a criticism. Just amazing.

Anonymous said...

Wowwwww, a few biscuits sure gets this crowd's nickers in a knot!

weigone said...

Anon 10:55pm: "Drunk" = obnoxious, privileged 20-somethings with no sense of place, history, gratitude, or people outside of their own, limited social circles. However, because they have money and a liberal arts education, they think they are better "informed" and more 'socially conscious" than everyone else, which somehow translates to, in their silly little immature minds, to more avant-garde and/or progressive tastes in "haute" culture and whatever else bullshit they arbitrarily deem to be important. Therefore, they sneer at the "locals" for their lack of refinement while at the same time laboring towards their "enlightenment." Not once throughout this wholly miserable process do they stop and think, oh hey, I have a shitton of money to spend on useless shit such as 50-dollar t-shirts and 7-dollar biscuits, maybe I'm just a rich kid with my head stuck up my ass and I should just go build some schools in Africa and maybe die in the desert and save a bunch of people the utter headache of having to meet me, be polite to me, and pretend to want to know me. Because I'm a rich douchebag!!

THAT is what "drunk" has to do with "pretentious."

Anonymous said...

So I just went to their Facebook and it seems they're closing Thursday: "We sold out of nearly everything today and are going to spend tomorrow regrouping. Demand was way higher than we prepared for." Really though? Oh yeah I actually did hear about that white flour and lard shortage here in the city ...

Also they were excited about being mentioned on Urban Daddy. LAWL!!! Urban Daddy is like, the bible of all things douche. I would keep that info on the low and hope no one noticed (which no one would, because who in the hell reads Urban Daddy??).

Anonymous said...

Hey 11:22pm and 11:56pm: Why are you Empire Biscuit guys compelled to read and comment here? Staying away is probably better for fragile egos.

Woo Generation said...

This place would ROCK if they had pizza! Or cereal!

Anonymous said...

Oh my god, 1:02AM (a few comments before me) was right; on their FB page they say they ran out of stock, didn't think things through so they'll be closed today.

NICE BUSINESS SENSE! Hahahahhahah!

Anonymous said...

Why yes of course weigone, anyone who is up having a few drinks late in the east village and looking for something to eat MUST be pretentious and privileged.

Historically that is actually very accurate.

Why even Leona Helmsley herself shortly before her death could be spotted downing beers and singing karaoke at one of New York's most pretentious bars, Planet Rose Karaoke. While many of her friends would try to get her to engage in other extravagance like the tasting menu at Per Se, she would refuse. Occasionally she could be found at other nearby watering holes like Common Ground, but would refuse to stray from the area citing the opulence and grandeur of the bars themselves.

Of course, at the end of the night, hungry, and having deemed Zaragoza not pretentious enough, she would force her driver to drive around all night looking for any kind of establishment that sold what some deem the most pretentious food imaginable: southern biscuits.

Difficult to find at the time, it was even reported that she fired several drivers for only producing scones, a somehow less pretentious pastry.

Why if only she was alive today, she could have what some would deem the most extravagant night in Manhattan, Karaoke and a biscuit without walking more than a block.

If only she were still alive to realize her dream.

Anonymous said...

Biscuit Boys (or their girlfriends) at 9:22:

Cute, but you are in no league with Planet Rose or Zaragoza and never will be. You're not even OPEN today. Stay in your lane.

You know what might make people like you? Get a cat. Call him something dumb and Southern, like Cletus or Bubba. I still won't eat your animal-hating food but I will at least smile at your cat when I pass your store on the way home.

Anonymous said...

Menu looks ahhh not so good.
Don't care much for animal cruelty and Lard.
Foie gras and butter?
Bacon butter?
Lard butter?
Butter!
Oh please....

Anonymous said...

They should have called it Empire Butter.

Cosmo said...

Zoltar predicts that on Dec 15, there will be a photo posted on this blog depicting a drunk Santa riding a Citibike in a bike lane with a lard-buttered-biscuit-in-a-hoof in one hand, bland eastern-block-inspired architectural plans in the other...

Anonymous said...

they ran out of stock? maybe they figured Halloween trick or treaters would not be very happy with a high-five.