Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South

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buffetbuster
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Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/16/07 7:12 PM
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Friday October 12, 2007
 
It is time for the annual trip for my cousin Johnny and I. The game plan is to fly in and out of Nashville and spend the week exploring Georgia and Alabama, with small amounts of time in Florida and Tennessee.

While at the airport in Pittsburgh waiting for my plane, I bought the latest Gourmet, which coincidentally had an article by Jane & Michael about hot fish and hot chicken in Nashville. Since the article featured Eastside Fish, that was the natural target. I called and they were open until 11:00. After meeting at the Nashville airport, we were on our way.

I really liked the atmosphere at Eastside Fish. When it was my turn to order, I told them it was my first time there. The guy who took my order yelled to someone in the back, "Hey, we got a first timer here" and the guy in the back yelled up "Where you been"? We took our food back to our hotel

Here is the two piece whiting fish, along with sides of fries and green beans:


I actually asked for the side of spaghetti, but got the fries instead. The fish was nice and crunchy, the fries were well seasoned and the green beans were ultra soft and flavorful.

Johnny turned his fish into a hefty sandwich, which ended up looking like:


For dessert, Johnny had the pecan pie, while I sampled the chess pie:


Much more to follow....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:36 AM>

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/16/07 8:08 PM
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Saturday October 13, 2007 

We were both quite happy to get up early, since we knew what was waiting for us at the other end of a short drive....PANCAKE PANTRY!!!
I consider this the best breakfast place in the country and both of us put it in our all-time top 10.

You can tell the Pancake Pantry just opened because it doesn't have a long line:


Johnny had the sweet potato pancakes, like he did on his previous visit, while I went for the sugar & spice pancakes, pictured here:

I can't even begin to tell you how good both those pancakes were, other than they were perfect. The warm maple syrup just added to it.

Speaking of perfect, I ordered the country ham and this was the best country ham I have ever had. Chewy and complex, it is a flavor explosion in your mouth:


We also split a side of hash browns and bacon. While we were thrilled at the greatness of the meal we just enjoyed, we knew that it was going to be tough to top for the rest of the trip. We will see if any other restaurant can come through!

Back to the hotel to shower and check-out. But before leaving the Nashville area, we stopped in Franklin to buy some pastries at Merridee's Breadbasket for the road.


Unfortunately, Meridee's was mobbed...there was barely room to move around.


After standing in line for a while, I find out they won't make the cheese pimiento sandwich in the morning. Disappointed, we still bought some other bakery items to go and Johnny especially enjoyed his slice of pumpkin cheesecake.

One of my strange hobbies is I like to visit college campuses and buy a t-shirt or sweatshirt from their bookstore. So our next stop was Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro. But, when we got there, the bookstore was closed due to Fall break.

With some time to kill, we headed for Shelbyville and Pope's Cafe. Since we weren't particularly hungry, I thought we would just get a couple slices of pie. But, following the pattern of the day, Pope's was closed. I did see something interesting in the window, though. I remember someone reporting that Pope's bought the equipment from the late great Vandyland in Nashville.


Much more to follow....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:37 AM>

Wandering Chew
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/16/07 10:03 PM
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hey buffet -sounds like a great trip- for the less informed -i assume the Pancake Pantry is in NAshville?

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/16/07 10:23 PM
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WanderingChew-
Pancake Pantry is indeed in Nashville:

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=465&RefID=465

mr chips
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 3:08 AM
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Meridee's Breadbasket was a memorable stop on my Nashville trip. please keep the reports coming.

SassyGritsAL
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 11:28 AM
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Will you be heading south on I-65? If so, remember Big Bob Gibson's in Decatur or Greenbriers (take the I-565 exit and then the Greenbrier exit heading toward Huntsville). Remember, there are two Greenbrier's. I prefer the one that is 2 miles from the exit; while the other one can be seen from the Interstate spur. Only about 25 miles from Decatur is Huntsville and if you are looking for Roadfood, try Big Spring Cafe (Home of the Greasy Burgers), Blueplate Cafe for meat and three (great bread pudding), Beauregard's for wonderful wings, and of course Dreamland for ribs.

