"You can find your way across this country using burger joints the way a navigator uses stars." Charles Kuralt

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Dodge’s Fried Chicken and Gasoline

Jo-Jo potato your life is calling.

Fried chicken and gasoline. For me, the very mention of this hickish, down-home combination invokes images of gun racks and chewing tobacco on a hot Saturday night. Personally, I wouldn’t have it any other way. Have you ever run low on gas while simultaneously suffering an unexpected craving for fried chicken and warm dinner rolls? Hey, who hasn’t? If so, get thee to a Dodge’s Chicken, pronto.
These days you find all sorts of food offerings at what are essentially filling stations. But not many specialize in fresh fried chicken. A regional chain, Dodge’s dots the landscape across the American Southeast. Brothers Henry and Bobby Dodge were looking to expand the service at their Tupelo Mississippi-based Savings Oil chain of gas stations. So, in 1976 the then 104 year-old company opened its first chicken store. Here you can find an assortment of light and dark meat, chicken strips, corn dogs, turkey drumsticks, burritos, taquitos, fried apple pies, and my personal favorite; Jo-Jo potatoes, which are pretty much just fried potato wedges. This particular Dodge's is in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Now, let me be clear about something. The place is a gas station. People pull in and out all day without ever going inside. Don’t make such a mistake. Inside is where the magic happens. The store itself isn’t particularly attractive, but it sure does smell good. Besides being a full service convenience store, Dodge’s serves up some of the best gas station fried chicken you’re liable to get just about anywhere. Captain Spaulding, eat your heart out.
On this particular occasion I went with the two-piece meal consisting of a breast, drumstick, two Jo-Jos and a dinner roll. While waiting for my chicken I inquired about the cool Dodge’s t-shirts the staff was wearing. I was disappointed to learn that they were not available for sale to the public here at the store. The staff gets them straight from corporate as uniforms. You can’t buy them online either. Dodge’s has no organized web presence that I can find, which is a shame because they’re missing out on a marketing goldmine.
The super-friendly woman at the counter wasn’t at all surprised by all of my questions, or by the fact that I was taking pictures all over the store. She said that happens a lot. Everybody seems to want to tell they’re non-believing friends and neighbors about the place where you can get fried chicken and gasoline.
I got my food and took it out to the car where I had to eat some right away while it was still hot. Prepared in pressure fryers just below the cigarette display, the chicken is crispy and juicy. I would have no problem feeding this to my family or recommending it to friends. The Jo-Jos are crunchy and soft the way a fried potato should be. The dinner roll is soft and warm.Dodge’s Fried Chicken is proof positive that good things are all around. Now all they need to do is figure out a way to reuse all of that old fryer oil. With a little work and commitment they could add an extra pump and be a leader in the bio-diesel revolution. Either way, the chicken can’t be beat. For the novelty factor alone, Dodge’s is an experience that should not be missed. So pull in for $20 on pump five and a four piece with Jo-Jos and an apple pie. You know you want to.

52 comments:

Lyden said...

Man. Now I want some fried chicken.

klown said...

Saddle up the mule, ma. I's got to get me some friiiieed chicken!

chicken_girl_in_leland said...

Awesomely incredible commentary about the Dodge's Chicken Store!!!! Thank you for comin in and checkin us out -- We are very glad you came! As the Store Leader for the Dodge's Chicken Store in Leland, MS, I personally invite you to stop in and see us when you are in the area! We would love to have you!!! Thanks again!!!

Teri Ramsey

banginfood.com said...

We just came off vacation from Memphis, TN and Tupelo, MS and discovered Dodge's Chicken. Man!!! That is some good chicken. We kept getting the 2 spicy wings and a strip for $1.99 (And adding a burrito).
That is a great meal! I'm glad to know that someone else had bumped into Dodge's.

Anonymous said...

Hey I love Dodges Chicken, and have been trying to find some type of directory. Would anyone happen to know how to get a map of all their locations?
Thanks for any help.

Anonymous said...

haha i love havin a Dodge's here in Norfolk, VA only 5 minutes away. :)

Anonymous said...

there is a dodge's chicken store in Dunedin, Florida, the chicken is wonderful, BUT one of the female, the one with spiking black hair and has sparkles all over her eyes, which could fall into the food, VERY GROSS!! The employee is very rude and always trying to pick up men that she waits on! So if you go to that store, remember to go to a different cashier.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I am trying to find an email address for the owners of The Dodge Chicken Store or an email to the home office. A phone number where complaints can be heard. Any one know how to reach Henry or Bobby Dodge or the Home Office?? Thank You

Anonymous said...

Dodge's corporate phone number is 662-842-7525, and they are located in Tupelo, MS. Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your post, I'm trying to find an email address for any one in Home Office, alot of times when you call home office for a complaint, no one really cares or they do not respond. Thanks for your help.

Anonymous said...

Gatdam, I wish we had those kinda places here in Maryland... I could sure use some chicken while waiting for the gas to fill.

Bill said...

I totally agree the food at Dodge's is fantastic. the fried chicken and apple pastry things are incredible. I go to newport news virginia every year. I always stop @ the Dodge's on Jefferson ave. I have co-workers that were stationed in hamptonroads va & are familiar with Dodge's fried chicken & always ask me to bring them some back.

