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samtalbot_offduty.jpgEach week in our Chefs Off Duty series, we talk to some of our favorite chefs and industry folk around the country to find out their secret late-night spots where they like to grab a bite and a pint when their kitchens are finally closed. Next up: Sam Talbot, chef and Top Chef alum who's been busy working on a cookbook for kids called The Lunch Pail, finishing a new secret project in Montauk slated to bow this summer and teaming up with Thorny Rose wines on recipe pairings and roving wine-centric dinners.

Where do you like to go eat when you leave the kitchen?

I try to eat healthy but I have a secret vice: Pies 'n' Thighs. I grew up in the Carolinas so that chicken biscuit with honey butter...yeah. 

How long have you been going there?

I think probably six months. I remember eight or nine years ago when I had a restaurant in Williamsburg called the Williamsburgh Cafe right on N. 7th and Wythe -- that's how I found [the original]. I think I was walking the dog and I walked by the [new] restaurant and I started asking around and people were like, "Oh, yeah. It's amazing, it's amazing, it's amazing." And I read the menu and was like, "Oh my gosh." And now my mother loves it, my friends love it. 

Aside from the chicken biscuits, what else do you like to order there?

The fried pickles are really good.

pnt-pies-and-thighs.JPGDo you have a favorite pie or doughnut?

I'm a diabetic so you can't throw me under the bus like that! [Laughs] But I've been known to venture in that direction before, sure. They have a really good apple pie. I just try not to order [in] -- it's one thing if I can walk there, at least I'm getting exercise before but if I order and they bring it to me, then it's gluttonous. Then I'm cooked.

Any fun Pies 'n' Thighs anecdotes you can share?

I get a lot of text messages from people that say, "Hey, 'so-and-so [celebrity]' is in there right now. Will you walk by and see?" I'm like, "No!" That's happened at least three different times with three different people. [People asked me if] Ryan Gosling was sitting in Pies 'n' Thighs and if I'd go look. I told them that the only reason I'm looking was because I was walking my dog by the place but, sure, I looked. Someone else texted me, "Hey, Madonna's in Pies 'n' Thighs. Will you go look?" And I'm like, "Absolutely not." It's a routine thing. People seem to think that big celebrities are always hanging out at Pies 'n' Thighs.

Pies 'n' Thighs, 166. S. 4th St., Brooklyn; Mon-Fri, 9am-midnight; Sat-Sun, 10am-midnight; Closed 4pm-5pm

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