Darryl’s is back where it belongs

Elevation Theory recently performing at Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen. Elevation Theory recently performing at Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen. (Aram Boghosian for The Boston Globe)
By Devra First
Globe Staff / January 21, 2011

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DARRYL’S CORNER BAR & KITCHEN 604 Columbus Ave., Boston


Bob the Chef’s was a South End institution, serving its famous “glorifried’’ chicken with a side of jazz to one of the most diverse crowds in Boston. It began its decades-long run as a hole-in-the-wall diner and ended it with more style, as the renamed Bob’s Southern Bistro. Owner Darryl Settles, a founder of the BeanTown Jazz Festival, sold Bob’s in 2007.

But new incarnations didn’t stick. Circle, an upscale French restaurant, lasted two months; a successor, the Stork Club, made it almost a year.

So it was a relief to see the new signage announcing yet another reopening: Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen. The restaurant and bar is back in Settles’s hands, and much is again as it was. There is live jazz. The kitchen serves dishes including crab cakes, catfish, jambalaya, and collard greens. And, says Settles, “we still have one of the most diverse clientele in the city. Entertainers, poor people, wealthy people, academics, and politicians are here on a day-to-day basis.’’

Chef Tim Partridge, formerly of restaurants including Perdix and Bouchée, designed the new menu, which is executed by the kitchen managers at Darryl’s. In addition to soul food favorites, it features new items such as roasted haddock with chorizo and corn chowder (Settles’s favorite, he says) and steak taco platters for the table to share.

Darryl’s Corner Bar & Kitchen also offers cocktails like the South End Sour (gin, lime, and simple syrup) and the Boston Girlfriend (Absolut Boston, pomegranate liqueur, lime, and cranberry juice). The place is joyously loud, as people of all ages and races gather to drink, eat, and listen to musicians from Berklee, New England Conservatory, and beyond. It’s a warm scene, and there’s only one thing missing.

The glorifried chicken will be back on the menu within the month.