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FINGER-LICKIN’ GOOD

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Fried chicken in Brooklyn? Go find it.

Sure there’s Kentucky Fried Chicken, but eating out of a box loses its charm quickly. Churchill’s Restaurant in Downtown Brooklyn is the answer to comfort cooking in an upscale room. The restaurant opened in May with a sign outside promising "just good food."

They’ve kept their promise.

Chef Vaughn Clements’ classic American dishes quickly gained a following. His fried chicken (pictured) is the real thing: moist inside, spicy and crunchy on the outside and almost greaseless. His crab cakes, macaroni and cheese, and good, smoky barbecue soothe homesick diners, even if home is a quick stop off the L.I.E.

Six dollars will buy you the Churchill’s special. One week, Clements served his fried chicken with mashed potatoes and corn on the cob. The next week, diners drooled over his prime rib sandwich, macaroni and cheese and fresh green salad.

For $9.95, chef Clements offers a daily, all-you-can-eat special buffet. Head over on Wednesdays for barbecued chicken or brisket, or, if the holidays can’t come soon enough, stop in on Thursdays for the Thanksgiving feast. On Sundays, settle in with the newspaper for an all-you-can-eat, $12.95 lunch buffet.

If you’re used to fluorescent-lighted lunch spots with the tables bolted to the floor, Churchill’s will come as a pleasant surprise. The dining room’s lights are soft and recessed, the walls and tables are mahogany, antiques are scattered throughout the room and the floor is slate. In a room like that, you won’t want to rush back to the courthouse.

Churchill’s Restaurant (180 Livingston St. between Smith and Hoyt streets) accepts Visa, MasterCard and American Express. Entrees: $6-$12.95. The restaurant is open Monday-Friday, 7 am-7 pm; and Sunday, 11 am-9 pm. Closed Saturdays. For more information, call (718) 422-1940.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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