My head's in Mississippi

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buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 15:23:45 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by The Travelin Man

quote:
Originally posted by buffetbuster

I blame Travelin Man for luring me to Florida with promises of Cuban food and a great steak!
I admit it. It's my fault.
Yeah, but you brought SHM to dinner at Bern's, so you are definitely forgiven!
mimicooks
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 16:10:05 (permalink)
I grew up in Aberdeen, MS and went to college in TN. We drove back and forth through Corinth and always stopped at Shipley Donuts there. Yum!

I'm so sorry you missed The Friendship House for catfish; I think you would have loved not only the food but the essence of the place and its surroundings in the woods. Maybe another time. If any of you other roadfoodies are down that way between Aberdeen and Amory and not far from Tupelo, please do stop in. It's a family-run operation, and you must get the whole catfish (minus the head, of course!) instead of the fillets. There's just a difference in taste from the bone-in fish and one that's been filleted. Out here in Oklahoma, they put jalapenos in their hushpuppies, and that ruins them. And hushpuppies should be light on the inside and crunchy on the outside. I think they're open only for dinner, but give them a call before you go. 662-257-2211

I've really enjoyed reading your trip report. I grew up going to Miss. State and Ole Miss football games, and it made me a little wistful thinking of bygone days. However, now I have my Sooners - Boomer Sooner! :)
highcard
Junior Burger
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 16:25:10 (permalink)
When I was in Mississippi at Ole Miss back in 1980, there was a dumpy little sandwich joint outside town a little ways. They had great sandwiches...some grilled.

It's driving me crazy, cause I can't remember the name.

Anyone have any idea?
CajunKing
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 16:25:31 (permalink)
Gee, How was I to guess You'd have Chocolate & Banana.....

Did you know:

Lew Wallace author of Ben Hur commanded a Federal Division @ Shiloh??

That @ the National Cemetary there Federal known dead were buried with the taller granite stones while the unknown were marked with the smaller squatter granite stones.

That there are only 3 known confederates buried within Shiloh, the rest were buried in mass graves and to this day remain unknown.
Extreme Glow
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 17:53:05 (permalink)
BB, I am really enjoying this trip report. I spent the first 22 of 47 years of my life in MS (and most of it only a few blocks away from The Dinner Bell). However, my parents are children of the depression and when I was growing up, my Mom just could not fathom spending perfectly good money for food that you could make at home. I vaguely remember going to TDB once back in the 60s. I'll have to plan a trip slightly less ambitious than yours.
mayor al
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 18:20:22 (permalink)

BB,

I use your report as a great example of what I think a Trip Report should be. Granted we all can't take these epic journeys around the country, but a Trip Report should include some travel in it's content. You, Elise, DavyD,TTM and his partner WJ, and a few others take that format seriously and the result is really great. Running down to your local chain restaurant or deli once a week is Not a Trip Report (IMHO). While these great travel reports aren't within the reach of all of us (all of the time) we can look forward to making our contributions in the same format.

Keep up the good work ! BTW Homemade Pie Shop is doing local TV commercials right now in Louisville offering a warm slice of Cherry (lattice-crust) Pie for $1.49 at any of it's NINE Louisville Bakeries!! The pie looks wonderful !
ann peeples
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 18:23:20 (permalink)
Ditto, Mr.Mayor!!!!
Pancho
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/17 18:53:53 (permalink)
I would pay big money to be your shadow on ANY of your trips, sir. Memorable and so pleasing to read and watch.
Nancypalooza
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/18 09:49:46 (permalink)
Cliff I think you have a possible second career here.

Congratulations to TTM and WJ on their partnership!  ;)
southern_belle
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/18 09:53:37 (permalink)
I was enjoying this report until this morning when I logged in. What on earth is wrong with the pictures???? They're so small I can't see them. Is it the new format?
 
edit: Nevermind. It seems to've fixed itself.
post edited by southern_belle - 2008/12/18 09:58:34
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/18 09:58:48 (permalink)
Nancypalooza

Congratulations to TTM and WJ on their partnership!  ;)
Come on now Nancy, you know that just isn't true.  Travelin Man isn't nearly skinny enough for wanderingjew!

buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/18 13:40:12 (permalink)
Pancho

I would pay big money to be your shadow on ANY of your trips, sir. Memorable and so pleasing to read and watch.
Thank you and you would be welcome.  The only qualification is that you can eat twice your body weight in banana cream pie!

buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/18 13:52:32 (permalink)
Extreme Glow-
My mouth is wide open and my head is swimming at the idea of growing up a block from The Dinner Bell.  But, I certainly understand why you didn't eat there more often.  Here is hoping you get back there soon to see what you have been missing!
 
highcard-
Welcome to Roadfood!  Sorry I can't help you with the name of the place, but maybe someone on here can.  If you remember any other details, let us know.
 
mimicooks-
I am also disappointed that The Friendship House did not fit into my plans.  It sounds like it would have been a fine addition to the itinerary.  As you can undoubtedly tell, I love this part of the country and plan on returning many more times.

