Square Meal: Parson’s Chicken & Fish

written by:
March 20, 2014
How did this hip restaurant become Chicago’s hottest patio? Shipping containers helped. Read Full Article
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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
The Humboldt Park eatery has operated like an idealized backyard BBQ since opening last May, serving up incredible fried chicken and fish and potent, potable Negroni slushies to the mobs jockeying for patio space. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    The Humboldt Park eatery has operated like an idealized backyard BBQ since opening last May, serving up incredible fried chicken and fish and potent, potable Negroni slushies to the mobs jockeying for patio space. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
The relatively small, 1,500-square-foot restaurant, which feeds the packed patio on the bulk of the 10,000-foot lot, is augmented by a series of three shipping containers-turned-bars. Reusing that material—which also falls under the city's classification for 'temporary structures'—has significant environmental impact, saving material and money. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    The relatively small, 1,500-square-foot restaurant, which feeds the packed patio on the bulk of the 10,000-foot lot, is augmented by a series of three shipping containers-turned-bars. Reusing that material—which also falls under the city's classification for 'temporary structures'—has significant environmental impact, saving material and money. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
The relatively small, 1,500-square-foot restaurant boasts a handful of custom neon signs. Squint and you can see the El Camino around the corner. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    The relatively small, 1,500-square-foot restaurant boasts a handful of custom neon signs. Squint and you can see the El Camino around the corner. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
This flexible, seasonal spot boasts an interior sporting roadside-industrial chic and an outdoor Eden with plants from local gardening store Sprout. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    This flexible, seasonal spot boasts an interior sporting roadside-industrial chic and an outdoor Eden with plants from local gardening store Sprout. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
Renovations, which started in October 2012, actually brought the space full circle; originally an outpost of the Chicken Unlimited fast food chain (“Tender as quail … tasty as pheasant”), the former restaurant at 2952 W. Armitage had been a bakery and even a muffler shop. For the local Land & Sea collective -- Pete Toalson, designer Cody Hudson (Struggle Inc.) and Jon Martin and Robert McAdams (design and fabrication company Mode Carpentry) -- bringing back the fryers was their second foray into the restaurant world, after the incredibly successful, Michelin-starred Longman & Eagle. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    Renovations, which started in October 2012, actually brought the space full circle; originally an outpost of the Chicken Unlimited fast food chain (“Tender as quail … tasty as pheasant”), the former restaurant at 2952 W. Armitage had been a bakery and even a muffler shop. For the local Land & Sea collective -- Pete Toalson, designer Cody Hudson (Struggle Inc.) and Jon Martin and Robert McAdams (design and fabrication company Mode Carpentry) -- bringing back the fryers was their second foray into the restaurant world, after the incredibly successful, Michelin-starred Longman & Eagle. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
Ryan Duggan, a local designer and rock poster artist, decorated a red El Camino parked in the front yard. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    Ryan Duggan, a local designer and rock poster artist, decorated a red El Camino parked in the front yard. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
“Impact” items in the design include the tile mural at the bar, custom patterned wooden doors in the bathrooms, neon signs and the impressive design work. Lettering and graphic artists Matthew Tapia created the skull-and-crossbones style logo and Cody Hudson did the graphic design. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    “Impact” items in the design include the tile mural at the bar, custom patterned wooden doors in the bathrooms, neon signs and the impressive design work. Lettering and graphic artists Matthew Tapia created the skull-and-crossbones style logo and Cody Hudson did the graphic design. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
The intricate bathroom stall designs were a collaborative project.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    The intricate bathroom stall designs were a collaborative project.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
The outdoor tables are hand-numbered. This is where many drinks will soon be consumed. Not pictured; the ping-pong table. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    The outdoor tables are hand-numbered. This is where many drinks will soon be consumed. Not pictured; the ping-pong table. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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  Parson's Chicken & Fish
The view of Armitage Avenue from the interior of Parson's. Photo by Clayton Hauck.
    Parson's Chicken & Fish

    The view of Armitage Avenue from the interior of Parson's. Photo by Clayton Hauck.

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