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 I'm done with Cracker Barrel

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leethebard

  • Total Posts: 6068
  • Joined: 8/16/2007
  • Location: brick, NJ
Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Tue, 07/19/11 8:11 PM (permalink)
Yes,I think that's what some of us are saying. Cracker Barrels and such are located usually right off a throughway exit. My family sees the Cracker Barrel logo at a coming exit. and we decide to stop. If we're not familiar with the area in which we're travelling, at least we're familiar with Cracker Barrell, and know the menu. To drive up and down a random exit looking for some roadfood place that might be ok for a quick meal while travelling and on a schedule, just isn't practical!!If we've heard of a roadfood place and it's where we're travelling, that's a different story.
 
#31
    leethebard

    • Total Posts: 6068
    • Joined: 8/16/2007
    • Location: brick, NJ
    Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Tue, 07/19/11 8:15 PM (permalink)
    Besides we like the food and usually know ahead of arrival what we'll order. So it's NOT just convenience. No amount of convenience would make us turn off an exit for a McDonalds, Arby's, Pizza Hut and such....we just keep driving 'til a friendlier logo shows itself. If we're off the beaten path, and a cool mom & pop place presents itself, that works, too!
     
    #32
      tkitna

      • Total Posts: 620
      • Joined: 6/10/2004
      • Location: wellsburg, WV
      Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 2:31 AM (permalink)
      mjambro


      tkitna


      If they didnt have the best pancakes in the world, i'd be done with them too.


      You really need to get out a bit more.  For a start, it's evident you've never had fresh blueberries with your pancakes nor real maple syrup.....  for a start.

      Oh, I get it, you're done with them too.

       
      Please, i've eaten tons of pancakes (including my own) in tons of states, cities, and food places and I happen to think Cracker Barrel makes a darn good pancake. I realize snubbing chains is the thing to do around here, but they get some things right sometimes and this is one of them.

       
      #33
        ann peeples

        • Total Posts: 8317
        • Joined: 5/21/2006
        • Location: West Allis, Wisconsin
        Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 3:59 AM (permalink)
        Again, its all good, my friends!! I will avoid Cracker Barrel- I would rather eat at McDonalds. Cracker Barrel has never made my eggs correctly( over easy-they were over hard) the biscuits and gravy were gloppy and flavorless, and the hash browns were not browned. Enjoy all you want; I will NOT go back.
         
        #34
          MellowRoast

          • Total Posts: 1928
          • Joined: 8/21/2007
          • Location: 'Nooga
          Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 8:09 AM (permalink)
          Cracker Barrel has some good things on the menu, and of course, any restaurant can have bad days.  The breakfast menu has generally been excellent for me, but I agree with Ann on the gravy.  It's gloppy, gelatin-like, and to me, the smoky flavor is a turn-off.   Part of the problem is the gravy is made from a mix.  Also, most of their cooks can't properly cook grits.  Generally, the grits are undercooked and runny.  (Imagine a Tennessee-based restaurant that can't cook grits!)  Their pancakes, surprisingly served with real maple syrup and real butter, are excellent, and I usually order them with pecans and blueberries.   
          <message edited by MellowRoast on Wed, 07/20/11 9:01 AM>
           
          #35
            wanderingjew

            • Total Posts: 7381
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            Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 8:48 AM (permalink)
            tkitna


            mjambro


            tkitna


            If they didnt have the best pancakes in the world, i'd be done with them too.


            You really need to get out a bit more.  For a start, it's evident you've never had fresh blueberries with your pancakes nor real maple syrup.....  for a start.

            Oh, I get it, you're done with them too.


            Please, i've eaten tons of pancakes (including my own) in tons of states, cities, and food places and I happen to think Cracker Barrel makes a darn good pancake. I realize snubbing chains is the thing to do around here, but they get some things right sometimes and this is one of them.

