Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour

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Culinary Wanderlust
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2007/05/02 10:06:38 (permalink)

Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour



On the first stop of our tour, we roll into Triple XXX Family Restaurant located in West Lafayette, Indiana, home of Purdue University, at approximately 12:30 AM. After driving a few hours through a torrential downpour, the bright neon lights of this 24-hour diner soothed our frayed hungry nerves. As we paged through the menu to order their primo dishes, blurry-eyed emo collegians entered and sat down at the cascading counter. In following their lead, we ordered the namesake of the restaurant Triple XXX rootbeer and each tried a speciality burger named after some of the most prolific Boilermakers ever to cup a pigskin on the gridiron. Carly enjoyed the Bernie Burger. An in-house ground beef, as with all of their burgers, covered with the usual suspects including American Cheese, tomatoes, onions, lettuce, and a heaping serving of mayo. I indulged in the Purvis Burger, including all of the prior toppings minus the mayo, but also with smooth creamy peanut butter. It was a delightful party in my mouth. The salty/sweet contrast between the peanut butter and cheese complimented the hamburger meat well. Along with the tasty caffiene induced rootbeer and remarkably salty, yet engaging french fries, this meal hit the spot. It gave us enough energy to stop at Indianapolis for the night.



More to come...
#1

27 Replies Related Threads

    iqdiva
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/02 10:27:16 (permalink)
    Wonderful photos...I loved your desription of your meal.You both look like lovely folks...Enjoy your culinary adventure !
    #2
    buffetbuster
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/02 10:27:40 (permalink)
    CW-
    That is a great start to your trip report! This looks like it will be really good. I'm very much looking forward to the next entry.

    Wasn't Carly the winner of a book for traveling the farthest for the Roadfood bus tour?
    #3
    iqdiva
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/02 10:30:16 (permalink)
    Sorry about the spelling...description
    #4
    Michael Stern
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/02 10:58:11 (permalink)
    It's about time you've posted!

    That is a fine looking hamburger. Let's see more, please.
    #5
    mr chips
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/02 16:50:42 (permalink)
    I really enjoyed meeting and eating with you guys in Nashville.
    #6
    Culinary Wanderlust
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/02 22:47:02 (permalink)
    Thanks for the kind words. I'll do my best to post as much as possible as soon as possible. Carly did win for being the furthest to travel to Nashville. She loves the sandwich book.


    Feeling revitalized after five hours of sleep at a Country Inn and Suites, we continued onward south on I-65. Carly, being as intrepid as any traveller, decided that we should venture off the Interstate and partake in one of Indiana's culinary delights, the Pork Tenderloin Sandwich. According to Jane and Michael, the tiny town of Gnaw Bone has some of the most succulent sandwiches in all of Indiana. With that endorsement, we traversed off the highway and made our way to this tiny town. As we entered the town, our hearts sank. One of the most sobering parts of Roadfood is when a place with great food closes and you don't think far enough in advance to check their state of busines. As we passed an abandoned gas station, we decided to place a call to try to comprehend our quagmire. After getting someone on the phone, we found out that this restaurant still existed, but was up the road further west. Elated, we continued onward.


    Yet, after twenty minutes the only place we found was the Gnaw Bone Sorghum Mill, not the Gnaw Bone Food and Fuel, the former a tiny market with allegedly terrific bread. Terribly confused, Carly and I went to investigate this situation. We were greeted by an elderly woman whose sister runs the place, but had to go home to babysit her grandchildren. She would not be back until 1:00 and since it was 11:00 we would have to wait a few hours. The woman guarding the store could sell us vegetables or lovely lawn ornaments, but she did not have the key to let us sample the infamous sorghum bread. Her bright scarf covering most of her head and thick Southern Indianan accent only made our dissatisifcation more papable.


    During this uniquely absurd interaction, Carly and I came to the conclusion that we should redial the phone number to see where we erred with our previously dynamitely innate roadfood spidey sense. After asking for more detailed directions, we had found the restaurant. Apparently, it moved to the Salt Creek Golf Course further west and changed its name to the 19th Hole.



    After ultimately navigating our way to the restaurant, which is in the main buliding, down the stairs and around the corner, we entered a lounge covered with golf kotchkies and banners celebrating the history of Indiana basketball, including a bumper sticker with the slogan of Bobby Knight for President. The waitress, a woman in her late sixties, brought us the speciality of the house, a pork tenderloin sandwich.



