Kenny Rogers Roasters

2005/05/28 16:55:36
I miss that place so much. There used to be quite a few in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area but then one day they were just gone. Anyone have any idea of what happened to the chain?
Michael Hoffman
Double-chop Porterhouse
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/05/28 17:11:09
Originally posted by startrooper00

I miss that place so much. There used to be quite a few in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area but then one day they were just gone. Anyone have any idea of what happened to the chain?

It is now owned by Nathan's and they have restaurants in Alabama, California, Florida, Idaho and Maryland.
Ort. Carlton.
Filet Mignon
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/05/28 17:16:02
They quit roastin'.
Maybe it was because Reuben James died or because Marianne Gordon, Kenny's ex, owned a chunk of it or maybe due to somethin' else - I dunno.
The first two stores were here in Athens... one on Atlanta Highway and the other on Gaines School Road on the Eastside. The Eastside one closed first, then the Westside one not long after that. I haven't seen one anywhere in a goodly while.
I'll never forget the little old country lady in a thrift store who very deliberately told me that his name was actually Kenny Roger and that the restaurant should be "spelt" "Kenny Roger's Roasters." I reckon that's 'cause it was "hi's" - don't'ye s'pose.
Abruptly, Ort. Carlton in Smiling Athens, Georgia.
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/05/28 17:17:36
Our local one was 86'd a few years ago... Thats OK, first Donatos took over the building, then after they packed their bags, a local Mexican eatery took it over... Just keeps getting better!
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/06/04 07:20:52
I liked Kenny Rogers roasters.I drove a tractor trailer for Sysco foods back in the early 90s,and I delivered to many of them ,and they were all clean,very professionally run and had good food.I think they suffered the same fate as Boston Market,it's the same food you made at home,and people like to eat things out that they would most likely not make at home(ok,I know your mother would most likely not wood fire roast a chicken,but it is basically roasted chicken).I think many people,not all,but many people eat out at fast food places and eat burgers,fries,pizza etc because they crave the greasy junk food experience.I liked Kenny Rogers roasters way more than Boston Market,and wished they were still around here.I have first hand experience having owned a fried chicken and rib restaurant that also sold smoked rotisserie roasted chicken that was delicious.We sold 10 times more fried chicken than we did roasted and both were delicious,and obviously the roasted was healthier,but people like that sinfully delicious fried chicken better.We eventually discontinued selling the rotisserie chicken which was fine by me it was more time consuming to prepare,and the rotiserie was a pain in the
a$% to keep clean.My henny penny pressure fryers pumped out 40 pieces of chicken each every 15 minutes,and sometimes on busy nights we could not keep up,I miss that place.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/06/04 08:50:19
I also miss this place! There used to be one situated on the periphery of the Cherry Hill Mall here in South Jersey. We went there quite often when we lived in Pennsauken. One thing that I won't forget is the aroma, which I can only call "the camping smell". It was great and I really liked everything in there. This store closed without warning and turned into some sort of Italian specialties place. That lasted about a minute, and then it turned into one of those Halloween stores. Now I have no idea what that building is.

However, Michael Hoffman's post gave me hope, as Maryland is not far, really, and maybe they'll expand to this region. That would be great, especially paired with Nathan's. I don't mind Nathan's paired with Arthur Treacher's, but Kenny Rogers - actually they couldn't really do it in a mall, I don't think. Well, this area is always being developed more and more (sometimes for the better), so we'll see.