            I've eaten tons of pancakes too and it appears you must have skipped
            Vermont- the pancake capital of the nation.  With places like Blue Benn Diner, Dots, Eaton's Sugar House, Sugar and Spice among many others, I can assure you they would blow the pancakes at Cracker Barrel right out of the water.
             
            #36
              The Travelin Man

              • Total Posts: 3698
              • Joined: 3/25/2003
              • Location: Central FL
              Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 8:52 AM (permalink)
              I'm just curious, but how would you know that if you've never eaten at the Cracker Barrel?
               

               
              #37
                Greymo

                • Total Posts: 3660
                • Joined: 11/30/2005
                • Location: Marriottsville, MD
                Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 9:00 AM (permalink)
                He took my word on it
                 
                #38
                  ces1948

                  • Total Posts: 1499
                  • Joined: 8/6/2003
                  • Location: Port St Lucie, Fl
                  Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 9:00 AM (permalink)
                  There's only so much you can do to make pancakes. I'm speaking traditional pancakes here not some exotic blend. Probably 3-4 ingredients.
                   
                  #39
                    HollyDolly

                    • Total Posts: 1065
                    • Joined: 1/18/2006
                    • Location: Schertz, TX
                    Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 9:18 AM (permalink)
                    It's like anywhere.You can go to some chain place while traveling, and it may be good where you live, and lousy in Louisville. Even in cities themselves, you could eat at say Chili's in Selma,out IH35N,and be wonderful, and the one over on say IH10 out by Six Flags Fiesta Texas is lousy. These are examples, but you get my drift.I think some of that depends on who is running the kitchen.
                    And you can get lousy roadfood at mom and pop places too.
                    When we traveled it was McDonald's or some such place when driving the interstate.When we would get to Buffalo, we would go to Ted's Hot Dogs, or other local places my parents had eaten at,they met in Buffalo ,Ny when daddy was stationed there for the Airforce. Or when we would go to Milwaukee, we would ask relatives for  new places sometimes.Hot Springs,it was always at my great aunts most of the time,cause daddy's aunts would always feed us and even if we ate lunch,offer us coffee and dessert.  When we would take them out to eat, we would ask then where to go.
                    Listen, there are local places here i haven't tried, like Bohannon's Brieztke's Station out in New Berlin,and I 've lived here in South Texas for 40 years.Driven through the town lots of times over the years,just never stopped there, and I'm a local yokel.So folks don't feel bad if you don't do a detour to go out of your way to eat at some roadfood place. Alot of them don't have websites,so you have no way of knowing if they are even in business anymore.
                    I haven't eaten at Abel's Diner in Schertz in ages.It's a roadfood place, on your way down IH35 South.You have to get off at the FM3009-Schertz exit,and stay on the access road.been there for years. but the place gets packed, and not a lot of parking so that maybe why.
                     
                    #40
                      NascarDad

                      Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 9:19 AM (permalink)
                      I try to avoid chains as much as possible.  It can be tough when traveling but I try to plan ahead to find non chain places, and use this site and others to help with that. 
                       
                      Chains do have a lot of advantages especially if you are in a hurry.  They usually are close to exits on the interstate, and usually ample easy parking.  they aren't usually in questionable neighborhoods, and generally easy to get in and out of.  They often have signs on the interstate exits pointing the way.
                       
                      The food is consistent so you know what to expect.  They almost always have online menus, so you can help plan ahead for any with special dietary needs, picky eaters, or if you are looking for one dish in particular.
                       
                      And some of the high end chains even have very good food (Flemings , for example, and most of the time Ruth's Chris.  Even Maggianos)
                       
                       
                      The reason Roadfood has become so precious is that it survives DESPITE all these built in advantages of the chains. 
                       
