Down the Road

Roads and life and how roads are like life

The Indiana Fried Chicken Tour: Marble’s Southern Cookery

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The sixth stop on our chicken quest again kept Sherrel and I close to my northwest Indianapolis home as we visited Marble’s Southern Cookery at 2310 Lafayette Road. Marble’s is open only Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, so plan your visit accordingly. We arrived at around 1 pm on a Sunday and found the place moderately busy, but by the time we left the line was almost out the door. The place is popular!

Marble’s is a cafeteria, which isn’t everybody’s cup of tea. But the line was efficient and fast, and every last person working the line at Marble’s had a giant smile on their face. The woman at the cash register danced gently to a song playing in her head. Marble’s must be a good place to work! And in no time flat, we had our food and were on our way. As we sat down with our trays, I noticed that while Marble’s interior is spare, it was clean and pleasantly decorated in earth tones with coordinating wall art.

The fried chicken looked beautiful. The pieces were gigantic and golden. The coating was crunchy but, unfortunately, sometimes tough. I detected salt and pepper in the mildly seasoned coating; I would have liked to taste more of both. The meat within was juicy but plain, so it seems that Marble’s doesn’t marinate or brine their chicken before frying. Based on mouth feel, I’d say the chicken was fried in vegetable oil. We prefer lard. Well, let me be clear – the pleasure centers in my brain prefer lard, but my body would be happier if I had a salad instead. But the Tour is all about the total chicken experience, and Sherrel and I think lard provides it best. But Marble’s fried this chicken just right, leaving just the right amount of fat in the coating to create that “ohhhhhh….” moment when you bite in.

Sherrel ordered greens and macaroni and cheese as his sides, and he had lots good to say about both. The macaroni and cheese got his highest praise – he called it buttery, creamy, and very cheesy. He wished he had ordered more. He liked the greens almost as much, calling them tender and nicely seasoned. As always, I ordered mashed potatoes with gravy and green beans. The mildly seasoned green beans had bits of carrot, onion, potato, and red pepper in it – novel and interesting. I was unenthusiastic about the mashed potatoes. They were smooth and had little flavor, but did have decent body. A crust had formed around the edges, which suggests they may have sat under warming lights a little too long. The neon-yellow gravy was thin and added very little flavor.

Because I ordered both dark and white meat chicken, I walked out of Marble’s very, very full. The bill came to just under $16 including a soda (served in a can), which was in line with the sheer amount of food I consumed.

Other southern and soul-food stops on the Tour
include Missisippi Belle and Kountry Kitchen.

13 thoughts on “The Indiana Fried Chicken Tour: Marble’s Southern Cookery

    1. Jim Post author

      Sherrel and I were wondering what chicken would taste like fried in bacon grease. You’d have to fry up an awful lot of bacon to get enough grease to find out. The experiment might just shave two years off the end of your life, but it would be intense pleasure while it lasted.

  1. Lone Primate

    What the coyote! Are you eating fried chicken again? Good gravy, Jim! I’m starting to think your interest in the old roads of the upper Midwest is just an excuse to raid the coops. :D

    I had two pieces of toast with quark and blueberries on them this morning so that my girlish figure doesn’t get any MORE girlish. Why don’t you ever write about stuff like THAT? :)

    These reviews remind me of my friend’s little self-published music ‘zine we all used to write for. We used to do things like order pizza from a half dozen different places, or sit down and get ‘faced on a dozen beers, and then pass judgement on them in the photocopied pages. We never did homestyle restaurants, but nevertheless it takes me back. :)

    1. Jim Post author

      Lest you think I eat this way all the time — these fried-chicken stops are definitely a special case in my diet. Now that I’m in my 40s I just can’t put away food like this all the time anymore! I had two scrambled eggs and a banana for breakfast this morning. Lunch will be some vegetables or maybe some oatmeal. Very boring.

  2. Scott Palmer

    A fried-chicken stop would have to be a special case for me, too. But that place sounds great, and it’s not even too far away for a lunch hour. I’ll give it a try. Thanks!

  3. Mike

    Don’t think I’d like to eat that gravy, but it looks like it might be useful for squeaky door hinges. Might be good for rheumatism too, though I think I’d want to test it on the mother-in-law first.

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