Dec. 23, 2020 By Michael Dorgan
Mad For Chicken, the Korean-style chicken chain, is opening a restaurant in Forest Hills next month.
The new restaurant, which will be located at 71-37 Austin St., will be the company’s fifth venue, with three currently in Queens and another in Brooklyn. Given COVID-19 restrictions, the new eatery will only offer take out and delivery when it opens.
The Forest Hills restaurant will take over the space that was previously occupied by Hinoki Japanese Restaurant, which shuttered in July.
Mad For Chicken was first established in Flushing in 2005 and the company has recently expanded– opening restaurants in Bayside and Sunnyside in August. It also opened a Williamsburg, Brooklyn, venue last year.
The Austin Street restaurant is around 2,000 square feet in size and will have a similar décor as its other restaurants, with a rustic interior and dining booths, according to Clinton Oh, a spokesperson for Mad For Chicken.
The establishment will be offering up the company’s signature fried chicken menu, which includes scallion chicken, drumsticks and wings, buffalo wings and boneless chicken breasts. Other items include the mac and cheese melt, nachos, salads and kimchi fries. The restaurant will also have a full bar.
“It will be a soft opening to begin with until we get a clearer picture surrounding restrictions,” Oh said.
Opening hours are still being hammered out but Oh expects the establishment to be open for just afternoons initially – on Mondays through Sundays.
He said that the operators of the new restaurant are undeterred by the pandemic and the Forest Hills opening is a testament to the company’s viable business model.
“We are looking to expand aggressively throughout New York City and there was an appeal from our existing customer base to open in Forest Hills,” Oh said.
The Mad For Chicken chain, Oh said, was doing well while operating at 25 percent indoor capacity but the current restrictions of no indoor dining has been a major setback.
“It’s tough for everybody during the pandemic but we are trying to stay positive and get through this,” Oh said. “We’re thankful to all the residents and the community for consistently supporting us.”