                      In the end its a matter of taste and a balancing of priorities.  One time when my family wanted to meet at an Applebees I offered to pay the meal if they could have it somewhere local - and it worked :)  If I wasn't as blessed as I am, I would have been stuck at Applebees.  Sometimes its all about the trip and there is no time to research - going to a funeral somewhere you have rarely if ever gone, for example.  I even found myself going to a Cheesecake Factory once because, well, that is where someone wanted to go for their birthday. 
                       
                      Still my heart lies with the local joints, especially the ones with classic roadfood, and I spend some of my time and effort for any trip to try and gets as much of it as I can, to visit old favorites and try a few new places; and then share that info here.
                       
                      As far as Cracker Barrel, for various reasons I don't go to the one in Winchester anymore and have found some nice diners nearby.  Now, they aren't as convenient, but the food is better and they both have their own local charm. When I can, that is what I try to find, which is what brought me to Roadfood.com in the firstplace
                       
                       
                       
                       
                       
                      #41
                        ces1948

                        • Total Posts: 1499
                        • Joined: 8/6/2003
                        • Location: Port St Lucie, Fl
                        Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 9:32 AM (permalink)
                        Quite often it will be a location or even an area that falls down on the job. We found that when we lived in Tennessee most Cracker Barrel meals were good. Recently back here in Florida we've had  somewhat lousy meals at the Ft. Pierce and Stuart locations. That's what's weird about it. Chains are supposed to give you the same food regardless of which location you stop. That's really one of the basic foundations of a chain.
                         
                        #42
                          wanderingjew

                          • Total Posts: 7381
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                          Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 9:39 AM (permalink)
                          The Travelin Man


                          I'm just curious, but how would you know that if you've never eaten at the Cracker Barrel?




                          What Greymo said!
                           
                          Dammit! Now I want me some Pancakes!
                           
                          I'll have to settle for a plateful of Jonnycakes at Jiggers, this coming Saturday
                           
                          #43
                            mjambro

                            • Total Posts: 419
                            • Joined: 2/7/2006
                            • Location: Providence, RI
                            Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 12:15 PM (permalink)
                            ces1948


                            There's only so much you can do to make pancakes. I'm speaking traditional pancakes here not some exotic blend. Probably 3-4 ingredients.

                             
                            For a start, not over mixing the batter is critical for a light, fluffy pancake.  The average short order cook in a chain typically has no concept of that critical step (over cooking is another typical problem).  Next, of course is the quality of the added fruit.   Fresh is obviously best, but is obviously not always available.  Chains almost never use fresh because consistency over rides quality.  I've had frozen fruit that's quite excellent and many that have been quit poor.  There is NO reason to ever use compote.  Lastly, real maple syrup is a treat, but I can understand why some will bypass real due to cost (We typically carry along our own, if we plan ahead). 
                             
                            #44
                              mjambro

                              • Total Posts: 419
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                              • Location: Providence, RI
                              Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 12:20 PM (permalink)
                              wanderingjew


                              The Travelin Man


                              I'm just curious, but how would you know that if you've never eaten at the Cracker Barrel?




                              What Greymo said!

                              Dammit! Now I want me some Pancakes!

                              I'll have to settle for a plateful of Jonnycakes at Jiggers, this coming Saturday

                               
                              Actually, we've found Jiggers to have about the best blueberry pancakes south of Maine.   Our gold standard is at the Huckleberry in Ogunquit, ME (Maine diner is quite good, but over rated IMO).
                               
                              Why not do the Cracker Barrel challenge?   Try some at the CB Coventry location and then at Jiggers (or visa versa, but you may not finish those at Coventry)?
                               
                              #45
                                wanderingjew

                                • Total Posts: 7381
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                                Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 1:23 PM (permalink)
                                mjambro


                                wanderingjew


                                The Travelin Man


                                I'm just curious, but how would you know that if you've never eaten at the Cracker Barrel?




                                What Greymo said!

                                Dammit! Now I want me some Pancakes!

