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New Orleans to Memphis w/ 15 high school students, inc. VEGETARIANS

Lexdevil, it amazes and saddens me that you would spend a week in Memphis (Memphis!) and have kids come back home "physically ill from having eaten nothing but fried food."

I just checked the Walnut Hills menu. I see a chef salad that could easily be adjusted to various needs. There's also a simple house salad and a 'homemade vegetable soup'. Ask if these meals can be supplemented with vegetables from the lazy susan. At WH, the gravy is served separately from the rice. You are in the home of hospitality, so allow people to cater to your needs. Explain your situation (here and at other establishments) and simply ask if items can be prepared to your specifications.

Open Wed-Sat lunch, I'd also suggest Anchuca (an antebellum B&B with a restaurant open for lunch) in V'burg as they have a lovely menu with veg-friendly options:

Going from New Orleans to Vicksburg, there are two good ways to do it, and one is to go into Jackson then head west, straight-shot, to Vicksburg. In Jackson, there is the High Noon Cafe at the Rainbow grocery ( which is all-veg. There are also lots of things to do/see in Jackson.

Do you have your itinerary set? It looks as though you're trying to give these kids a flavor of the South, with your plantation, music, and cultural center stops. Would you like the kids to tour the Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience? It's in Utica, MS about 40 minutes from Vicksburg. I can probably set you up with a personal tour. You must, must drive the National Military Park / Cemetery in V'burg. Contact me if you like and let me know what y'all are looking for and I'll try to help with this or other worthwhile cultural items: ginger AT ...deepfriedkudzu... DOT ***com***

Not going to let you go hungry or stuffed on fried foods, promise!

Mar 17, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

New Orleans to Memphis w/ 15 high school students, inc. VEGETARIANS

As someone who is an ex-vegetarian, I was always -- always -- able to find something to eat anywhere I went. And I travel extensively. Perhaps I ordered two, three, or four side items to eat. Sometimes I simply ordered a sandwich minus the meat. Salads are always easy. I could go back to being a vegetarian today, and not spend a moment of worry about ever finding something filling and delicious anywhere here in the South.

As for your question about where to eat in/near Vicksburg, my vote goes to Walnut Hills. Tons of vegetables and you can ask the staff to point out the items that have not been seasoned with meat. Call them in advance if you'd like to get a sense of what will be available. Not too many revolving table restaurants still around; a nice experience.

Why not have your other meal on Monday in New Orleans? It's not a long drive, lots of nice options. For veg-centric questions, post your inquiry (or search) on the NOLA board.

Mar 17, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Clarksdale, MS

Re: Kim's -- both pork and chicken cracklins come in "regular" and "bbq" flavor.

Mar 15, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Best Thing I Ate All Week, March 6-13

Wow, pkimble...that sounds *goooood*!

Mar 15, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Clarksdale, MS

Well, I've spent a good amount of time in Clarksdale, and have been to the Juke Joint Festival.

Morgan Freeman's places have not impressed me (both Madidi, which is the finer-dining place, and Ground Zero) but they seem to both have impressed plenty of others.

Abe's BBQ has been in business since the '20s, I think. It's a barbecue place but I'm not wild about their 'que. At all. Microwave in use. They serve tamales too, so if you find yourself there...

Definitely go to Hick's for tamales. My favorite.

Chamoun's Rest Haven -- a diner with Lebanese food. My favorite part of our meal here, though, was the pie.

Every time we go to Clarksdale, we run into Kim's, which is not a restaurant at all, but they cook cracklins (pork and chicken) in giant woks. These are sold all over MS like you'd find Golden Flake here. My husband brings home a case (and they will happily mix flavors).

I've always wanted to go to Henry's Place which is up the road in Moon Lake -- I'm hoping Littleman will add to this discussion, as I'm pretty sure he will have been here and will be able to recommend (or not).

BTW, convenience stores in this area will be selling koolickles!

Have a great trip.

Ground Zero
2230 University Blvd, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401

Rest Haven
419 N State St, Clarksdale, MS 38614

Mar 14, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Best Thing I Ate All Week, March 6-13

I truly expected to say that the best thing I ate all week was from Mix downtown (Chris Dupont's new place) since I'd had plans to go there, but wasn't knocked out by the food (although the raison-studded bread that my pork belly sandwich was served on was incredible).

