Tag Archives: spicy’s

The Poster Collection: Day Eight

I worked at a little hole in the wall/roach farm/ISS nightmare/underage-beer-provider/ chicken wing and beer joint located on the Strip in the early 90’s named Spicy’s. I worked both in the front and the back of the house at various times and witnessed some kitchen nightmares that would make Gordon Ramsey pee the bed.

As a caveat let me say this: the chicken wings , steak and cheese sammiches, and oriental bbq steak sammiches were ab=so=fucking=lutely deeeeelicious. Most of the recipes came from the original(?) owner, who was Asian. Not sure what part of Asia, but I really only met him once or twice as he rode off to California in his red Corvette( for realsies). The chicken wing sauce was very simple . yet unmatched in all my wing eating travels. The steak and cheeses were simple but fresh cut beef only because it was cheaper to pay someone almost nothing to cut it up than to buy it pre-made. The sauce for the oriental BBQ sammich was a sticky sweet concoction full of ginger and absurd amounts of garlic.  However…..


  • We used to buy whole chicken wings and cut them by hand into the little drummies and 2nd joints. We did this by removing the safety guard from the meat slicer and cutting the severing the wings joints upon the spinning blade of doom. It was hugely effective but terrifying.
  • I saw the owner “allegedly” thaw a case of frozen chicken wings by running them thru the Hobart with the sopa hoses disconnected.
  • Once, to save a buck or two, the owner tried using solid shortening in the fryers. While cleaning it, the shortening overflowed and covered the floor in a congealed mass of discount , off brand crisco.
  • Roaches. Napkin Holders. Use your imagination. Then double that.
  • Gaggles of 17 year olds drunk on 24 ounce can’s of Foster’s, some of Murvill’s best and brightest at the time
  • We once sold 1600 pounds of chicken wings in a single day. This is part of why I really don’t like UT football games. Every Saturday home game is an exercise in torture if you work on the Strip
  • Tables of Vol’s linemen on all-you-can-eat wing nights could consume upwards of 50 poounds of wings per table. The most I saw ever was a skinny dude who ate almost 130 wings.
  • The owner of the building would sell parking spaces on gamedays, pack the cars in like sardines, and then leave. Noone could get out until the “key” cars were moved. Once mine was a “key” car and it was moved by a gang of about 8 guys into the middle of the street.
  • Whiskey. Knives. Hot grease. What could go wrong?

Anywho, here are some posters of sheer awesomeness



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We’ve got Shirts and Annoyed Ramblings!

First off let me say, howdy and happy holidays…or merry christmas or happy kwanza or happy hanaukkah or whatever you choose to say…to be honest i wouldnt celebrate anything in december if it wasn’t for the kiddies, but i’m a crusty bastard soooo…anywho

WE”VE GOT T-SHIRTS!!! now we are officially cool and you can be too! stop by the shop or email me and i can ship one of these beauties world wide!….Now on to the ranting and rambling

here is a short list of things that have been pissing me off lately, insert your own punctuation as needed or desired.

republican debates, goat cheese, the high cost of towels, vaccuum cleaner power cords, power chords, broken strings and rusty things, shipping peanuts that you cannot eat, stale doughnuts, co-pays, computer editing software, unclipped toenails, the inability to throw something in a straight line for ten feet, new charlie brown specials, churches in general, generals in churches, zombies, hipster staches, miller high life and the whole damn state of texas

here are some good things…champion cheetahs, fire, mario kart, baby giggles, screen printing, fire, cheese from 2008, UEFA, basketball, fire, sourdough, long hair, fire, onions and did i mention FIRE?!?!



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Photo Bomb!

i hate to admit it, but i love my smartphone…having a nice camera and mp3 player and google searcher and gps and video game system and all around useful thing….sooo anywho, here are some pics from the aforementioned smartphone…dig em with  a shovel y’all!

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Photographs…not the Def Leppard song, though, sorry

Ok, I know the song is actually Photograph, singular not plural with the s. Deal with it. That’s how I roll.