                                I'll have to settle for a plateful of Jonnycakes at Jiggers, this coming Saturday


                                Actually, we've found Jiggers to have about the best blueberry pancakes south of Maine.   Our gold standard is at the Huckleberry in Ogunquit, ME (Maine diner is quite good, but over rated IMO).

                                Why not do the Cracker Barrel challenge?   Try some at the CB Coventry location and then at Jiggers (or visa versa, but you may not finish those at Coventry)?


                                I would but I'm a health nut when I'm at home and I watch my carb intake.
                                I don't even do maple syrup on the Johnny Cakes (and I only get 3 vs 5)- just butter- and with a side of Canadian Bacon, I'm good to go. Although I do drink the coffee at Jigger's after breakfast I always go next door to Main Street Coffee for a good strong french roast and then walk back to my condo from there.
                                 
                                #46
                                  MiamiDon

                                  Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 1:35 PM (permalink)
                                  The Travelin Man


                                  I'm just curious, but how would you know that if you've never eaten at the Cracker Barrel?





                                   
                                  #47
                                    mjambro

                                    • Total Posts: 419
                                    • Joined: 2/7/2006
                                    • Location: Providence, RI
                                    Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 4:33 PM (permalink)
                                    AndreaB


                                    I'm still going to defend Cracker Barrel as a decent stop while on the road, especially if you don't have time to take the time to go to a roadfood place.
                                    I've never gotten sick there 

                                     
                                    Well, that is one positive point about Cracker Barrel.
                                     
                                    #48
                                      MellowRoast

                                      • Total Posts: 1928
                                      • Joined: 8/21/2007
                                      • Location: 'Nooga
                                      Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 4:57 PM (permalink)
                                      AndreaB

                                      I've never gotten sick there....

                                      I got food poisoning from a salad at the Cracker Barrel in Calhoun, Georgia about 5 years ago.
                                       
                                      #49
                                        leethebard

                                        • Total Posts: 6068
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                                        • Location: brick, NJ
                                        Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 5:46 PM (permalink)
                                        And I've gotten very ill from some poor roadfood mom and pop's!
                                         
                                        #50
                                          MiamiDon

                                          Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 6:06 PM (permalink)
                                          leethebard


                                          And I've gotten very ill from some poor roadfood mom and pop's!

                                          Please tell us which Roadfood restaurant's food made you ill, so we can avoid it!
                                           
                                          #51
                                            leethebard

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                                            • Location: brick, NJ
                                            Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 6:36 PM (permalink)
                                            It was a diner years ago in south Jersey. Don.t remember the name...but not far from Storybook Land where we had taken our kids. My wife has also been taken ill from a bad salad at a small restaurant near Maryland last year....and we've eaten in Cracker barrels...probably 8-9 different ones multiple times(for some) and ...so far so good! My point is bad food can happen anywhere. It's the preparer's fault. Whether its a sacred roadfood or a lowly chain. Eat where you like.You hate Cracker Barrel, don't go.I hate Pizza Hut, I don't go. But please, an opinion around here is still just that...opinion. I love roadfood, and in 65 years have had my share, and then some.And I love learning about new finds as a member here.  But we also frequent select chains my wife and kids like,,,different experiences. Both can be fun and also provide a good meal.....and vice versa. Just my thoughts. Sorry to ramble on!!!!
                                             
                                            #52
                                              ces1948

                                              • Total Posts: 1499
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                                              • Location: Port St Lucie, Fl
                                              Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 6:52 PM (permalink)
                                              The only time I've gotten food poisoning was on a cruise ship many years ago. Not sure if that would be considered roadfood or seafood.
                                               
                                              #53
                                                AndreaB

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                                                • Location: Versailles, KY
                                                Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 10:30 PM (permalink)
                                                felix4067


                                                The Travelin Man


                                                AndreaB


                                                I'm still going to defend Cracker Barrel as a decent stop while on the road, especially if you don't have time to take the time to go to a roadfood place.

