Popeyes’ fried chicken sandwich is still making headlines, but there’ll be a new crispy bird in town when Roy Boys opens in Navy Yard on Friday. The second location of the fried chicken-and-oyster joint is nearly identical to the Shaw original and takes over the former Justin’s Cafe space.
Diners in the 60-seat restaurant can expect a twin menu with fresh-shucked local oysters as well as barbecued bivalves, oysters Rockefeller, shooters, and even an oyster-y gin martini mixed with shellfish brine. Crispy chicken sandwiches come classic, Nashville-hot, club-style with avocado and bacon, and beyond. For dessert check out the ice cream tacos—a variety of flavors stuffed in a waffle shell.
Drinks from beverage director Frank Mills get creative with ingredients like activated charcoal (find it in the Black Excellence with organic Blackleaf vodka, beet juice, and honey-ginger syrup). One beverage that’s new to the list is hoppy Racer 5 IPA, a nod to the location’s former identity as Justin’s Cafe.
“People kept asking for it and asking for it,” says co-owner Scott Parker. “So we did decide to keep that on tap for all the neighborhood people that requested it.”
Another new addition is a fresh batch of hip-hop-inspired art. While the original location pays homage to Notorious B.I.G. and Tupac (not without initial controversy), the new Roy Boy’s proximity to Nationals Park plays into the decor. Missy Elliot dons a Nationals jersey in a painting alongside Rick Ross and Eminem. On a neon sign, Biggie Smalls lyrics “It was all a dream” get the Nats treatment with a “W” in glowing red.
The restaurant will open for dinner first and will serve late-night food and drink until 2 AM on weekends. Lunch and brunch coming soon.
Roy Boys 2. 1025 1st St., SE.