Thursday, April 01, 2010

The Chicken King

In the photo above is the staf f plus one of Pollo Doc. From left to right Annalisa, Dominica, Ginella, Giusepina, Massimo (owner), his wife Giusy, and their son Piergiuseppe.

There are times when I really do not feel like cooking. Sometimes when I do not feel like cooking, I go to one of the restaurants, La Vela, Hostoria del Viccolo, or even Bar Charley. However, sometimes I treat myself to spit roasted chicken. When I do this, I go to see the King of Chicken in Sciacca, Massimo, and his wife, the Queen of Lasagna, Giusy. Together they run Pollo Doc in the La Perriera section of Sciacca.

While there are five or six places to get spit roasted chicken in Sciacca, there is only one King of Chicken, and that is indeed Massimo. Not only does he know his job of cooking chicken well, he also knows customer relations. He always has a smile for me, and when he learned that Fran had died, he let me know that I could get just half of one of his chickens if I wanted. Half is just about right for a good meal, some bones for stock, and some left overs to go with the stock or to make chicken salad.

Massimo told me that his roaster will hold sixty chickens at a time, and on any given day he cooks at least 150 chickens in it. He also roasts his home made boneless chicken rolls, rabbits, and some other things in there. They come out well seasoned, moist, and delicious.

His wife oversees the kitchen as they prepare other dishes for the customers. There are hot roast beef slices, hot turkey slices, fresh boiled carrots, peas, beans, spinach, swiss chard, broccoli, cauliflower, or whatever else might be fresh. You can also get breaded and deep fried mushrooms, carciofi (artichoke bulbs), garduni (artichoke stems), cauliflower, broccoli, and eggplant. There are also chicken involentini, and a host of other dishes, all made with the freshest ingredients possible. Then there are the
prepared chicken wings, drum sticks, pork ribs, chicken fingers, and on and on and on and on.

Giusy is also the Queen of Lasagna here, as far as I am concerned. A lot of folks make a great pasta al forno, and I like them all. But she is the one I go to when I have a hankering for lasagna. Oh my, it is so good, and a single portion lasts me for two meals. There are also a few types of pasta al forno, and occasionally they make eggplant Parmesan. It is all good. So good.

Of course, if you need wine or soda or water to go with your meal, they have a nice selection of Sicilian wines and soda for you to choose from. They were the first folks I knew who stocked wines from the Calatrasi cantina in San Ciporella, which is one of the cantinas Fran and I particularly liked. You can also get bread, which is of course delivered fresh daily.

As an example of the excellent team that Massimo and Giusy have put together, when I got there at eight in the morning, just as the folks were arriving for the day's work, they all started their tasks in the spotless kitchen. When Massimo found out that one of the women was not feeling well, he rushed her off to the emergency room to be checked over. One of the other women started crying, because she was so worried about her co-worker. She came back an hour later, and someone had spitted the chicken for Massimo to cook, so pranzo, while it might be a little late, would be available for everyone. Everyone there is friendly to me, and they do a marvelous job of wading through my think American accent. These are folks who know good customer relations.

Excuse me, I think that the rice I cooked in home made chicken stock with fresh peas and leftover chicken is ready. I need to put this aside for now.


Blogger Gary said...

Oh I miss giarosta! Loved it when I lived in Sicily!

1:23 AM  

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