Food & Wine
The Bucket List: Louie’s Chicken New York
I had the opportunity to sit down and speak with Tom Citro, owner of Louie’s Chicken NYC. Citro is passionate about the food business and his fellow restaurateurs. Citro opened in August 2020 and is set on opening others within the next few years. Full disclosure, the food is so good!
SL: Please share your background with us.
TC: I grew up in Bedford NY. I attended Fox Lane High School and then college at Alfred University where I studied business and played basketball.
SL: How did you come to open Louie’s Chicken NY? Where is it located?
TC: Louie’s Chicken NYC is located on 2nd avenue between 54Th and 55th Streets in Manhattan. Interestingly enough, I’m a member at the gym across the street and when the existing restaurant in the space closed due to Covid, I looked at it as an opportunity knowing that the area needed a place like this.
SL: Where did the concept come from?
TC: The concept of home cooked food made with the freshest ingredients with great customer service is timeless and will keep the customers coming back. This is what our food is all about!
SL: Share with our readers some of your favorite items on the menu.
TC: The rotisserie chicken, fried chicken, meatballs, and Philly Cheesesteak are some of my personal favorites, but, everything is delicious!
SL: The restaurant prides itself of the homestyle cooking. Can you expand on this?
TC: Almost everything we sell is made on premise except the cookies, cakes, and a few other items. There is a huge difference in flavor as well as being healthy as freshly prepared food as opposed to processed. The quality of food we serve at our price point makes us stand out and our customers happy. That is what it’s all about!
SL: We are quite impressed not only by the menu, but the cleanliness of the shop.
TC: I am a fanatic about keeping the store immaculately clean. My mother always says why would anyone go into a restaurant that isn’t spotless? You can see me every morning cleaning the windows and the entire place. My basement is swept and mopped daily.
SL: Will there be any other Louie’s Chicken expanding across Manhattan or the country?
TC: Yes, we are already looking at opening two to three other locations in Manhattan and then expanding nationally.
SL: Do you see the hospitality business making a big comeback?
TC: People are itching to go out. Hospitality will be back stronger than ever!
SL: We know you’re very philanthropic. Share with our readers some of the organizations or acts of kindness that you partake in.
TC: We have donated to numerous causes since we have opened. We support the local police and fire department of course but also the Sutton Place Parks Conservancy, The African Children’s Choir, Turtle Bay Association, the Sutton Area Community and we will continue to support various organizations.
SL: Thank you for speaking with me. I look forward to speaking with you again.
TC: It’s my pleasure and look forward to speaking with you again.
Louie’s Chicken NYC
1026 2nd Avenue
New York, NY 10022