CajunKing-
You know me and banana desserts.  That kind of made up for the fact that they were out of the caramel pie.  But, not completely! 

I did know that Lew Wallace was at Vicksburg, but not Shiloh.  The rest of the facts were also new to me.  Thanks!
 
Al-
Thank you very much for what you said, it is much appreciated.  But, since when has Travelin Man written trip reports?  I though he just collected photos of food!
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/18 14:11:12 (permalink)
Saturday December 6, 2008 
 
Since burgers worked so well for breakfast the day before, let's try it again!  I pulled up at Phillip's Grocery

in Oxford around 8:00AM.  I have been to the original Phillip's Grocery in Holly Springs twice now and loved the place, so I had high hopes.

 
The interior is like a newer, shinier version of the original and is a cool place to hang out.

Except at this point, I was still their first and only customer of the day.
 
I tried to order a burger, but was shot down.  They don't start serving them until 10:30AM.  Curses, foiled again!  Looking over the breakfast menu, I settled on the ham, cheese and egg biscuit.

Though not what I came here for, this was a perfectly satisfying little sandwich and a good way to start my day.
 
On the way out, I noticed this sign.

Of course I understand why you would want to avoid pickpockets, but the other part..... 
 
http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=1313&RefID=1313
 
Oxford, MS has to be the second prettiest town in all the South, following behind Athens, GA.  Did I get that correct, Ort?  I have walked around the campus of Ole Miss several times in the past, so I didn't bother this time.  I did find a store right off the town square that sold Ole Miss clothes and I hit it rather hard.  Here is what the square looks like.

 Once reaching Clarksdale, I quickly found my lunch destination, Hick's. 

According to the review by the Sterns, if there isn't a banquet going on, they are most likely only open through the drive-thru.  Of course, I was hoping I would be able to go inside and order.
 
When I pulled up, there were lots of cars outside, so it looks like I got lucky.  I got to a door and a big man (who turned out be owner Eugene Hicks) asked me through the glass if I was with the others.  I said no, so he unlocked the door and told me to come on in.  (The people going to the banquet had a seperate entrance). Based on these signs,


there can be no doubt what to order here.  And here is another sign that always grabs my attention.

After perusing the menu,

I decided to start off light by ordering three tamales and a Lil' Daddy.  The tamales came wrapped in husks, with crackers on the side.

The friendly, upbeat woman who delivered my food told me she put some chili on my plate for me to try.

I unwrapped the oily husks and dug in.  By forking some of the tamale on the cracker and then dipping it in the chile, I got the full compliment of tastes and it was superb.  These were clearly the best tamales of the trip.  What did they taste like?  Lots more!  I ended up eating a dozen all together.  Here is a close up of the inside.
 
As you can imagine, I went through many, many napkins eating these.  With the oil from the chili running all over my paper container, it was incredibly messy just getting the husks off of the tamales.  I don't know if the individual tamales themselves were that great, but putting everything together and it was heaven!  This is was clearly the single best item I ate on my trip.
 
I also had a sandwich called a Lil' Daddy to contend with.

As you can see, it isn't so lil'!  And it was a fine sandwich, including pork, turkey, onions and lots of condiments.  But at this point, it was all but an afterthought.
 
I walked out to my car and was greeted by this sight.

The drive-thru also serves as a walk-thru!  Note to ChiTownDiner:  Not only is Mr. Hicks an expert tamale maker, he is also a big Cubs fans!
 
 http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=3165&RefID=2776
 
I checked into my hotel in Clarksdale.  Ready for something sweet, I ate my extra piece of caramel cake from the night before.

Now you didn't really think I only got two pieces of dessert, did you?  This was areally good piece of cake, but still a notch below the banana cake.
 
Much more to come.....
post edited by buffetbuster - 2009/01/22 18:24:39
CajunKing
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/18 15:55:40 (permalink)
BB

Now you are making me HUNGRY, I am sitting here in the office starving and you post those wonderful Tamles from Hicks.