ChiTownDiner
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 11:35 AM
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Cliff - keep it coming...love your reports and pix!

RibDog
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 1:29 PM
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BB,

Did you try anything else while in Shelbyville? I will be up that way next week for the Jack Daniels Invitational World Barbeque Championship.

John

soozycue520
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 1:32 PM
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Grrrrrrrr8 food pics. All I can say is, YUMMY!!!

Thanks for posting, and I'm looking forward to more!!

tamandmik
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 3:48 PM
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Ordinarily, I am not a big fan of fried fish, as I prefer my filets blackened, smoked, etc, that said, Johnny's filet sandwich looks to be an exception. I'd eat that sandwich in a heartbeat.

Poverty Pete
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 5:14 PM
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RibDog, while in Shelbyville, you should track down the Bedford Cheese factory outlet. It's only a couple of blocks from the town square.

EdSails
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 6:32 PM
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Those sweet potato pancakes sound dyn-o-mite!

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 7:04 PM
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Thanks to ChiTownDiner and everyone else for the nice comments. I was hoping to be further along in the report, but the hotel last night had a poor internet connection. I just checked in at my hotel in Mobile and I'm munching on peanut brittle and chocolate covered peanuts from A & M Peanut Shop. Good stuff!

EdSails
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 7:25 PM
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Hope you're going to Wintzel's Oyster House.....still my favorite!

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 7:49 PM
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Saturday October 13, 2007 cont.

Next was the Jack Daniels tour in Lynchburg. I took this tour about ten years ago and it is quite different today. Here is the safe that Jack kicked that caused the infection in his toe, which eventually led to his death.

barrel storage

drip by drip


I'm not much of a drinker, but I enjoyed the tour. This was mostly due to the guide Paul, who was very entertaining.

To kill some time, we walked around Lynchburg for a while and soon it was time to meet Poverty Pete for late lunch at Miss Mary Bobo's Boarding House.

PP was right on time and we relaxed and chatted on the front porch waiting for the dinner bell. When it rang, we ended up being seated around a big table in the Jasper Room, with tons of food waiting for us. The fried chicken, meatloaf and fried okra photos all turned out bad, but I did get a few good ones of other things like fried apples laced with Jack:

excellent green beans

There is always one dessert and on this day it was cherry cobbler.


Overall Miss Mary Bobo's gets a thumbs up. But while the food was good, it wasn't great. And our very nice hostess, who sat at our table and led the conversation talked so much, we really didn't get much of a chance to talk to each other. Still, I would be very happy to go back.

After saying goodbye to Poverty Pete, we got on our way to Chattanooga. Full, but not stuffed, we stopped at Riverside Catfish House, which appeared in Eat Your Way Across the U.S.A.


Sitting next to the Tennessee River, this was a nice, friendly little place just west of the city. We both got the catfish & shrimp combo. Here is a close-up of the catfish:


Now stuffed beyond belief, we settled down at our hotel in Chattanooga for the night.

Much more later.....




<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:37 AM>

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 7:54 PM
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EdSails-
That will be dinner tomorrow night! What do you recommend?

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 8:31 PM
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Sunday October 14, 2007 

Knowing what was ahead of us food wise for the rest of the day, we just ate the complimentary (crappy) breakfast at the hotel and then headed to Rock City. Here is me, with the overlook behind me:

Here is Johnny contemplating whether I will fit through Fat Man's Squeeze. Note: I did and Vegas lost a bundle!

A side view of the overlook:


Since we are being such good tourists, we next headed for Ruby Falls.
Located inside a cave, it was a healthy walk back to the falls, but well worth it. Here is the waterfall, bathed in blue light:


After a nice drive through the north Georgia countryside, we arrived at our first big meal of the day.....The Smith House. The Smith House is another all-you-can-eat boardinghouse meal, located in Dahlonega.

