Calling this a separate restaurant is kind of misleading. It’s technically a Kenny Rogers Roasters Express, which is contained within a Nathan’s Famous, which in itself is contained within a food court, which isn’t contained within a shopping mall. It has terrible written all over it. From what we can tell, this is the only Kenny Rogers left in Manhattan, but this ain’t the KR of old. We ate at Mr. Rogers Roasters back in the mid-nineties at one of his joints on the UES, and despite being completely fucked up drunk, we seem to remember thinking that wood did indeed make it good. Judging from the strange placement inside of another establishment, we can only assume that some huge food organization took over Kenny Rogers and just kept the name–as God knows that Kenny Rogers name really has huge cache. There is no longer any wood involved in the cooking of the man’s chicken. There is no care involved. There’s nothing but disappointment and a strangely coincidental similarity between their overly seasoned chicken sandwich and that of McDonalds. Even Kenny has to know that it’s time to fold ’em. [MF]
705 8th Ave.