Boston Market really needs the competition in this area (personally I find them to be foul)!
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/06/07 13:32:12
I used to eat at the Kenny Rogers Roasters here in Dalton, Ga. at least once a week when it was in business. Seems as if they had a tasty and inexpensive dinner with a good sweet yellow corn muffin (I don't even like sweet or yellow cornbread). Some sort of good green beans and garlicky, buttery new potatoes come to mind also....
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/06/07 13:45:56
we had a kenney rogers roasterhere in beaverton oregon a while a go. and lots of boston markets. now that are all gone. i DID like the convenience of just picking up a pretty yummy roasted bird to take home and serve with my own sides or over a caesar salad or something....
you CAN get the chickens from the supermarkets, all cooked for you, but it's not as good. too bad.
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/06/30 17:07:04
I have never eaten at a Kenny Rogers Roasters but I did recently see a rerun of the Seinfeld episode where Kramer wants to shut them down, then becomes addicted to the chicken.
Junior Burger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/05 07:44:20
There used to be one here in Williamsville (suburb of Buffalo) about 12 years ago. Only lasted a year or two. I found it similar to Boston Market which was a mile down the road and also closed.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/05 10:11:38
Ours is now a Chik-Fil-A, has been for years. I recall their chicken being pretty good, the aroma being incredible. The best place now to get roasted chicken is the lemon pepper at Publix.
Junior Burger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/17 17:32:20
Oh man yeah did I love this stuff. I used to drive way out of my way to stop at the only one that I knew existed, south of Akron OH. Not only did they have the best chicken in my opinion but they also had the best cornbread, and I am not a cornbread fan. I would take home a dozen of those little cornbreads each time I stopped by. They were so moist and sweet and had actual corn nuggets in them. If anyone would like to see if one of these wonderful roasters is still open in their area check out the website at
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/18 07:36:46
The KR's in Charlotte became a Boston Market and the Mai's Japanese Robato. Now best Japanese place in NC.
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/20 12:14:44
FWIW, Jim Rome has been referring to Texas Rangers pitcher Kenny Rogers as "The Roaster" on his show.
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/29 02:18:48
I used to like the one in Appleton Wisconsin but that too went by the wayside. Now its an Arbys.
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/29 02:56:34
My theory is that the supermarket rotisserie chicken is killing Kenny Roger's chicken. Cockfighing, if you will. The supermarket stuff is cheaper and easier, and no one wants to eat Kenny's nasty veggies anyway. And what's an MSG rub among friends?
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/07/31 23:43:03
What killed Boston Market and Kenny Rogers roasters is that is What you cook at home,which equals Boring for many people.Most people want fast food(greasy, sinfully unhealthy etc.) or a nice dining experience when they go out to eat ,or are eating on the run.When they first opened up,Boston market,and Kenny Rogers were a novelty,but the fact of the matter is most people talk more about eating healthy,than they actually do.I have been in the food service industry in many different areas,from a supplier,to restaurant owner,which one of the restaurants I owned was a chicken and rib place.We offered great flame roasted chicken along with our fried chicken,and we sold 10 times more fried chicken,to the point where we discontinued the rotisserie chicken.One thing to consider when buying rotisserie chicken from a supermarket(this was told to me by one of the largest poultry suppliers on the east coast)Is that a product that is going out of date in it's raw form(chicken,meat etc.)becomes a new product once it is cooked and repackaged,which basically means supermarkets cook the old chicken that did not sell when it was packaged in the case,and it becomes a new product when cooked and doubles the life of the product,this was from a person well versed in the industry,I have no evidence of this myself,but it makes economic sense.
Junior Burger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/08/03 14:38:40
There was only one in our area of Maryland, and that one is in Laurel.

I just googled them and it appears to be the only one existing in the US.
TJ Jackson
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/08/03 14:45:24
Is anyone close by the Laurel maryland location?

If so, how about a report? :-) with pics, preferrably?
Junior Burger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/08/26 16:12:19
I can verify that the Laurel Kenny Rogers Roasters is still in existance. I have eaten there a couple times recently and the food is still wonderfully great. I live close to the area, so the next time that I go past the restaurant, I will snap a pic and post it. I believe it is a franchise restaurant, and that is why it is still open. I do have some history with the restaurant chain, I did work for them in the late 90's as a cook and server and then a manager. It is great to see there is such a following still out there for wood fire roasted chicken......its the wood that makes it good!
Route 11
Double Cheeseburger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/09/01 23:30:03
I've never had Kenny's chicken.
When the "Seinfeld" episode debuted, the Nashville location had already closed down. The next day I took a carload of friends over there and we freaked that the joint had been shuttered.
But, oh those Vandys. One of the sororities wrote lamentation's about Kenny's demise all over the windows.
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/09/02 02:45:39
Tried Kenny's chicken when they first came to Dallas years ago and loved the stuff and his sides... tender, juicy and cooked "just right"... then one day I got an order that was horribly undercooked...
not good... never went back (Kramer be damned!!!).
Junior Burger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/10/27 11:45:31
There's a Kenny Rogers Roasters in Henderson, Nevada. I also thought they were all gone until I food this one while I was out driving. It's so good. (Henderson is just southeast of the Las Vegas Strip.)
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/10/29 20:05:01
There used to be one in Lexington, KY outside Turfland Mall. I worked practically right next to it, and they gave the GTE employees 15% discounts. The chicken, as I recall, was quite good.

There was one here in Jackson, MS. The better half said it was good when they first opened. But, like most all restaurants in this area, the quality of the food deterioriated and the restaurant was closed. Since I have lived here, the location was a Greek restaurant for a while, and is now a Mexican restaurant.
Fire Safety Admin
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/11/04 05:45:58
Fresno had one for a short time but it only lasted a very few months and closed literally overnight. The employees were totally stumped and so were a lot of patrons. It became a big deal and Kenny himself wound up addressing the issue. Basically he had licensed his name and didn't have much control, if any, over the operations of the franchises. He apoliged to the employees and the citizens of Fresno but there wasn't anything else he could do.

I never have eaten there.

Junior Burger
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/11/09 21:54:23
I was shocked to pass by the Roasters in Laurel, Maryland and found it closed down. Apparently it had been gone for a couple of weeks.

I didn't realize that there were such few locations around the country... don't understand it... it is so good (the supermarket junk just don't compare).
I loved it all - the rotisserie, the bread and the veggies.

I also liked their fried seafood offerings (big fan of Long John's Silver, too... can't find any of those either)

I just didn't know how fortunate I was to live 5 minutes away...
RE: Kenny Rogers Roasters 2005/11/09 22:23:20
I never understood the appeal. Did not like their food much.