Your Guide to Authentic Regional Eats
Sign In | Register for Free!
Restaurants Recipes Forums Eating Tours Merchandise FAQ Maps Insider

Keaton's

17365 Cool Springs Rd, Cleveland, NC - (704) 278-1619
Posted By Keith Smith on 7/27/2005 10:54:00 PM
Thirty years ago, I lived and worked in close proximity to Keaton's, and ate there regularly. After moving to New England, I found I really missed that unique BBQ burn. We made sure that we ate at Keaton's on every return trip to the Carolinas. The elder Mr. Keaton was a wonderful gentleman with a great sense of humor. He cooked for his customers and was aware of their preferences. We are so pleased that his heirs are continuing this fine Southern tradition. My wife and I had our first serious date at Keaton's and we still consider it a treat to eat there.

This, without question, is the finest BBQ chicken that the good Lord has ever allowed me to taste! The taste is hot (I call it two-beer-hot), but not too much so. The elder Mr. Keaton used to say, "It's too hot for the children today". It gives your mouth an afterglow. The chicken is always tender. I prefer mine a little crispy on the outside (if it's not a little crispy, just ask and they will crisp it up for you).

At one time you were served on a sheet of paper, with mini-beer bottles for salt and pepper shakers. The rest rooms were in the rear of the building. Today, you are still served on disposable paper and plastic products, but service now includes a paper plate, and there are store bought salt and pepper shakers. Nonetheless, the taste and country charm is still there. This chicken is always "5 stars", in my opinion.

14 out of 14 people found the review helpful. Was it helpful to you?

No Yes

Scorecard

5 - Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Rate this place
Keaton's chicken is unlike any other: slightly crisp, slightly caramelized, and shot through with the flavor of the house barbecue sauce. It is on our very short list of the nation's best.
"Keaton's chicken is unlike any other: slightly crisp, slightly caramelized, and shot through with the flavor of the house barbecue sauce. It is on our very short list of the nation's best."
Michael Stern





Keaton's excellent macaroni & cheese comes in smallish squares, with a slightly burnt top crust.
"Keaton's excellent macaroni & cheese comes in smallish squares, with a slightly burnt top crust."
Cliff Strutz


Keaton's was selling red velvet cake long before it enjoyed its 21st century vogue.
"Keaton's was selling red velvet cake long before it enjoyed its 21st century vogue."
Michael Stern


Meals arrive under wax paper. When the paper is removed, the aroma of the chicken envelops the table and will make you dizzy with hunger.
"Meals arrive under wax paper. When the paper is removed, the aroma of the chicken envelops the table and will make you dizzy with hunger."
Michael Stern


Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm good.
"Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm good."
Peter Roaman


This is where you order your food. Then sit down where you are told and behave yourself until it arrives.
"This is where you order your food. Then sit down where you are told and behave yourself until it arrives."
Michael Stern


From the outside, Keaton's doesn't look like one of America's best restaurants ... but it is!
"From the outside, Keaton's doesn't look like one of America's best restaurants ... but it is!"
Michael Stern


You'll need plenty of napkins when you eat Keaton's chicken. Every table is well-equipped.
"You'll need plenty of napkins when you eat Keaton's chicken. Every table is well-equipped."
Michael Stern


The main room.
"The main room."
Peter Roaman


Keaton's wood-paneled walls are covered with many rules of conduct.
"Keaton's wood-paneled walls are covered with many rules of conduct."
Michael Stern


Love a good sign.
"Love a good sign."
Peter Roaman


Road sign.
"Road sign."
Peter Roaman


We don't know what 'taste test' this sign refers to, but it must be a good one. The results are impeccable.
"We don't know what 'taste test' this sign refers to, but it must be a good one. The results are impeccable."
Michael Stern



What is Roadfood?  |   Submit Content  |   Privacy Policy  |   Contact Roadfood.com   Copyright - Roadfood.com