Chicken Scratch and The Foundry to Open in Oak Cliff

How long before Oak Cliff secedes from Dallas county to form their own little republic? Think how cool that would be for the business folk: the restaurateurs and funky food shops could make their own rules, they could charge a toll to enter and exit, and fine customers not wearing flannel.

Obviously either Tim Byres, Christopher Jeffers, or Chris Zielke (or all three!) would rule the roost. Today the triumvirate announced two more projects. The owners of Smoke and Bar Belmont took over the 3-acre plot of land that used to be Jack’s Backyard. (Fort Worth Avenue and Pittman St.) First up: Chicken Scratch, a family-friendly restaurant serving—wait for it—“cast-iron fried and wood-fired rotisserie chicken with wholesome handmade sides.” It’s “slow fast food.” (Wouldn’t it be fast slow food? I’ll leave that one for someone else like Jack Perkins.)

Next door to The Scratching Chicken, I mean Chicken Scratch, will be The Foundry. Sounds serious, right? Nope. The Foundry will be a bar offering simple drinks. (Drama! Do I sense a struggle between mixolgists v bartenders?) The drinks with be simple and strong. (I could say something about my ex-husband here but I’ll let it pass.) There will be beer—lots of drafts and bottles and microbrews plus “usual suspects.” Affordable! Live music! And, if they can swing it: the property will be able to “host food and merchandise trucks, drive-in movies, and other community themed events.”

The Foundry is scheduled in early January 2012 and Chicken Scratch “soon after.” (I still think they should have named it Petticoat Junction. Wouldn’t you eat chicken at the Shady Rest? Such a duh.)

Trending:Scratch” in a restaurant name, fried chicken, and regular bartenders without pork pie hands and mutton chops.” Somebody get me a Realtor.


  • LJT

    This is such cool news! Can’t wait to picnic and watch movies and let the little one run around like a wild child with her little OC friends!

  • Joe Abboud

    DMN beat you to it by almost a full day. Give a hat tip where it’s due.

  • Joe, I’ve had this post scheduled for ten days. They asked me to keep it until the 14th. I did not see it on Eats until you called attention to it. Way to go, Kim.

  • Twinwillow

    @Joe ~ You mean, people actually still read the DMN?

  • VM

    @twinwillow — yes, several hundred thousand

  • Twinwillow

    Wow. That’s a lot of people. I guess.

  • Miguel

    I would think this would be good news if I didn’t think it was a textbook case of doing too much, too soon. Once they get hospitality (and cleanliness) right at their other ventures (I’m talking SMOKE and BOLSA for those of you who are clueless), then let them forge ahead with these self-serving grand plans. From where I’m standing, they have plenty to keep them busy with all the loose ends still hanging at the aforementioned places.

  • Kim Pierce

    Total fluke, Nancy. A moment of serendipity. We know who the scoopsters are in this town.

  • LJT

    @Miguel – self serving grand plans? I don’t know how it serves their “selfs” to work their collective asses off trying to better the OC community. My idea of self serving grand plans would be to drink vodka, eat cheese and watch TV, but I guess I’m one of the “clueless” ones who has enjoyed dining at Smoke & Bolsa and look forward to what these ambitious dudes are going to do next.

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  • Rhonda Bush

    What’s with the flannel crack?

  • OC Homey

    Where did you get those numbers that a few hundred thousand read the DMN? Did you make it up like before?

    Besides, I’ve heard about this for almost a month now and I don’t work for a newspaper or publish a food blog. I just live in Oak Cliff were secrets like this aren’t very secret. I do wish it was somebody else besides these guys opening these venues, though. They are notoriously way overpriced for what you actually get and their service has always been bordering on surly. The second day the Bolsa Mercado was opened, I went to buy some pruscitto and they didn’t know how much it was. They finally found the chef after 15 minutes and he told them it was $21 a pound. Not bad for pruscitto, really. I made a joke about how much it was and the lady behind the counter fake-smiled at me and smugly said, “Do you want it or not?” Ouch. Give me $5 worth and I’ll drive to Jimmy’s next time, even if you are just around the corner from me.