The Big Chicken dominates the Cobb Parkway strip in Marietta, its goggled eyes visible from a mile away, peering over inferior competitor signage. Stanley R. “Tubby” Davis' vision for the 56-foot-tall bird, which was originally built in 1963 as Johnny Rebs Chick-Chuck-'N'-Shake, was to build something as high as possible to attract customers. The chicken was designed as an abstraction for practicality and economy reasons — it's basically a huge corrugated steel flange painted red.
Of course, there were extras like rolling eyes, a beak that opened and closed, and a comb that moved in the breeze. However, every window in the restaurant shattered when the motor for these features was first turned on. The chicken became a goofy, motionless giant because no one could figure out how to dampen the vibrations.
The Big Chicken was taken over by Kentucky Fried Chicken in 1974. Colonel Sanders himself visited the Big Chicken and ordered it demolished, according to one of the many newspaper clippings displayed inside the restaurant; he believed that KFC should be promoting him, not a chicken. Only after learning that the Marietta restaurant was the busiest did the Colonel relent.
The chicken had already survived several near-death experiences before that. When the old Marietta lease expired in 1989, KFC secretly offered to demolish the chicken and relocate it to a new location in neighboring Smyrna. When the citizens of Marietta learned of the deal, they staged a populist uprising, and the chicken stayed.
The Big Chicken's menu is a time capsule of Americana circa the 1980s. The burgers are thin and well-done, but if you want an old style meal, order a fried chicken plate with mashed potatoes and coleslaw or country ham biscuits.
Old timers swear by the double patty bacon cheeseburger topped with lettuce, tomato, pickles and mayonnaise all on one bun (you can also ask for it to be grilled). If that doesn't sound like your thing, try the fully loaded Southern-style potato skins — baked skin covered in butter hot pepper cheese sauce served with sour cream and bacon bits. Ask about their daily specials because they're always changing up what's available depending on seasonal ingredients.
The Big Chicken also has a full bar with local drafts and cocktails. There are 12 beers on tap, five wines by the glass, and a wine list that changes out every few months depending on what's in season. The staff is knowledgeable about all of them, so feel free to ask for their suggestions if you're not sure where to start
Country Fried Steak, Chicken Fingers and Tenders with Honey Mustard Sauce
The Big Chicken is best known for its country fried steak sandwich. This battered hunk of breaded goodness comes on a toasted bun slathered in white gravy and served with fries or onion rings. It's as filling as it sounds — one sandwich might be enough for two people if you're not hungry. But the meal gets even better when you add marinated onions, melted cheese and peppers from their side menu (they offer up an option called “Hot Mama”) to your order. The chicken fingers are also worth checking out: they come in meaty-sized pieces that never get too soggy inside their crispy coating; they're lightly seasoned and served with honey mustard sauce.
Grabbing a quick bite on your lunch break, satisfying the kiddos' after-school hunger pangs and fueling up before you head out for happy hour at one of Cobb's many nearby watering holes. Don't forget to come back late in the evening when it serves classic diner fare, like burgers and fries or chicken pot pie.
The Big Chicken is a restaurant in New York City that specializes in fried chicken. They have every kind of meal imaginable, including some unusual ones like their “Fried Sea Creature” dish which features calamari and octopus with lemon garlic sauce as well as a selection of sides to choose from. All the dishes are served up on white trays for maximum presentation effect. This place has been around since 2003 so they must be doing something right! If you find yourself near this eatery during your next visit to NYC, it might be worth checking out what all the hype is about!
Marietta, Georgia is blessed with some of Georgia’s most picturesque landmarks. Here’s our list of the best of the best you shouldn’t miss:
- Strand Theatre
- The Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art
- The Marietta Museum of History
- The Marietta Gone with the Wind Museum
- The William Root House Museum and Garden
- Marietta Square
- Brumby Hall and Gardens
- Marietta National Cemetery
These amazing schools are located just down the street from our location at 2909 Austell Road SW, Suite 112. Stop by for a visit anytime!