My complaint about this place was that they pack you WAY too tightly into the seats. It was uncomfortable for a big guy like me. But the good food made the visit worthwhile. Yams:

excellent roast beef:

even better fried chicken:

and greens:


Dessert was strawberry shortcake:


Much more to come.....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:37 AM>

RibDog
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 9:39 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by Poverty Pete

RibDog, while in Shelbyville, you should track down the Bedford Cheese factory outlet. It's only a couple of blocks from the town square.


Thanks Pete, I will do that.

John

mr chips
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 10:38 PM
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That boarding house spread looks mighty tasty. I enjoyed my tour of the Jack Daniels distillery in 1996 but missed Mary Bobo's. please keep up the excellent reports.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 11:00 PM
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Sunday October 14, 2007 cont.

After leaving The Smith House, we headed to Athens, so I could hit the UGA bookstore. They had a lot of really nice stuff and I ended up buying several shirts. But we couldn't waste too much time there, because we were meeting friends at Blue Willow Inn in Social Circle.


The Blue Willow Inn is more of a buffet place, but the food is significantly better than the typical buffet. We got there and checked in (reservations are a good idea) and my friend Rhonda and her husband arrived shortly. It was the first time I had met Rhonda's husband Ash, who was very likable and we had a great time discussing politics (he works for a US senator), sports and food.

At the table next to us, a man got down on one knee and started singing, while pulling a ring out of his pocket. All the waitresses came running into the room to watch. It was very fun to see and she did say yes. When I congratulated them on the way out, I told him I wasn't sure if it was a marriage proposal or a try out for American Idol!

The food at Blue Willow Inn is excellent. I was so caught up in the conversation, I didn't take many pictures, but here are a few.....
fried chicken:

dessert area, which included pecan pie, coconut cake, chocolate cake, carrot cake, brownies, peach cobbler and much more:


The food is so good here, Johnny thinks it is in his all-time top 10 and he has been to approximately 300 different Roadfood places!

After saying our goodbyes, we drove off to our hotel in Atlanta.
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:38 AM>

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Wed, 10/17/07 11:52 PM
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Monday October 15, 2007 

We headed to Silver Skillet in downtown Atlanta for breakfast. Bad news for me....they were out of country ham. Johnny and I both got pork chops, mine fried and his grilled:

Good biscuits, gravy and eggs completed the country breakfast. But we couldn't leave without trying some other Silver Skillet items, so Johnny went for the lemon ice box pie:

while I went for the banana pudding:


Another of my little interests is taking tours of all of the capitol buildings and I haven't been to the Georgia capitol before. Here is an outside view:

inside of the dome:

and the house chamber:


Certainly a nice building, but nothing about it particularly stood out.

Since we hadn't eaten for a few minutes, it was time for lunch. We headed to Harold's, which is a barbecue place.


We were both very disappointed with this place. As much as I liked the very good brunswick stew and the cole slaw, the meat tasted old and had no flavor. Here is the plate:


No big deal, we headed for the aquarium, which was huge! This is just a small portion of the main room:

a close up of a sea otter:

and my favorite thing, the sea nettles:


This is one of the best aquariums I have been to and I highly recommend it to anyone visiting Atlanta.

Much more to come.....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:38 AM>

Oneiron339
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 7:28 AM
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I wish I knew your itinerary. I never pass up a Silver Skillet lunch or a trip to Harolds.

John A
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 7:30 AM
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Great report and pics BB, keep it up.

Thank you

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 7:33 AM
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Oneiron339-
My apologies for not contacting you. It would have been nice if you could have joined us. But there is so much to do (and eat) in this area, it probably won't be long until we are back.

So obviously you are a fan of Harold's? I was hoping our bad meal there was an aberration.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 8:23 AM
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Monday October 15, 2007 cont.

After the excellent time at the Georgia Aquarium, we headed next door to the World of Coca-Cola. Some interesting stuff about the soft drink I hadn't known and they had a lot of fun things to do, especially for kids. Also enjoyed watching all the foreign commercials. At the end, they have a big room where you get to try 62 different Coke products from around the world. A few of them tasted rather good, but most of them were nasty. A beverage called Beverly from Italy took me days to get out of my mouth! Yuk!