I will say the most interesting thing I had all week was the bean pie from Mrs. B's just down the block from there. BTW, Mrs. B's is something of a meat & three and from what I understand they don't serve pork at all, including as a seasoning in their vegetables, which may be good news for some...

Both restaurants mentioned above are in B'ham.

How about you? Maybe let's keep this discussion ongoing. Who had something really great last week?

---pics attached, 1.) pork belly sandwich at Mix, 2.) slice of bean pie from Mrs. B's

Mar 14, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Best Thing I Ate All Week, Feb 27 - March 5

Valleydale closer to 31 or Valleydale closer to 280? Tell me what else is nearby...may have to check it out this week!

Mar 07, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Best Thing I Ate All Week, Feb 27 - March 5

I thought last week was fun -- reading what everyone wrote about the best thing they had the week before. Maybe let's keep this going?

This week was easy for me...the petite filet mignon at Fleming's at the Summit in B'ham (


Although I usually avoid chain restaurants, my husband and I dined here with another couple who had been wanting to try it, and we all really enjoyed it. The steak was *amazing* - perfectly cooked. It's not going to bump Doe's Eat Place off the top of my ladder of steak greatness, but it really was the best thing I had all week.

What was the best thing you had all week?

Mar 06, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Best Thing I Ate All Week, Feb 20-26 (maybe we can do this every week?)

I've been away from CH for a week or two but thought it might be fun if we started a thread each week -- maybe on Sundays -- just mentioning the best thing(s) eaten during the previous week. While many of us answer tourists' questions and such, this might be a nice piece of insight as to what we found ourselves to be remarkable.

I'll be happy to go first:
The best thing I had all last week was the Fudge Farms Pork Tenderloin at Veranda on Highland in B'ham


I'd *love* to hear from any & everyone else as to what you found to be spectacular...might want to check it out for myself! Thanks

Mar 02, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Birmingham - Tacos Su Primo

Ribs: gotta go to Roadside BBQ, 7303 1st Ave N which is Woodlawn, I guess. That's the only place in town that I really like for ribs.

Jan 27, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

In Search Of a Flavor Of The Past - Hot and Sour Soup In Birmingham

Jannae, I never had the h&s soup at the place in 5 Points that you remember, but Chen Express (it's in the same shopping center as the Crestline Pig & Zoe's) delivers to my home and I really-really-really like theirs. If you're ever in that neighborhood, you might want to consider it.

Chen Express
221 Country Club Park, Birmingham, AL 35213

Jan 19, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Annual Wild Game Supper, Tonight at The Club, B'ham

Anyone else going to what my funny husband calls the "Beast Feast"? Our babies will be with our babysitter and we'll be there for our 7:45p reservation. If any of you are also members and are attending, please look us up!

Jan 19, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

In Search Of a Flavor Of The Past - Hot and Sour Soup In Birmingham

I like Silver Coin too.

Taste of Thailand -- I used to have lunch there once a week when my office was in Hoover. At a certain point, their portion-size went down to the point that my lunch-mates sometimes left unsatisfied. I've never been there for supper so I have no idea if they are more generous in the evening. The Tom Kna, though, aaaaahhhhhh.....

Jan 19, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Warrior Alabama: Big Daddy's Barbecue Is Back

This is *just* Archibald's - and the only service you get is across a counter, directly in front of the pit. The address is:
1211 MLK Jr Blvd
Northport 35476

You'll see about three or four picnic tables set up by the road and an old blue GMC Jimmy (I think it's a Jimmy) is always parked there.


Jan 18, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Warrior Alabama: Big Daddy's Barbecue Is Back

Scrumptious, speak on it, brother! I love Archibald's too!!

Jan 18, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Alabaster Area

re: "I want Prairie Fire back!!!!!"

Me too.

Jan 18, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

In Search Of a Flavor Of The Past - Hot and Sour Soup In Birmingham

JS: which Surin -- the one in 5 Points? "My" Surin is the one in Crestline and while the music isn't loud (can't even remember music there) the wait often seems over the top. Or maybe that's because I'm there with my two small children...