    Breaded on a boring bun, way too small to encapsulate the massive girth of the pork, the sandwich seemed awkward and potentially overrated. Yet, as we squirted on the quintessial condiment of mayo and layered the sandwich with onions, tomatoes, and lettuce, we anticipated our first authentic Indiana pork tenderloin. The first couple of bites indicated nothing too special. Yet, it was one of those meals that gradually reached its potential and by the end we were disappointed that this crisp stunningly white meat with a distinctively divine moistness was no longer on our plates. Next time we intend to order a large one. As we basked in our porcine glory, we noticed the familiarity of the waitress with some of the local golfers, particularly when one older gent smacked her bottom and pleaded her not to tell "Bob" about his fresh hands. You can't buy an experience like watching the links on the 19th Hole.

    #7
    Culinary Wanderlust
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/04 11:17:45 (permalink)
    After having a fried pork sandwich for our first lunch of the day, Carly and I continued down the Interstate corridor to Louisville, Kentucky. The Gateway to the South is home of Churchill Downs, Muhammad Ali, and the world’s largest baseball bat and at least two other notable achievements in food history: The Hot Brown and one of the alleged birthplaces of the cheeseburger. Since neither one of us have ever seen, smelled, or tasted a Hot Brown, we set our sights on the Camberley Brown Hotel, the originator of the tasty concoction pictured here. This bubbly amalgam of ivory goodness is a paragon of ambassadorship to the roadfood world. Actually, this is a small serving; you can order a large for only a few more dollars.



    Located in the hotel as J. Graham’s restaurant, Carly and I decided to share this local delicacy after looking over the free postcards given to guests describing the ingredients and preparation of this insanely rich and creamy skillet. One version of the story is not too far removed from the assumed origins of the Cobb Salad at the Brown Derby. In short, there was some sort of gala consisting of many patrons who imbibed in alcoholic spirits and needed something to cure their quaking stomachs. The chef threw together some turkey, toast points, tomatoes, bacon, along with a wealth of cream and butter into a large messy skillet creating a decadent roux. Some say greasy heavy foods cure hangovers and this would be the dish to attempt that maxim. The meal in front of us consisted of turkey breast that might be fresh or pre-packaged slices considering the layers of gooey disorder enveloped the white meat. Even though, I am not a major supporter of creamy sauces, this pseudo-open faced sandwich has just enough richness to keep my attention for most of the meal instead of reaching for my antacid of choice. Yet, what makes this meal more so memorable is the addition of bacon to the heap of massive caloric intake. Its sodium induced flavor offsets the cloying mesh overriding the plate.



    As a rule of thumb, everything is better with bacon and the Camberley Hot Brown is no exception.

    #8
    kland01s
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/04 13:13:04 (permalink)
    Glad to see new posters and great pics!
    #9
    ellen4641
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/05 00:06:01 (permalink)
    It was real nice meeting you on the Roadfood Bus Tour.

    Hope you have a safe trip back to the Seattle area.

    Great pics!
    ellen in NJ
    #10
    Davydd
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/05 10:22:15 (permalink)
    Culinary, Your pictures are about as sharp as I have seen. I have to ask what camera you are using because I may have to get one.

    This is what you missed in Gnaw Bone. The Food & Fuel closed in December and moved its broaster to the golf club in January. This picture was taken last June.

    #11
    Culinary Wanderlust
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/06 19:38:31 (permalink)
    My camera is a Casio Exilim EX-Z600 with 6.0 megapixels.


    After making a journey to the home of the Hot Brown, Carly and I decided that a pilgrimage to the supposed birthplace of the cheeseburger, Kaelin’s, was next on our list.



    Half an hour after visiting the hotel, we went to Kaelin’s located in the Uptown neighborhood of Louisville. This culinary landmark takes pride in its contribution to the development of the American fast food diet. Feeling slightly uncomfortable already, we threw caution to the curb. We ordered a cheeseburger and a Hot Brown.



    The cheeseburger consisted of the traditional staples including unremarkable ground beef, tomatoes, lettuce, pickles, and the condiment of choice in the South, mayonnaise. The cheese placed on top of the patty is 100% American processed perhaps a Kraft or Alpine Lace single. The remarkable part of the meal is the respect to tradition involved in the kitchen. Instead of having a melted piece of cheese draping the meat, it is placed on the burger after the beef cooks. I’d like to think it is an homage to the origins of how Carl and Mrs. Kaelin causally put a stray tile of cheese for something unique on the burger and not just a lackadaisical cooking staff putting the finishing touches at the end. The best part of the meal were the in house potato chip fries. The oblong elliptical discs gave fruition to my salty cravings. Light, yet lush with flavor, the fries were top notch, so much so that any additional condiments were eschewed by this deliriously diner. The Hot Brown was less than glorious. Its cream sauce resembled an alfredo dish pilfered from the Olive Garden. Its one saving grace involved a hint of nutmeg in the roux. Clandestinely pleased the rich concoction did not tickle our palates much, so we could save room for many more dulcet tastes to come on our odyssey.