With dinnertime approaching, we headed to Mary Mac's Tea Room, where Rhonda joined us for dinner. Great atmosphere at this place! Instead of telling the waitress what you want, you write in down on the note pad and give it to her. The food wasn't great, but certainly good enough. Sweet potato souffle:

If this is your first visit, you get a free sample of pot likker, which we thoroughly enjoyed:

Both Rhonda and I got the four veggie plates, while Johnny ate the fried chicken. For dessert, banana pudding and peach cobbler:


After such a full day, we headed back to the hotel to just relax for a few hours. But you can't go to Atlanta without a visit to The Varsity.....especially since Johnny hadn't been there before. So a little after ten, we headed downtown once again.

Neither one of us really cared for the onion rings, but I enjoy their hot dogs. And unlike last visit, I did get a "What'll ya have" from the girl at the counter.



Full and tired, we retreated to our hotel for the night.

Much more to come.....


<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:39 AM>

Leania_1stone
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 9:41 AM
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I haven't had breakfast yet and now I'm drooling everything looks fabulous :)

EdSails
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 12:14 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by buffetbuster

EdSails-
That will be dinner tomorrow night! What do you recommend?


Fried crab claws and plenty of oysters on the half shell!

CajunKing
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 2:42 PM
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BB

How was the chess pie back at Eastside Fish??

Your trip to date sounds like you had a wonderful adventure.


Rick F.
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 2:43 PM
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Heavens! You missed the bookstore (and the buildings and 10,000 acre campus!) of The University of The South.
[img]

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 8:32 PM
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Rick F. -
Are you an alumni of Sewanee? I have an ex who worked as a professor there and hated it. But she was a big city girl and she had a hard time making the adjustment.

CajunKing-
I thought the chess pie was quite good at Eastside Fish. Not as good as what I had at Arnold's Country Kitchen, but good nonetheless.

zataar
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 8:36 PM
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I know a very gifted young woman who went to the University of the South. She loved it. She majored in Shakesperean Studies. She also stayed a couple of years to work in Administration, which she also loved.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 8:57 PM
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Tuesday October 16, 2007 

Breakfast meant a drive out to the east suburbs and Mamie's Biscuits in Conyers. Here is the yummy ham biscuit:


The food here was good, but what really made the place memorable was how incredibly friendly everyone was. We could not have been treated better!

Next, we headed for Stone Mountain. Here is the huge carving of Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson in the mountainside:


We did ride the tramway up to the top of the mountain, but it was so foggy, we could hardly see a thing. Here is just how thick the fog was up top:


On to Melear's BBQ in Fayetteville:


I ordered the pork bbq plate, which came with excellent brunswick stew and cole slaw:


Great pork bbq, delicious sweet tea, friendly service.....I loved Melear's!

Much more to come.....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:40 AM>

wanderingjew
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Thu, 10/18/07 9:16 PM
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I'm glad I just completed my 3 mile power walk because I think I just put a few thousand calories by looking at those photos!

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Fri, 10/19/07 4:36 PM
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Tuesday October 16, 2007 cont.

Not having had nearly enough bbq, we headed to the small town of Bremen in western Georgia, just off of I-20. This is the home of Bilbo's BBQ.


Bilbo's has to have the largest menu of any barbecue joint I have ever seen and I consider that a bad sign. Johnny ordered the combo platter, with ribs, pork and sausage plus a few sides:

He thought it was good, but nothing remarkable.

I got a pork sandwich with a side of brunswick stew.


