Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack (Palace)

PIC and I stopped for lunch at the Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack newly opened South Side location last week.

If you’re a regular CE reader, you know I’m a “heat sissy” when it comes to food. Don’t get me wrong, I like spice. Just not the kind that simultaneously clears your sinus and makes you cry.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

Rocky’s is all that and more, but thankfully they also serve excellent no-heat fried chicken and, new at the South location, Rotisserie Chicken.

Check out the mounted spice board before ordering. Call me a “Non Seeker” if you must. The only thing I was seeking after trying “Mild” was bread and milk to calm my tongue!

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

A lot of people don’t know that Rocky’s not only serves wine and has beer on sixteen taps, they also have . . .

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

a full ABC liquor license. That’s right! Chicken & Cocktails (pun intended)! Also notice the Wine Keeper bottom right below. Opened bottles are kept fresh by replacing air in the bottle with non-interactive gas.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

The moment we we walked in, I was impressed with the interior design. It pops with color and graphics. Credit for the concept goes to co-owner, Lauren Cundiff. The gal behind the counter told me staff affectionately call the place Rocky’s Hot Chicken Palace because it’s so nice.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

A favorite graphic:

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

Another design element that’s fun and works well is the “Coop” that can be closed off for private parties.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

We sat outside on the large patio. What a great space! Plenty of seating and it kept us dry when the rain started.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

According to co-owner Rich Cundiff, Rocky himself has retired from the business (surprised me!), but stops by the South Side location often to make sure the chicken is up to par. He may also be on hand to play when future live music on the patio begins.

The Tender Plate ($10) comes with two sides of your choice. I went with Corn Pudding and Sweet Potato Casserole. It’s the only boneless chicken on the menu. There’s an argument for bone-in chicken for better flavor, but I was in a fork & knife mood. Honey Mustard dipping sauce is in the little container.

My take on flavor? Excellent! Juicy inside, crispy outside. The Corn Pudding was good, but I think I’d like creamed corn better. The Sweet Potato Casserole was delicious, standing in for dessert.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

PIC is always looking for a good Chicken Pot Pie ($8.50) and Rocky’s was a hit. Theirs has lots of chicken chunks and veggies in a flavorful, creamy sauce.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

Pot Pies are made to order, taking about 15 minutes. It’s worth the wait.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

Take your heat a bit too far and need help? There’s a special place for you outside.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

Note the attention to detail, even in the parking lot. The Cundiffs, who are a little OCD according to Rich, included classic landscaping of the parking lot in their build-out.

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

Rocky's Hot Chicken Shack

 Epicurean Notes:

  • Exterior signage was done by well-known local metal artist, David Earl Tomlinson, of Dynamic Metalwork
  • All desserts are made in-house.

I’m tempted to call it Skyland rather than South Asheville, but  Rocky’s is a great new addition to Sweeten Creek Road. Easy to get to from Fletcher, Arden and Asheville.

A summer picnic-type meal of fried chicken, sides and a drink to go or on the patio, listening to live music is calling!

Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack
3749 Sweeten Creek Rd
Asheville, NC
(828) 676-3222

Rockys Hot Chicken Shack on Urbanspoon

3 Responses to Rocky’s Hot Chicken Shack (Palace)

  1. That chicken pot pie certainly did look like it was worth a 15 minute wait– yum! I haven’t had a good chicken pot pie in a long time, so that definitely just set off a new craving for me. Haven’t been to Rocky’s yet, but this post was more than enough to get me thinking chicken. I am a fan of spicy food (within reason), so I’m not sure what level (seeker or heat-seeker) that I’d go with.

    BTW – I couldn’t really make it out, but does it mention ghost chillies underneath heat seeker??

  2. I keep really wanting to like this place. I have tried it several times and something in their food destroys my stomach. Its gotta be the oil or something, BC I have never had trouble with spice. The mashed potatoes are not good, I think they changed the recipe. The mac and cheese is ok. The spice ratio is inconsistent: you are either dying or it has no spice. The atmosphere and workers are great, but I hate to say it, the food needs to be worked on.

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