    The burger was less than perfect, the fries were devastatingly crispy, but paying tribute to one of the imagined creations of American Roadfood was alone worth the drive across the roads of Louisville.

    #12
    Culinary Wanderlust
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/06 20:13:08 (permalink)
    With our stomachs severely distended, Carly and I took a few hours to investigate Churchill Downs and the Kentucky Derby Museum. As we digested our tasty treats, we investigated the history of the serene sport and imagined the frenzy that would occur there in little more than a week. As we looked at all the names of the winners from Aristedes to Barbaro, we dreamt of ornate headwear, glistening mint juleps, and predicting the correct trifecta. We told ourselves, that we need to return during Derby week and sample this Dionysian rite of passage replete with Derby Pie. Speaking of pie, it had been too long since our last taste of something high caloric value, so we made our way towards the Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen for our last stop in Louisville.



    Recently renovated in 2006, this sweet tooth nirvana provide a feast for the senses. The smells of dozens of pies sitting on their shelves awaiting their inevitable fate, the relaxing sight of cakes of all colors and sizes, pre-sliced and whole, had us wondering if we could sample at least 75% of them. The tactile gratification of licking frosting residue from our mouths made us salivate at the anticipation of consuming these pieces of these tantalizing sweets. After spending, 20 minutes deciding which desserts to sample, we went with three, a red velvet cake, a georgia cake, and a butterscotch meringue cream pie.



    The red velvet cake, a southern culinary tradition, was delightful. With its rich, deep red chocolate insides and cream cheese frosting, we savored one of the true treasures of the South. Moist and not overpowering, this cake piqued our interest in investigating our further purchases.



    The slice of georgia cake, a yellow inside mixed with mandarin oranges and consisting of a pineapple whipped topping, was the recommendation of the cashier. We were not disappointed with its supple sweetness and pleasing aroma.



    Yet, the bonanza of the day was the butterscotch meringue cream pie. I want to describe its flavors and sensations, but it would have little effect to accurately describe the taste explosion in your mouth. This is a dessert that makes me want to erase my short term memory, so I can experience that euphoria on my palate for the first time again and again. I would drive to Louisville from Chicago just to have a piece of this pie. Its richness isn't overpowering and the lightness of the meringue complements the essence of the butterscotch exceptionally well. If you like or even somewhat tolerate butterscotch this pie is a must!


    If you are anywhere near the Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen, please make the pilgrimage to the pie.
    #13
    ChiTownDiner
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/06 20:56:30 (permalink)
    I regret that I didn't get to meet either of you on the Tour, but your posts have created a sense of familiarity. Your pictures and even more so, your descriptive writing, is a fantastic read. From a purely selfish perspcetive, I sure hope there's more to ocme!
    #14
    Culinary Wanderlust
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/07 22:31:03 (permalink)
    After recovering from our sugary bliss, Carly and I intended to head straight down to Nashville and into our room at Candlewood Suites. Carly though, never one to follow convention, proposed driving 100 miles out of our way to Owensboro so we could partake in their speciality of Mutton BBQ. Even though we gorged ourselves that day and would be feasting on regional classics that Saturday, I ruminated on the idea for about half a second before the roadfood glimmer sparkled in my eye. After you have been driving for several hours, another 2oo miles doesn't make that much of a difference.
    As we made our way across Route 60, we were debating which restaurant should be the destination. I made the argument that both George's and Moonlit should be our pit stops, since Jane and Michael had such glowing reviews for them. Carly agreed, but due to the time remaining, it was already 8:00 pm, we could only go for one. We went with George's because of Jane and Michael's strong recommendation of the burgoo and mutton served there. Burgoo, a thick vegetable mutton amalgam, leaves little to the imagination. It is a stew served in a generic white mug with carrots and bits of sheep floating around within its container. Carly and I felt anticlimatic after sampling the burgoo and waited for some pang of wonderment when we lapped up this mutton mess.
    Discouraged by our burgoo ennui, we hoped that the mutton sandwich and chopped mutton would not be another foible. Blessedly, the mutton sandwich, containing mutton off the pit, meaning just sliced, devastated my tastebuds in an illicit euphoria. The meat was delicious. In fact, it was the most flavorful piece of animal I had during the precursor to Nashville, and the Nashville extravaganza. Its mildly gamey taste only accentuated the satisfaction of methodically mashing mutton among my mandibles. BBQ is a delightful type of food culture, but it might be at its best, when the presence of wet sauce is notably absent from the meat. Sandwiched between two pieces of pseudo-rye, basically the lightest colored caraway bread in the civilized world, this dry sandwich made the detour through Owensboro, perhaps Carly's best idea since our mini-roadtrip to Milwaukee many moons ago. Her chopped mutton was good, but off the pit is the recommended choice for primo sheep aficionados or anyone looking to delve into the world of ovine gastronomy. The side of baked beans were lovely, but not overwhelming notable.



