The Roost: Deep fried and delicious

Do you ever have the thought, “my friends and I always end up eating at the same place?” I can imagine this being the case for most upperclassmen especially since I, after spending three years as an undergraduate at MSU, have come to the conclusion that my palette is becoming accustomed mostly to Johnny Carino’s and Pita Pit for date night and weekend dining. I’ll be the first one to admit I have very picky taste when it comes to food; I’m not exactly a connoisseur. I want to expand my eating horizons and find out what the best places to eat in Bozeman are, and if I can do it on a college student’s budget, that’ll provide even more incentive for my food adventures.

I began my travels at a relatively newer restaurant called “The Roost.” This southern-style, fried chicken restaurant came to Bozeman in early May of last year and serves a fairly wide-range of fried chicken-centered menu items, fairly priced. Their menu has three different basket/bucket options that come with your choice of sides (there’s about five or six options listed), a few sandwiches, rotisserie chicken, homemade pies, and you can’t forget the sweet tea. Before ordering, I already knew I loved buckets of fried chicken so I chose the ½ bucket option in a large size (comes with two sides, instead of just one) and the “Come Back” sauce, for an extra $.50. My date got the same and with our drinks our total came out to $22.50. The Bucket comes with a biscuit, and my sides were mac n’ cheese and mashed potatoes. After ordering, my date and I filled up our cups and took a seat at the only available table (we foolishly went at noon so the whole place was full of other diners).

The atmosphere inside was lively, but not too loud, and the large windows on every wall provided for a lot of light. There are about seven or eight different sized tables which are plain wood with wood chairs and the tea dispenser is in the shape of a beehive, probably as to play into the southern motif. We waited about 10 to 15 minutes for our food to arrive, giving us some time to chat and observe our location: the parking lot is big enough for about four to six cars—they’re located right off Main Street, hidden by some surrounding trees and bushes—the setup is reminiscent of an old, small farmhouse; and their sign outside is red with a rooster, which is very fitting and sets off the all-white siding of the restaurant.

Conveniently, the food is brought out to your table. After the first few bites of salty, fried goodness I knew this meal would be hard to beat. The biscuit was buttery and the mashed potatoes were served with the skins and garlic seasoning. By the time I was about three quarters of the way through my whole meal, I realized I probably had too much food already and I ended up not even tasting my mac n’ cheese.

Overall “The Roost” satiated everything I wanted out of my dining experience: reasonable price, good food and a subdued and relatively quiet atmosphere. I highly recommend this restaurant for anyone that loves fried chicken or who just wants to experience a new place for dining in Bozeman. I’ll definitely be revisiting, hopefully soon.