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The Chicken & Waffle.

Local chef Ben McPherson, previously of Prohibition (home of smoked, fried chicken) and Batanga, opened Krisp Bird & Batter last week. The fast-casual chicken sandwich concept emphasizes high-quality ingredients—not usually diners' first thought when chowing down on junk food.

How does McPherson do it? He makes it a point to source his ingredients from local and sustainable farmers and providers. The restaurant serves chicken from Crystal Farms Ranch, where the birds are pasture-raised, humane-certified and fed a non-GMO diet, without antibiotics or hormones. McPherson claims it took more than six months of research and development to determine all the best ingredients and recipes for his chicken, and he judged Crystal Farms to be of the highest quality he tried. The vegetables for the salads are locally sourced. The sandwiches are being offered on fresh-made rolls or vegan whole wheat buns, made daily by Kraftsmen Baking. The Belgian waffles are made to order, and all of the bread options are GMO-free.

The menu includes four chicken sandwiches, served fried or grilled, and offered with any of the aforementioned breads (including that waffle). You can also order your chicken with a waffle in the classic combination, or as a platter of chicken tenders. (The tenders, as with all the fried chicken, are offered in spicy or mild versions.) For sides, the menu includes waffle-cut fries or tater tots, and on the sweet side, there's ice cream, milk shakes, and waffle ice cream sandwiches.

GMO-free chicken not good enough for you? There are healthier options, including salads and fresh fruit. Krisp also has a kids' menu, with items like chicken nuggets, fresh fruit cups, and organic apple juice. Coffee is provided by from local roasters Boomtown Coffee.

The first location opened February 28 at 5922 Richmond Avenue in the Galleria area, making it a direct competitor to Shake Shack and its cultishly adored fried chicken sandwiches. A second location is expected to open in the Heights in June  at 2400 North Shepherd Drive, next to the upcoming H-E-B.  

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