    The atmosphere of this tiny restaurant also made the experience worth the trip. On Friday night, all of the decent God-fearing individuals follow the canonical law and engage in eating fish instead of land meat. Friday is Catfish fry night and a family of about fifteen people came to George's to indulge in the greasy goodness of the whiskered swimmer. Seeing them envelope most of the restaurant forced me to recognize the other regular customers who the young pregnant waitress called by their first names. From the old married couple looking solemnly at one another after finishing a mammoth meal to the middle-aged single man delving into a piece of pecan pie, the place was alive with regional character and unaltered authenticity. With this illumination of the people who give roadfood its heart and soul, Carly and I feeling re-energized eagerly anticipated meeting our fellow foodies as we jostled south on the pavement towards Nashville.
    #15
    LegalLady
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/07 22:44:51 (permalink)
    Absolutely loverly. No one has butterscotch pie around here, and it is my very favorite. I have never met you two before, but welcome to roadfood & thanks for the amazing descriptions & photos!!

    The Judge
    #16
    buffetbuster
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/08 12:59:05 (permalink)
    This is some serious Roadfooding! I love the fact they are just driving from one great spot to another. Man, I miss the days when I used to be able to eat like that. Keep up the great report and I can't wait to see the rest.
    #17
    cornfed
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/08 19:02:18 (permalink)
    "Methodically mashing mutton among my mandibles"

    Love the onomatopoeia. Ovine gastronomy indeed.

    Probably the best post ever. Ramble on, Culinary Wanderlust. Can't wait for Nashville.
    #18
    mayor al
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/08 20:26:16 (permalink)
    This cracker computer of mine doesn't have "Mandibles, nor Onomatopoeia" in its memory. I've got to buy a damn Dictionary just to discover how he chews his food !!!!!!
    Maybe I wasted that money I spent on Higher Education(in New York,BTW)...or maybe I lost it in the faded (and jaded) past !!
    Keep up the good work, youngster, I just read between the lines !!
    #19
    Greymo
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/08 20:51:28 (permalink)
    Holy crow.............or I should say mutton!

    You sure make it sound sexy.................
    #20
    Art Deco
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/09 09:32:31 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by cornfed

    "Methodically mashing mutton among my mandibles"

    Love the onomatopoeia.


    I'm thinking that you mean alliteration instead of onomatopoeia...
    #21
    Poverty Pete
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/09 21:08:56 (permalink)
    Hey, CW...Are you a reincarnated 19th century English novelist? Your writing reminds me of Anthony Trollope.
    #22
    Culinary Wanderlust
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/10 10:05:54 (permalink)
    Thank you for the support. I'm still trying to find my style of writing. In general, I tend to be more formal than I need to be. The Nashville pictures and descriptions will arrive by Mother's Day.
    #23
    mayor al
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/10 13:15:27 (permalink)
    Keep the posts coming my young friend. You are adding a touch of class to the sometimes highly repetitive descriptions found in many of the reviews (mine included) in this forum.
    #24
    Poverty Pete
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/10 20:02:25 (permalink)
    That was intended as a compliment. I like Anthony Trollope.
    #25
    Culinary Wanderlust
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/10 20:27:41 (permalink)
    I thought it was a compliment and I thank you for it.
    #26
    sizz
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/11 01:07:31 (permalink)
    quote:
    Poverty Pete Posted - 05/10/2007 : 20:02:25
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    That was intended as a compliment. I like Anthony Trollope.

    Pete
    I know you better so I'll make this declaration to all.

    Pete was regressing here folks he really was not thinking of Anthony Trollope he was thinking of Antoinette the Trollop ............... a girl he met a few weeks befor the end of World War One..... She was his first love that stole his heart, his wallet, his Springfield Rifle, his puttees, his undershirt, and his gas mask......... she got every thing he owned including his good conduct medal .................

    When Pete showed up at dockside to board the ship to take his sweet ass back to the States his commanding officer noticing he was missing all his US Government issued equipment ................ and hence dubbed him (you guessed it) "POVERT PETE"
    #27
    Poverty Pete
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    RE: Precursor to Nashville Roadfood Tour 2007/05/11 06:00:25 (permalink)
    ...and now you know...The Rest of the Story...except for the fact that Frankie went to Hollywood and became a scriptwriter.
    #28
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