That Caramel Cake looks good too, but I think the banana tasted better.
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 10:29:16 (permalink)
Saturday December 6, 2008 cont.
 
After relaxing at the hotel for a while, I headed off to find the Ground Zero Blues Club

That isn't just a name, it really is a blues club, partially owned by actor Morgan Freeman.  How about this for a location?  It is at the intersection of Blues Alley and Delta Avenue.
 
 
Not many places have couches sitting on the front porch, let alone couches covered with graffiti.

As a matter of fact, EVERYTHING is covered in graffiti here.



Even the front doors!

I am convinced that if I fell asleep for five minutes, I would wake up covered in graffiti, too.
 
They have tables shaped like guitars.  There are several pool tables near the front.

Here is what the bar area and the rest of the inside looks like.

 
I found a tv that had the Pitt-UConn football game on and sat there.  To eat, I ordered a "Heartbreaker" shrimp sammich.  (That is their spelling, not mine)

As a side, it was greens, which came with a cornbread muffin. 

Both of the items were fairly forgettable.  There is no doubt that you come here for the atmosphere, more than the food.  I did get up and walk around and there certainly is a lot to see.  When I was finished eating, I walked to the Delta Blues Museum across the street.

 
http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=1269&RefID=1269
 
Before going back to the hotel, I decided to find Ramon's

my dinner destination.  Even though they are only open for dinner, I noticed the front door was unlocked.  This was obvious, because the keys were still in the keyhole of the front door!  I knocked and the owner came out.  I asked them if I needed a dinner reservation around 7:30 and he told me he would save a table for me.  Sounds good!
 
At 7:30, I was back at Ramon's and was seated in the front room.

While I was sitting there relaxing, I learned that the name of the place is pronounced RAY-MUN, as in Everybody Loves Raymond.  I heard the owners answer the phone this way several times.  I assumed it was pronounced like the Spanish first name, RAY-MOAN.   Whatever, I really liked the feel of this place. 
 
It is a seafood/Italian restaurant, so I decided to try both.  But first, the wonderfully garlicky salad.

The big, beautiful, butterflied shrimp

were plump and delicious.  Next, the spaghetti and meatballs.

When I first saw this dish, I was disappointed.  I don't like the thin, watery spaghetti sauce.  But much to my surprise, it turned out to be very tasty.   Good garlic bread came on the side.

 
http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=3180&RefID=3249
 
I had thoughts of going back to Ground Zero Blues Club to listen to some live music, but at this point, I was running on fumes.  Knowing I will have other chances, I just settled into my hotel for the night.
 
More to come.....
 
post edited by buffetbuster - 2009/01/22 18:26:50
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 13:41:59 (permalink)
Sunday December 7, 2008 

My flight home out of Memphis didn't leave until early evening, so I was in no hurry.  I slept late, relaxed around the room and finally checked out of my hotel around 10:45AM.  First stop, was Abe's Bar-B-Q in Clarksdale.


Besides their terrific food, Abe's is also best known for being located at the crossroads of Highway 61 and Highway 49.

Legend has it that famed bluesman sold his soul to the devil here.

One of the first things you notice when you first walk in is the great mural on the side wall of a pig playing the fiddle.

Good stuff!  The front room,
  
which contains both booth seats and counter seats, also has some old well-used Roadfood books sitting around.


Lots of interesting things on the menu board worth trying,

but I had to get the bbq pork plate.

Luscious, tender meat in a smooth tangy sauce, this is wonderful bbq.  The bbq beans, with plenty of Abe's sauce in it is quite good, but my favorite side was the fresh, crisp cole slaw.



Along with the pork plate, you are given some buns.  So, I went ahead and made myself an impromptu sandwich with it.

Completing the meal was strong, sweet tea.


One unusual thing I noticed here was that several customers grabbed one of the bags of chips lined up on the wall, tore it open and covered the chips with the bbq sauce.  Strange, but I bet it is good.  The sauce here at Abe's really is wonderful and is so good, I have been ordering by the case, ever since my first visit here several years ago.  Oh, and next time, I want to try the tamales.

http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=205&RefID=205

I got back in my car and headed to Memphis.

More to come.....

post edited by buffetbuster - 2009/01/22 18:27:29
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 14:06:03 (permalink)
Sunday December 7, 2008 cont.

My original plan was to have lunch at either The Cupboard or Barksdale Restaurant.  But reading that fellow Roadfooders were considering The Arcade for a meal late Sunday morning during our upcoming Glee Club weekend, I decided to go there.