From here it was on to Birmingham, Alabama. Since Johnny had never been here before, we headed for Vulcan Park. Here they have a huge statue of the Roman god Vulcan

and you can get a great view of the city from the platform:


After stopping at the UAB Bookstore, we headed for the hotel to relax for a while. Getting some rest rejuvenated our appetites, so we went downtown to John's City Diner. John's is a nice place, but still comfortable. I started off with a good cup of gumbo:

then enjoyed John's original slaw. This is just plain cabbage and they give you a bottle of this dressing, which reminds me of a cross between Thousand Island and Russian. Over top the cabbage, it tasted delicious. The main courses were the fried seafood platter with hushpuppies and fried green tomatoes for Johnny:

and mahi-mahi (with crabmeat) and cheese grits for me:


Back to the hotel.

Much more to come.....

<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:40 AM>

ChiTownDiner
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Fri, 10/19/07 4:48 PM
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I'm now volunteering to carry your bags on the next trip...this stuff keeps getting better and better!

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Fri, 10/19/07 5:21 PM
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Wednesday October 17, 2007 

Breakfast in Birmingham means Bogue's!


For Johnny, breakfast was a pork chop, bacon, eggs, biscuits and gravy (not shown):

For me, it was the ham, hash browns, scrambled eggs and biscuits:


We really liked everything about Bogue's! Good atmosphere, service and food. I will definitely be back!

It was time to head off to Tuscaloosa, so we could go to the U of Alabama supply store. I haven't been to this campus in years and it is so much nicer now. Has to be one of the nicest campuses I have ever visited. Here is the area right outside the store:


Not having bbq for almost 24 hours, we headed across the river to Northport in search of Archibald's. Not easy to find, we smelled the place before we saw the sign. This place is a real dive, but we are talking about bbq here, so that didn't slow us down.


Here is the large rib plate:

and the pork sandwich:


We thoroughly enjoyed our meal here. The ribs and pork are good, but the sauce leaves a wonderful tingling on your lips and taste buds. I would have been quite happy just with white bread and sauce. Most got the food to go, but we sat at one of the three picnic tables and enjoyed the summer day. What a memorable meal! Here is Johnny taking care of business!


From here, we started the long drive to Mobile.

Much more to come.....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:41 AM>

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Fri, 10/19/07 9:56 PM
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Wednesday October 17, 2007 cont.

From Tuscaloosa to Mobile, we decided to go the back roads and see some small towns. We enjoyed the leisurly drive, but arrived in Mobile ready to eat. First stop was the oldest restaurant in town, Dew Drop Inn:

Famous for their hot dogs, they typically come with ketchup, mustard, sauerkraut, pickle and chili:


One disappointing note.....the Custard Cottage that used to be right next door is no longer there.

Before checking into our hotel, we decided we needed something to snack on in the room. So we stopped downtown at the A & M Peanut Shop:


There were lots of interesting items to choose from here, but I settled on chocolate covered peanuts and some fresh roasted peanuts, direct from their 100 year old roaster:


The snacks were tasty, but we wanted to get some seafood while we were near the water, so we headed for Rousso's. At least where I thought Rousso's was. Finding nothing but an abandoned building, we soon learned that this Mobile institution moved to the Eastern Shore in Spanish Fort. Now located in a new shopping mall, it has been stripped of all of its Roadfood character.

We started the meal with West Indies salads, but unfortunately the photos didn't turn out. Johnny ordered the seafood platter, with shrimp, scallops, oysters, fried crab claws, stuffed crab and flounder, plus jalapeno hushpuppies:


I went for the shrimp platter, with grilled, blackened and one enormous stuffed shrimp:
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:42 AM>

mr chips
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Sat, 10/20/07 8:40 AM
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You travel and eat more good food than anyone I know! The photos are fantastic and the food looks wonderful. That Brunswick stew is almost enough to get me to hop a plane to Atlanta. Hope you are going to Austin this year. I am planning to visit the Capitol , the LBJ Library and the LBJ ranch and I know you share those interests.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Sun, 10/21/07 8:24 AM
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mr chips-
Thanks for the kind words! Yes, Johnny and I plan in being in Austin for the bus tour next year. We enjoy those so much, we will attend every year, no matter where they go. I have visited the Texas state capitol and LBJ Presidential Library before, but I certainly wouldn't mind seeing them again.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Sun, 10/21/07 8:44 AM
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Thursday October 18, 2007 

Having had perfect weather so far on the trip, we woke up this morning with lots and lots of rain. We headed east on the short drive to Pensacola, Florida and had breakfast at Coffee Cup. This is a great little small town cafe, with good food and sassy waitresses. I had the ham & cheese omelet covered with their "Spanish sauce":

while Johnny had the strawberry hot cakes. We also split orders of ham and Nassau grits, which were quite good.