Anonymous said...

To the Anonymous that stated the home office didn't care about your complaints: you were unlucky enough to apparently have spoken with someone who was not above the rank of idiot. For that I appologize for them. Having worked for them for a couple of years, I know they do care about complaints. Please try again to be heard. Ask for either Henry or Bobby Dodge by calling 662-842-7525, writing them at 447 East Main Street, Tupelo, MS 38801, or emailing them at hdodge@dbims.com or bdodge@dbims.com. I hope you resolve your complaints.

Anonymous said...

Well I for one love the food! My momma works there and she brings me food everynight!! So,I love it and if you dnt like it then go some where else..thank you :)

Anonymous said...

Good food!! I find myself there almost everyday,especially when I'm getting ready to hit the highway. Give me a breast and 2 egg rolls. PLEASE!!! Service in Clarksville is great but they can do without the manager or they could start to lose business.

Anonymous said...

I recently visited the Dodge Store in Hot Springs, Ar and I had a horrible visit. We love the food but witnessed the general manager of the place cursing at the employees. I was wanting to get some chciken but this lady starts cursing and I said all I wanted was some chicken and she said my child couldn't have any either and said she wasn't servicing me because I was black and there was nothing I could do because her husband ran the place. Now what does me having to be black mean by not letting me buy some chicken. I think this is discrimination.

Anonymous said...

Wow i just got hired at the store in Clarksvile, and let me tell everyone...... I love my job! The people you meet everyday is a breath of fresh air. Also the people I work with are great. I have never worked at a place where everyone works as a team and does not complain. Also the food is so fresh I get upset sometime thinking about how much food they throw out just because it looks ugly or it has been out for more than 15-20 minutes,lol....that drives me crazy. But they must be doing something right because they have the best chicken in Clarksville!!!!! So to all those people who had negative comments in miss....... come see us in Tennessee!!!!!!!!......Clarksville, if you didn't hear.

Anonymous said...

Come see us in Paragould, AR. We have an awesome team and an awesome store. I love working there. We try to keep the atomosphere fun and friendly for all of our customers and the food is always fresh.

Mommy said...

I have visited the Dodges in Dunedin Florida and got the worst customer service of my life three times.... Three strikes ,,,,,YOUR OUT!!!

Anonymous said...

The lovely Amanda working in the Fort Walton store is the best I have seen anywhere! She is courteous, does a great job and is an asset to the company. I like to go where the help is as good as the food.

Anonymous said...

I live right down the road from the North Myrtle Beach one (the one in the article), and I just love going to this place. It's best on thirds, just come in and hang out and eat JoJos and shoot the shit. Plus the music is actual music, not musack BS. Very well managed store.

Steve Garufi said...

This is the GREATEST tribute to Dodge's Fried Chicken & Gasoline ever! Great article and photos. :)

Anonymous said...

I love the Dodge's Chicken in North Myrtle beach, SC. I stop there everytime I'm in town. The spicey wings are the best I've ever had. The staff greets you as soon as you walk in the door. They have one girl, I swear she's been there forever, Sarah, no matter if it was a week or a couple of months she always remembers us, and greets us with a huge smile, and freindly welcome. When I'm in N.M.B. I won't go anywhere else for gas, or CHICKEN!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

it is delicious! everytime i go to myrtle beach for vacation, i dont go out onto the beach without stoppin in Dodge's Chicken. their jo-jo's are extraordinary!!

Anonymous said...

I work at dodges in Huntsville AL and I love it.. Not only is our food great but the ladies that work there are all wonderful along with the manager Billy he is the nicest manager u could ever ask for.. We have great deals on chicken and other great foods.. My favorite is our chicken sandwich, I add cheese and some mayo it's perfect, our oil that we use is always fresh and makes a difference on how everything taste. I know I sound like a ad but I'm very proud of our store here we are also very clean.. I hope if anyone is in or going through Huntsville AL they look us up and stop by I would be happy to serve them ...

Anonymous said...

For robinhood7200: The corporate phone number is 662-842-7525; address is 447 East Main Street, Tupelo, MS 38801. You can reach the owners, Henry and Bobby Dodge at hdodge@dbims.com and bdodge@dbims.com respectively. Good luck with resolution to your complaint. I hope this information helps you....

Anonymous said...

we love the dodges in Clarksville Tennessee the workers seem always to be having fun and they are extremely busy we like the great display boards ..the lady who drew them actually added my daughters name on the one for october after she said she loves them .we love the chicken special wow 8pcs of chicken for 5.99 great price ! keep up the great work !

Anonymous said...

I go to dodges alot in Huntsville I Love to go in the evening there is a cashier stephany that is super nice and fast she is always polite and so sweet. She also will talk to you like a friend not just a customer.. I love my experience at dodges..

Anonymous said...

my mom just brought some home..Ive never eaten dodges or heard of it..but i took a bite and it was effing amazinggg!!!..people please stop this place its delicious

Anonymous said...

Go to the dodge store in Okolona ms. Ask for gloriana

Anonymous said...