It has been eight years since I have been to The Arcade,

which is Memphis' oldest restaurant.


The interior looks like it has been spruced up quite a bit since my last visit.

Looking over the menu, I was a bit disappointed.  Not wanting breakfast, I was limited to pizza or sandwiches.  I wanted the trip to end with a bang, not a whimper.  Luckily, I found they have an Elvis sandwich and went with that.  I must have been inspired by this poster next to my table.


Of course the Elvis sandwich is fried beanut butter and banana.


Not exactly health food, but it was wonderful nonetheless.  And it seemed a fitting last meal for my trip.  I got a strawberry shake to wash it down with.


http://www.roadfood.com/Reviews/Writeup.aspx?ReviewID=51&RefID=51

I went ahead and drove to the airport.  Even though my flight didn't leave for hours, I wanted to find a sports bar to watch the Steelers-Cowboys game.  I finally got home at 1:30AM.

Thank you to everyone for reading my trip report!
post edited by buffetbuster - 2009/01/22 18:28:19
The Travelin Man
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 14:21:07 (permalink)
buffetbuster
I must have been inspired by this poster next to my table.



I don't care what the folks in Memphis say....You, sir, are The King.
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 14:25:05 (permalink)
TTM-
The only way I could possibly respond to that is:

Thank You!  Thank You Very Much!!!
post edited by buffetbuster - 2008/12/22 09:24:34
MiamiDon
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 14:33:41 (permalink)
Another fine tour, BB!
 
You didn't get bacon on the Elvis??
 
Is that whipped cream on top of the strawberry shake?
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 14:55:54 (permalink)
Thanks MiamiDon!  Maybe it was the fatigue from the long trip, but I didn't even think about bacon for the sandwich.  And what doesn't bacon make better?  Yes, that is lots of whipped cream on the milkshake.
MilwFoodlovers
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 16:54:20 (permalink)
Only one mans opinion of course, but on my visit to Abe's a few months ago I had tamales instead of Q and I had them covered with chili, cheese and onion and I think they are my new favorite Mississippi tamale. (How's that for a run-on sentence) From pigs on the wall to songs about cornbread grannies, I think you experienced it all. Thanks for a great report from my own personal favorite Roadfood area in the US of A.

Mike
Nancypalooza
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 17:09:24 (permalink)
I second TTM's assessment; you are the mayun, Cliff.  Every time I think you can't top a trip, you go and do it.  Awesome!
wanderingjew
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 17:24:48 (permalink)
Bravo!

Only you can make this marathon of a trip as enjoyable as it was. I remember my visit to Abes nearly 10 years ago, perhaps Poverty Pete will consider stopping there for quick tamale or two on the way back up to Memphis from Greenville.


Greymo
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 17:39:55 (permalink)
Thank you for the wonderful report...............................it brought back great memories  although I did not begin to cover the territory that you did!  





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mhill95
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 20:58:09 (permalink)
Buffetbuster...... You have just finished your finest
Body of Work.
Thank You for a great report. I have been to some of the places you visited, but not all, especially in 1 swoop.
 
Mike
buffetbuster
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 22:01:17 (permalink)
MilwFoodlovers

Only one mans opinion of course, but on my visit to Abe's a few months ago I had tamales instead of Q and I had them covered with chili, cheese and onion and I think they are my new favorite Mississippi tamale. (How's that for a run-on sentence) From pigs on the wall to songs about cornbread grannies, I think you experienced it all. Thanks for a great report from my own personal favorite Roadfood area in the US of A.

Mike
Your favorite tamale?  That is high praise indeed!  If they are that good, I will have to make sure I try them my next time through.
 
Although it wouldn't be at the very top of my list, Mississippi, especially the Delta area is truly a fantastic place for Roadfood.
 
Thanks to everyone else for all your kind words.  It is very much appreciated!


post edited by buffetbuster - 2008/12/19 22:04:34
mr chips
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 22:06:35 (permalink)
What a report! I have eaten at a few of the places you visited and you captured the essence. I loved the Blues museum in Clarkdale and also drove past the birthplace of playwright Tennessee Williams in the same city. I hope to visit the new Civil War visitor center in Corinth. Shiloh is such a memorable place and I felt the ghosts when  I visited there 30 years ago. Thanks again for allowing us to share in your adventures.
Leania_1stone
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RE: My head's in Mississippi 2008/12/19 22:10:15 (permalink)
AMAZING trip report I have been checking this one EVERY single day for new pictures! I LOVED it!!!!!
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