Friday, May 21, 2010

Rodney's Of Willcox

Location: Willcox, AZ

With only 2769 residents, Willcox still manages to be the home of the "The Arizona Cowboy" Rex Allen Museum (right across the street from the burial site of his horse, KoKo), the Friends of Marty Robbins Museum (an unofficial Fanseum, run as a labor of love by Marty's "Biggest Fan," whose website offers you the choice of "Home Page," "Page 3," "2010 Flyer," and "Links". But don't try to get to the Flyer; the page is blank) and a great BBQ joint in an old railroad car. Yet even with all this embarrassment of abundance, it manages to have one more surprise, nestled between the two museums on Willcox's only cross street: Rodney's.

When you walk up to Rodney's, be sure to read the menu on the board out front. You need to know what you want before you go in, because once you go in Rodney will be ready (or maybe not) to take your order from the counter in front of the stoves and fryers, and he seems to feel that there's no sense putting another copy of the menu inside when there is a perfectly good one outside.

There is no immediately obvious seating in Rodney's, but you soon find out you do have a choice -- after you grab your drink from the cooler outside the side door, you can either sit on the patio, nestled between the tan and brick buildings, or proceed to the tables that are in the brick building.

We chose the patio, where we were afraid the seats were going to collapse which was in need of some repair , and had a pleasant lunch in the shade. Of course we then had to check out the restaurant.

There is a note on the door directing the hungry mobs to go next door to order. I can just picture the folks who didn't read the note (they probably also thought they'd get a menu inside) hopelessly anticipating the arrival of their wait-person until they collapse in a dessicated pile of flesh and bones, not knowing that said wait-person is Rodney, who is too busy castigating other patrons for their expectation of a menu once they got inside.

We go in to find that no one else has taken up Rodney on the eating-inside thing. But it means we can look around, for there is a lot to see.

Two rooms, the first with mismatched chairs and tablecloths, and lots and lots of autographed photos on the wall. Very few were autographed to Rodney or showed any indication that they had eaten here, but that seemed beside the point. On the back wall was an entrance to the second room, draped from above with a large American flag.

What we found there was some restaurant equipment, and a seating area with a floral sofa, a striped sofa, and six televisions: all on, and all on different channels. We were unsure if we were invited to sit on the sofa and watch TV, or if this was entertainment for Rodney while his customers consulted the menu. We chose to discretely leave instead, and head over to the two museums. More on them later.


Paul said...

If you get chance and are doing daytrips, check our blog post in March of 2008.

We visited Chiricahua National Monument and then made another stop in Willcox.

Sharon said...

And wasn't Rodney's food good! That was a fun day.