Posted By Erika Gasser & Jon Barber
1/11/2008 7:44:00 PM
From the moment you step foot into Jodie’s, you know that you are in a real neighborhood place. There are only six stools, which are occupied by regulars most of the time. As newbies, we were welcomed and instructed not to order off the menu; instead, everybody orders off the wall, where 8 ½ x 11 signs advertise specials that range from omelettes and pancakes to sandwiches and burgers. We were very sorry to miss the famous fried chicken, which only appears on weekends. It turned out that the helpful man behind the counter on our first visit wasn’t an official employee, but a regular customer standing there to pour coffee, shout orders back to Jodie, and brag to us about this special hole-in-the-wall. Jodie manned the grill and occasionally came out to talk, monitor condiment usage, and check the level of coffee in every mug.
The breakfast sandwich, “Kara’s Special,” is a perfectly balanced combination of toast, scrambled egg, bacon, hashbrowns, and cheese. The “Meanie Weenie” consists of three little pancakes and three strips of bacon. The pancakes are liberally spread with butter (or almost butter—either way, they are delicious little cakes with lacy edges). The bacon is well worth the wait; Jodie uses a press to keep it on the grill until perfectly crispy. We also sampled the “Jodie’s Special,” which has eggs, hashbrowns, one pancake and bacon. The hashbrowns, also cooked to order, are golden brown and crispy, and can be ordered “country style” by those who want vegetables mixed in.
The “Missing Link” is a hearty pile of eggs scrambled with cheese and a Louisiana hotlink sausage, accompanied by hashbrowns and a grilled English muffin, which results in a deliciously rich and spicy mixture. The “Eggs Royston” is another popular plate; this is Jodie’s take on eggs Benedict, with his own creamy herb sauce in the place of hollandaise. We saw more than one customer order the "Nothing with Something,” which basically means eggs plus whatever else Jodie decides to give them. More than one customer informed us that Jodie knows better than they do what they want to eat.
There is a lot of banter and good-natured teasing, and everybody seems to know everybody. While the food isn’t cheap (specials range from around $7 to $11), everything is made to order and served with pride and good humor. As good as the food is, it is the diverse and friendly crowd that makes this place so fantastic. We were only in town for two days, and we went to Jodie’s twice.