Anyway, I got a new phone that does coooool things like take pictures and keep me organized and let’s me play scrabble while driving down I-40 at 85 miles per hour. So look with your eyeholes and leave comments with your fleshy letter poking hand sticks

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Spicy’s Original Wing Sauce circa 1989

My first real introduction to cooking for a living was at Spicy’s on the Cumberland Avenue strip(see Jaqui’s Tacos for more info) , and what we were really known for was chicken wings. We had one sauce, didn’t use any butter or oil and it was perfect. If you asked for extra hot you just got more sauce, if you asked for mild, you got less. We did all you can eat wings for 7.99 ( i think) sometimes twice a week.  The endless plates of crisp fried goodies drew in quite a collection of folks, most impressive being the groups of offensive linemen for the UT Vols. Needless to say, but i will anyway, six gentlemen averaging 300+ pounds can put a serious hurting on some chicken wings. This was before we switched to “draft” sodas and served Coke, Sprite and Grape and Orange Nehi’s in glass bottles, along with only bottled beer. and a can or two of Foster’s. So along with the mounds of chicken bones would be 30-40 glass bottles and reams of napkins. The most ever eaten at Spicy’s was by a tall lanky fellow who wolfed down 128 chicken wings in a relative blink of an eye.  I have a lot more thoughts about this place, what i learned there, both good and bad, and just the building itself. It was a Swenson’s Ice Cream parlor, and before that it was Ollie’s Trolly, which i remember my dad taking to me to when he drug me to class with him at UT. They had the best french fries  ever. Bar none. I have replicated that recipe which i will share.Then we would go next door to the Electric Wizard and play pinball and Joust and Qbert and Pengo and Gauntlet and the football game with two trackballs that would pinch your palm if you hit it too hard and just right. Anywho, here are a couple of secret recipes, revealed for the first time! BWAHAHAHAAAHAH   BWAHAHAAHAHAAA!!! (evil laugh<<<<)


1 gallon Louisiana brand hot sauce. no substitutions!!!!!

Mix together 2 TBSP of each of these:

granulated garlic

black pepper

white pepper

onion powder

Cayenne pepper

and the secret ingredient (drum roll please)…….Tiger Seasoning. yep, MSG. and i hate MSG…makes my innards churn and stuff, but without it, the sauce does not taste the same, although it is still yummy..

Mix spices to jar of hotsauce, shake it like a Polaroid picture, then let it sit for a day or so….Keeps until it is gone, which won;t be long…share with friends…

BUT STEVE< I DON’T HAVE A GALLON OF HOT SAUCE, ONLY A WIMPY FROO_FROO BOTTLE…..well, tough shit…do the math or buy more hot sauce

And i know it is a simple , simple recipe…no chipotle, no asian influences, nothing funky at all but doctored up hot sauce. but try it on some crispy, fried wings and you will be convinced…AND DO NOT BREAD YOUR WINGS!!! if you do you are an idiot. I’m sorry to say that, but i heard it from your mom.


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Carnitas de Jaqui

these carnitas are from a recipe from a sweet lady named Jaqui, whom i worked with at one of my first restaurant jobs, Spicy’s on the Strip in Knoville, TN. It was a little shack that shared a building with an awesome barcade, The Electric Wizard. We sold wings and steak and cheese sandwiches, plus the usual assortment of campus friendly grub. Everything was scratch made, due more to cheapness of the owner, who employed a family of Mexican Immigrants. They were interesting to work with , and my knowledge of Spanish curse words can be linked directly to them, as well as a recipe or two. Being on the Strip at UT means gamed days were an onslaught of people, 100,000+ flooding the streets and packing every eatery. On one homecoming Saturday, we sold over 2000 pounds of chicken wings in under 12 hours in a place that sat around 50 people, maximum. We sold them on the sidewalk out front and in the parking lot out back. It was frenetic, to say the least, but it taught me how to work in the weeds and to never work near a major sports stadium on game day.

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