The minute we stepped out of the car onto Rocky's parking lot, I knew I was in trouble. The delicious fragrance of chicken being deep fried wafted through the air, putting my taste buds on high alert. Inside, I dutifully scanned the menu for something that wasn't fried, but by then I was hopelessly in the grip of an overpowering urge to sink my teeth into something that was fried. Every fiber of my being was screaming for that incomparable taste and texture, fueled by the heady aromas that had assailed my nostrils the moment I had opened the car door.
|The chicken that led me into temptation.|
When I spotted a menu item touting chicken featuring a sweet-hot crispy coating, I was done for. Like a bird dog on point, my attention never wavered from that one selection. It sounded soooo good. It was all my naughty fried chicken fantasies come true. Ignoring every health dictum about high cholesterol and stifling a mental image of my frowning cardiologist, I eagerly placed my order: a plate with two thighs, fried okra (hey, as long as I was sinning, I might as well take it to the max) and sweet potato casserole with a slab of cornbread on the side.
When they brought the food out, I couldn't believe my eyes. On the oversized plate were two of the biggest pieces of chicken I had ever seen. They were so massive they looked like thighs from a 30 pound turkey. A restaurant employee had forewarned us about the portion sizes prior to our placing our orders, but I had taken the information with a grain of salt. I should have listened to him.
When I sank my teeth into that chicken, it was like fireworks exploding on the Fourth of July with a visit from Publisher's Clearinghouse thrown in. The taste was beyond delicious. It was oh-my-god-don't-let-it-end-super-freaking-awesome. Never, in all my life, have I had fried chicken that tasted that good. This wasn't fried chicken; it was a religious experience on a plate. I ate the whole thing -- every single bit of it. Bless me, Father, for I have sinned......and would do it all over again without a shred of remorse. It was worth every. single. decadent. mouthful. I might burn in hell for my gluttony and for the horrors inflicted on my arteries, but I don't care.
It's a darned good thing we don't live in Asheville. I'd be slinking over to Rocky's on a weekly basis. Just knowing the place was within a few minutes' drive would be enough to do me in. I'd be like a drug addict whose life is totally focused on getting his next fix. Oh yeah, Rocky's corrupted me, all right. Every time I think of that glorious goodness, that melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness, I get weak in the knees and start salivating like one of Pavlov's dogs. The only antidote I have for this insatiable craving is holing up in my studio and concentrating on my art. It's impossible for me to focus on fried chicken and design and composition at the same time. Thank goodness there's something that can take my mind off Rocky's.
If you ever find yourself in Asheville, take my advice and avoid Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack like the plague. It's in West Asheville at 1455 Patton Avenue. You're much better off not knowing what you're missing, but if you do go, call me. We'll start a Rocky's Chicken support group.
Text and image ©2014 Lynn Edwards