                                                While this thread has invariably turned into the "I hate chains" versus the "I like chains" argument that crops up every so often (of which, I would like to point out, I am trying to stay out of the fray, this time), this may be the most confusing statement I've read.

                                                I bolded the part that I needed, but I am curious as to why it would take more time to go to a "Roadfood place" than a Cracker Barrel?  Is the assumption that service is slower at the "Roadfood place" than elsewhere?  I don't get it.

                                                I know you weren't asking me, but I can tell you why that makes sense to me. Chains like Cracker Barrel are almost always located in a shopping district or other area with a ton of places you're probably already going, and most often right off the freeway. Roadfood places often require a drive of many miles from where everything else you're doing is located. I remember trying to go to Hays BBQ on my way through Tennessee...turn south off of I-40, then drive for 30 minutes, then turn again and drive another ten minutes out of town. Only to get there and find that they were closed because they ran out of meat. I believe that night I ate at McDonald's, because I was an hour off my travelling path and completely unfamiliar with the area.

                                                 
                                                BINGO felix4067 - the "right off the freeway" nails it for me.

                                                 
                                                #54
                                                  Poverty Pete

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                                                  Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Wed, 07/20/11 11:38 PM (permalink)
                                                  Every single time I have ever met up with Wandering Jew, he has been willing to match me weight for weight, 16 oz. at a time.
                                                   
                                                  #55
                                                    wanderingjew

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                                                    Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Thu, 07/21/11 8:01 AM (permalink)
                                                    MiamiDon


                                                    leethebard


                                                    And I've gotten very ill from some poor roadfood mom and pop's!

                                                    Please tell us which Roadfood restaurant's food made you ill, so we can avoid it!

                                                    Harold's BBQ- Atlanta
                                                    and
                                                    Irondale Cafe- Irondale AL- 
                                                     
                                                    #56
                                                      wanderingjew

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                                                      Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Thu, 07/21/11 8:04 AM (permalink)
                                                      Poverty Pete


                                                      Every single time I have ever met up with Wandering Jew, he has been willing to match me weight for weight, 16 oz. at a time.

                                                      Hey, I was talking about power walking, not power beer drinking!
                                                       
                                                      #57
                                                        Louis

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                                                        • Joined: 4/28/2003
                                                        • Location: Henderson, KY
                                                        Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Thu, 07/21/11 10:42 AM (permalink)
                                                        There is a Cracker Barrel literally 90 seconds away from my front door.  I don't patronize it all that often.  When I do, it's because it's convenient.  Like any other chain, you have to wade through the menu a few times and experiment to find something you like.
                                                         
                                                        I've found that I like their red-eye gravy.  By itself it's no good, but when you've crumbled up a whole piece of cornbread (or a piece at a time) and crumbled it into to gravy and let it soak for a few minutes, it's a nice little treat.  Unusual anyway.
                                                         
                                                        The waiters and waitresses who wait on me have never heard of red-eye gravy (and this is in the South!), even when it's on their own menu.  What's the world coming to?
                                                         
                                                         
                                                        #58
                                                          felix4067

                                                          • Total Posts: 3289
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                                                          Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Thu, 07/21/11 10:49 AM (permalink)
                                                          I guess my problem is with people who insist other people are stupid, or ignorant, or any number of other things because they like Cracker Barrel. Or any other chain. God forbid we each have different taste!
                                                           
                                                          #59
                                                            wanderingjew

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                                                            Re:I'm done with Cracker Barrel Thu, 07/21/11 11:06 AM (permalink)
                                                            felix4067


                                                            I guess my problem is with people who insist other people are stupid, or ignorant, or any number of other things because they like Cracker Barrel. Or any other chain. God forbid we each have different taste!

                                                            Really??????

                                                            Please show me where anyone mentioned that other people are stupid or ignorant?
                                                             
                                                            I don't see it anywhere...
                                                             
                                                             
                                                             
                                                            #60
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