The reason for the visit to Pensacola was to see the Naval Aviation Museum, which someone from work had told me about. It sure did live up to its billing! One problem, though..... We were only there for about a half hour, watching the IMAX movie, "The Magic of Flight", when the power went out due to the bad storms. They asked us to leave the theaters and then we were told that tornados had been spotted nearby. It was very weird to be in this museum without any lights on.

Finally the power came back on and it was time to start the tour. And what a tour! His name was Dick Upchurch and he was a retired marine colonel. He used to give tours on a regular basis, but due to throat/voice difficulties, he only gives one tour a month. The person at the info desk said he was their best guide. He gave us a fantastic two hour tour, with lots of details and stories about which planes he flew. Despite his obvious heroics, he was also very humble. Here are some of the planes:




I also liked the display on aircraft carriers and the caption, "four and a half acres of sovereign U.S. territory,anytime,anywhere".


We could have easily spent the entire day at this great museum, but there were too many other things we had to do today.

Much more to come.....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:42 AM>

mr chips
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Sun, 10/21/07 11:53 AM
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Did you see the plane George Bush the elder trained in at the Aviation museum? I hope you go to the beach because the beach at pensacola was one of the best i ever visited.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Mon, 10/22/07 7:10 PM
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mr chips-
Yes, we did see Bush's plane at the museum. Our tour guide was very thorough! Unfortunately, we did not make it to the beach. The weather was so bad when we were in Pensacola, we wouldn't have been able to enjoy it. Too bad, because I have heard from several people how nice it is.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Mon, 10/22/07 8:00 PM
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Thursday October 18, 2007 cont.

After spending so much worthwhile time at the museum, we needed a good lunch, so we headed for Jerry's Drive-in in Pensacola.


This place has a great Roadfood feel to it and it looks like it has been there forever. Since it was our first time there, we asked the waitress (who was also the owner) what to order. Following her recommendation, we got double bacon cheeseburgers and chili cheese fries:


The fries were good, but the burger was excellent! We both thought Jerry's was a real keeper!

Heading back into Alabama, we went to Burris Farm Market & Bakery. This place is a nice fruit stand up front


but in the back they have a huge assortment of delicious desserts. Johnny and I tried several including strawberry shortcake:

peach cobbler

appledumpling, key lime pie, peanut butter pie and chocolate cream pie. And there were so many others we would have loved to tried. This place is a must stop for anyone with a serious sweet tooth. In the market itself, we also bought some boiled peanuts for later back at the hotel.

We finally had enough of a break in the heavy rain to go see the USS Alabama in Mobile


They have really done a great job at this place and conveying what life for the sailors on board was like. One of these sailors was baseball Hall of Famer Bob Feller.


Since we were already in Mobile, we headed of for dinner at one of my favorite bbq places, the Brick Pit.


What an odd little place the Brick Pit is. This is what the walls inside look like:

But the service is ultra friendly and the food is terrific! Johnny's rib plate:

and my pork sandwich plate.


We headed back to the hotel, stuffed so much, we never made it to Wintzell's Oyster House, which was a tremendous disappointment.



<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:43 AM>

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Mon, 10/22/07 9:34 PM
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Friday October 19, 2007 

We left Mobile early since we had a long drive ahead of us. Our first stop was in Montgomery to see the Alabama state capitol building.

I always prefer to take a guided tour, but they don't offer them here. So Johnny and I headed off for a self-guided tour of the building. The highlight was one of the most beautiful dome interiors I have seen in any state capitol building.

