ALBANY -- Marty Boatwright, 36, had never before owned a restaurant or even worked in one. Yet the ex-shoe salesman and Troy University business student says he is doing "pretty well" with his new place, Xtreme Wild Wings at 1905 S. Madison St.
He even makes it sound easy.
According to Boatwright, he was picking up dinner at a Japanese restaurant at the June Bug Plaza when the idea was born.
"They were moving to a new location," Boatwright said, "and they didn't want to move all their cooking equipment. We knew each other, and they suggested I could rent it from them and start my own place. I thought it was a pretty good deal."
Everything was in place and he "didn't have to do much," so it looked like a real opportunity, Boatwright said. He hasn't let his lack of restaurant experience or current economic conditions hold him back.
"You have to take chances if you want to succeed. You don't have to practice. You just do it," Boatwright said, although he added that he was "shocked" that in this economy so many people had the money to spend on his chicken.
"They tell me how good the food is. I hope they (the customers) stay here," he said.
Boatwright admits that the recipes and cooking methods for his food are not original.
However, that doesn't seem to keep the customers away.
"The food companies tell you a lot about it," he said. "They tell you about the equipment, the recipes and how to cook the food."
Wayne McCray, who has no more restaurant experience than Boatwright, is the manager of Xtreme Wild Wings.
"Cooking is a no-brainer," he said. "I grew up in a big family, and we all knew how to cook."
McCray said Xtreme Wild Wings serves everything from salads and hamburgers to wings and chicken of almost every "hotness" and flavor.
He said customers tell him they appreciate a quality restaurant on the south side of Albany. Xtreme Wings has been open since February.