I went to the dodges store in mobile alabama on yesterday evening and watched a young lady eating. As i approached the counter i asked for 8 pizza sticks, she licked the ranch and pizza sauce off of her fingers and proceeded to ring me up. Ewwww! Her hands never made it to the sink and my cash never made it into her register, i left. My schedule changes frequently so i go into the store 5 days a week to get my dodges fix, i simply have to have it. I prefer the morning and night people. As a customer i really dont want to see the female cashier hugging and caressing her girlfriend between customers. I dont have anything against gay people but i see that as disrespect for the customer and her job. The male patron that was there was just as unfriendly as the female, i spoke but was never spoken back to, besides when he said, "what can i get u hun" hun? What happened to ma'am? Im really starting to get a bad taste in my mouth for the rude employees, hopefully my schedule will be permanently changed so i wont EVER have to see those 2 employees again.

vader37 said...

Best wings I've found in the area!

Anonymous said...

Dodges in Troutville va is amazing, but employees are rude as heck and have been for 15 years! However, Im in love with their corn dogs!! They aren't honey battered & you can't find that anywhere else!! Yum yum!

Anonymous said...

Dunedin Florida location always has the scummiest employees and they let the food sit way to long!!!! I'm pregnant and really wanted fried chicken and jojo potatoes plus I was craving an egg roll! I got there to the counter and all the chicken had that dark rubbery like glass effect to it, it was completely dried out as were the egg rolls boneless wings and potatoes, I bought 2 for a dollar something and they were clearly sitting since the first batch -- yuk. I hope this place turns around it was wonderful 2 years ago! (When they had Turkey legs!! :) )

Anonymous said...

Go to the Dodges in Huntsville Alabama if you want to get treated like shit by Kathy the manager!!!!!

Anonymous said...

You stopped in Tupelo? That is the corporate headquarters. They need to give us an app for location while on the road. I travel a lot and every time I find one I mark the location in my phone as a favorite with gas buddy. I have been in the one in Paragould. Good store. My fav is the hot wings. Spicy and crunchy and super moist. I discovered the chain about 15 years ago in hot springs at.

Anonymous said...

I have. Several times. Always good.

Anonymous said...

That is hard to believe since the store location is in an area that is 70% black and 90% of their clientele are black. I have been to that store several times over the years when I go thru Hot Springs and they are always friendly and they are covered up with customers. Food is great and service is above average for a convenience store.

Coty Fisbhburne said...

Is this the same Bobby Dodge who went to Vandy, then later was at summer at ROTC summer camp at Ft. Benning w/me '60?
And Elvis once drove a truck for his dad?
cfisburne@rhtc.net

Anonymous said...

I need the email address to contact these people. Major complaint!!!!! Anyone know what the email address is??????

Anonymous said...

I was attempting to purchase some fuel when a man came over the speaker asking me to please come inside and prepay. while inside I witnessed a man wearing the stores uniform hugging on his boyfriend for everyone to see. When my card was still failing inside i began to get irritated. I walked over to the counter with the "Manager" and asked for his help in getting my gas turned on. He talked to his "friend" for another 3 minutes then walked over to the register and rang me up for gas. I find this extremely unprofessional and although i ultimately got my gas i will probably not return.

Anonymous said...

That was the huntsville location above. I did not even know that it was a chain untill today. i will most likely call corporate and have the situation dealt with.

Michelle Kennedy said...

We went to the store right outside the back gate when we were stationed at Ft. Knox and fell in love with the food! The fried corn is amazing and the chicken always fresh! Is there a closer location to Savannah than Myrtle because I sure could use some Dodge's in my life ;)

Anonymous said...

Dodge's Chicken is a joke. While some of the workers at the Hopkinsville store are nice, the gas pumps are not calibrated correctly(they will run fast than slow down to barely anything coming out) and repeat the process until the amount of gas you paid for is "supposed" to be in your tank. They also like to overcharge you and than tell you that you don't know how your bank operates and that they didn't run your transaction twice when clearly you can see it twice on your account statement! Get it together people!

Anonymous said...

Stopped off at Dodges on the way back to the Naval Base many nights. Funniest moment was arriving at the Naval base gate and the guard asked if we had been drinking. My buddy had driven off with the gas pump still in the gas tank!!!! LOL Needless to say I drove the rest of the way. Great Chicken though!

Mickey Champagne said...

Good food and cheap diesel in Gulfport

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know the email address to the payroll department

Alex Grisanti said...

Dodge's on south 3rd has a rude cashier (Monique) she's very belligerent inconsiderate and rude overall Dodgers is a good store

Anonymous said...

Monique was very rude to me as well the dark skin short heavy set woman that works on south 3rd ddnt want to bag my items an was very rude about it I love Dodge's but my last visit wasn't so pleasant

Unknown said...

Their employees especially the manager Carol are very rude and smart with the customers they need new employment I love the food but refuse to go because of the service with am attitude

Stephanie Lendermon said...

Their employees especially the manager Carol are very rude and smart with the customers they need new employment I love the food but refuse to go because of the service with am attitude

Jessica Guy-Holbrooks said...

Orangeburg, SC