Though not particularly big, (the state senate and house bodies have both moved to other buildings), the capitol was full of really nice details. Here is a staircase I really liked.


The plan was to eat at Martin's in Montgomery, but they don't open until 11:00. So how do we kill time before lunch? By eating of course! My eagle eyed cousin spotted this place

right down the hill from the capitol building and we couldn't resist.
Of course we tried the hot dogs, covered in Chris' special sauce, which Johnny described as almost more like a gravy.

It was quite good, though. But the best thing we had here were maybe the best onion rings we have ever had. Crunchy and full of flavor, we loved them!


After eating the small meal, we headed to Martin's. But on the way, we passed Alabama State University. Since it wasn't 11:00 yet, I stopped in and visited the bookstore and bought a t-shirt. Go Hornets!

We arrived at Martin's just a few minutes after 11:00 and they were already very busy, which is usually a good sign.

Famous for their fried chicken, Johnny indulged:

He liked the chicken very much, but loved the steamed cabbage. I went for chicken and dumplings and wished I had ordered the fried chicken instead.

I did really enjoy the porky flavored green beans, though.

Stuffed for now, we headed back to Birmingham.

Much more to come.....

<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:44 AM>

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Mon, 10/22/07 10:01 PM
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Friday October 19, 2007 cont.

Our first stop back in Birmingham was historic Rickwood Field, the oldest baseball park in the country.


I had hoped to be able to see the inside, but they actually had a little brochure and encourage self-guided tours. You can even walk out onto the field and the pitcher's mound. How is my form?





Love the old-time billboards in right field.


For anyone who enjoyes baseball, this is a great place to visit. I would love to see a game here sometime!

We headed back downtown to see the Alabama Theater, which is an old-time movie house. Unfortunately, the doors were locked, so we couldn't go inside. I had to settle for a picture of the nice marquee.


More to follow.....
<message edited by buffetbuster on Mon, 01/5/09 10:45 AM>

Big Frank
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 7:09 AM
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Buffetbuster is right about Mamie's. I love their ham biscuits and bacon biscuits.

ann peeples
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 8:20 AM
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What a wonderful trip report!!I am completely enjoying every step of the way!!

tfrielin
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 8:52 AM
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If you guys are still in Birmingham, go to Brody's delicatessan and Jimmy Davenport's Pizza Palace, both in Mt. Brook Village.

tfrielin
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 8:56 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by tfrielin

If you guys are still in Birmingham, go to Brody's delicatessan and Jimmy Davenport's Pizza Palace, both in Mt. Brook Village.



Oops--spelled it wrong--it's Browdy's.


BhamBabe
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 9:01 AM
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Awww man, I'm from Birmingham and I'm nearly in tears I miss it soooo much!

Your sauce on your hotdog looks like a sauce on dogs at a place called Sneaky Pete's hotdogs. Sorta spicy? Goodness I love that place.

Too bad you didn't get to go into the Alabama Theater. It truly is the most wonderful place to visit.

Thanks for sharing your pics with us.

wanderingjew
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 9:06 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by tfrielin

quote:
Originally posted by tfrielin

If you guys are still in Birmingham, go to Brody's delicatessan and Jimmy Davenport's Pizza Palace, both in Mt. Brook Village.



Oops--spelled it wrong--it's Browdy's.





Based on the gyst of their report so far, it appears BB and his cousin are looking for "regional" specialties.


BTW, I went to Rickwood Field in 2005. It was locked up so I couldn't get onto the field.

tfrielin
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 10:43 AM
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quote:


Oops--spelled it wrong--it's Browdy's.





Based on the gyst of their report so far, it appears BB and his cousin are looking for "regional" specialties.


BTW, I went to Rickwood Field in 2005. It was locked up so I couldn't get onto the field.


I'd say both qualify as Roadfood--both are locally owned and operated Mom&Pop type establishments that have been in business for decades in Bham.



wanderingjew
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 10:57 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by tfrielin

quote:


Oops--spelled it wrong--it's Browdy's.





Based on the gyst of their report so far, it appears BB and his cousin are looking for "regional" specialties.


BTW, I went to Rickwood Field in 2005. It was locked up so I couldn't get onto the field.


I'd say both qualify as Roadfood--both are locally owned and operated Mom&Pop type establishments that have been in business for decades in Bham.


So is my local Pulled Pork BBQ place here in Rhode Island- would you go if you visited? I'm sure it's locally owned and operated, but I wouldn't consider deli style sandwiches or pizza "regional" in Alabama. And if you look at the Stern's books (particularly the older roadfood books) they don't too

Everyone is raving about this place too
http://search.cityguide.aol.com/providence/restaurants/miss-fannies-soul-food-kitchen/v-106687916

It probably blows every Southern Style Restaurant in Alabama off the face of the earth- right???

kland01s
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 11:45 AM
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Great report! I wish I could remember the name of the BBQ place we went to in Birmingham, it was more towards Hoover where we had traveled for a wedding. The food was wonderful but no one warned us what sweet tea was. As soon as we opened our months they knew we were not local! Friendly people though and we had planned on staying and traveling in the area longer but we were at the tail of a hurricane and the weather was awful so we traveled north and back towards home.

tfrielin
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 11:53 AM
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quote:
Originally posted by kland01s

Great report! I wish I could remember the name of the BBQ place we went to in Birmingham, it was more towards Hoover where we had traveled for a wedding. The food was wonderful but no one warned us what sweet tea was. As soon as we opened our months they knew we were not local! Friendly people though and we had planned on staying and traveling in the area longer but we were at the tail of a hurricane and the weather was awful so we traveled north and back towards home.


Maybe Jim and Nick's Barbeque?


tfrielin
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 12:01 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by tfrielin

quote:
Originally posted by kland01s

Great report! I wish I could remember the name of the BBQ place we went to in Birmingham, it was more towards Hoover where we had traveled for a wedding. The food was wonderful but no one warned us what sweet tea was. As soon as we opened our months they knew we were not local! Friendly people though and we had planned on staying and traveling in the area longer but we were at the tail of a hurricane and the weather was awful so we traveled north and back towards home.


Maybe Jim and Nick's Barbeque?





Or perhaps the Hoover location of The Golden Rule barbeque?


kland01s
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 1:26 PM
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From the photo here, it looks to be the place I remember, it was 6 years ago and I wasn't as much of a foodie then, just liked trying local places and regional experiences..

http://www.goldenrulebbq.com/locations/Hoover/

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 2:21 PM
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tfrielin-
Thanks for the tips, but we are already home. We saw those Golden Rule BBqs seemingly everywhere. Are they any good?

wanderingjew-
I consider myself lucky that Rickwood Field was open like that. I was expecting only to be able to take photos from the outside. When I came to the part of that self-guided tour that it said to visit the pitcher's mound, we still went and asked the maintenance man if it was okay.

Bhambabe-
I can see why you miss Birmingham so much. I have always thoroughly enjoyed my visits there. On my next visit, I will make sure to see the inside of the Alabama Theater, because I love places like that. Is the Sneaky Pete's hot dogs you mention related to Famous Pete's Hot Dogs?

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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 2:33 PM
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quote:
Originally posted by buffetbuster

Rick F. -
Are you an alumni of Sewanee? I have an ex who worked as a professor there and hated it. But she was a big city girl and she had a hard time making the adjustment.
Yep: alumnus. I was from California (near SF) when I enrolled, and it was an adjustment for me, too. But after the first semester, the only reason I ever returned to CA was family and girlfriend--would have stayed there forever if I could've.

buffetbuster
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RE: Buffetbuster & Cousin Tour South - Tue, 10/23/07 2:40 PM
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Rick F-
I hope you don't it that I don't like the place, since I have never been there. She was raised in Miami and went to college in NYC, so Sewanee was quite an adjustment for her. Hey, she considered Pittsburgh to be too much of a small town for her!

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