Have you ever had the Tom Kha at Taste of Thailand on Lorna? I can never get enough of it. They should sell it in gallon to-go containers.

Jan 17, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Alabaster Area

@Al, maybe let's be a little more gentle with the tone. I understand Lizzieslulu talking about being relieved that she's not alone. I can't find it at the moment, but one of the larger threads on another forum like this happened to be entitled something like "Places Everyone Else Loves But I Don't Get It" or something like that. When you hear all over town that place "x" is great and you give place "x" a couple of shots, for me anyway, it's natural to wonder "what am I missing?".

@Lefty: I've never tried Amore. Is that in the same shopping center where a Cajun/crawfish-type-of-place is? I may have my shopping centers mixed up, sorry.

@Curej: yes, I'll take Bottega any day over GianMarco. Someone told me that another franchisee is looking to open Copeland's back up here in Bham (it'll obviously be in another location) but I liked it a lot too. Since you mentioned Prairie Fire Grill, have you been to Chuck's Fish? It's in that very same strip mall that PFG used to be in.

5510 Highway 280 Ste 116, Birmingham, AL 35242

Chuck's Fish
508 Greensboro Ave, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401

Jan 12, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Alabaster Area

Curej, Italian places in your area -- I guess my fave is Dolce Vita that you mentioned, but (besides the awful, vinegar-overload salad) Leonardo's can also be quite good. Do you agree? That's not exactly Alabaster-area though.

My vote for best Italian in the metro goes to Bottega.

I think the reviews in this thread, while obviously mixed, were fair to Joe's. You mentioned above that you'd also had some experiences there better than others. It is what it is. I cook some Italian dishes at home but when I go to an 'Italian' restaurant, I'm looking most people there...good 'Italian' food. I'd give Joe's another shot. Ah, everybody sometimes has an 'off' day.

Jan 10, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Alabaster Area

So funny! I had Joe's at lunch for the first time - went with a friend who *loves* the place and we both left disappointed.

I had the eggplant parm, which was different for me because the eggplant a.) wasn't fried and b.)still had its skin on which I've heard before is the mark of an unauthentic e/p. At a certain point, it's easy for eggplant to get a slimy texture in which case it did here, and that was not pleasant.

My friend had one of yesterday's specials which was chicken with penne and some sort of tomato cream sauce. Neither of us cared for that either.

We decided that dessert would make up for the entrees so I got a slice (if you can call that monster a slice!) of strawberry cake and she got the Oreo cake. My preference is that cakes have sweet icing on them and mine was mostly white and colored whipped cream. Let down.

Can't win 'em all.

Jan 07, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

B'ham fried chicken- Max's Deli of Seafood & Chicken Box?

@Curej: I *love* the chicken at SCB but gracious is it ever salty. I've also been to the 'best' Green Acres but it is always closed when I go by (the one between Tarrant City and Acipco, right? I know that is a far distance between the two but my husband always drives and for whatever reason I don't pay a lot of attention).

Ah, I hate to admit it - because it's a chain - but the best chicken fingers I've had are at J. Alexander's at the Galleria. Lawsy those are good! I've had the ones at The Baskits but J. Alexander's still gets my vote.

Was it last year when the Bham News did a 'best in the city' competition and the subject was best chicken fingers? The winner was the Dairy Queen out in Alabaster in that giant newish shopping center, because they still do theirs from scratch. We drove out there and they were quite fine but not my faves.

Have you ever noticed, though, that dairy bars almost always have great chicken fingers?

Jan 01, 2011
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

White Choc Bread Pudding @ Shelby Co Jail? And "Best" of Bham Winners in City Scene

My husband asked me this morning if I knew where Chef Arman DeLorenz was cooking now, and when I asked if he was back in Tuscaloosa or one of his old haunts here in B'ham, was directed to page 2B of the Bham News:

Restauranteur DeLorenz Arrested

...looks like he was picked up on Thursday, "charged with unlawful possession of a controlled substance, driving under the influence, and leaving the scene of an accident" as well as had a warrant against him for possession of a couple of drugs I've never heard of.

Oh, Chef DeLorenz, please get it figured out. You are *so* talented. SO talented.

I wonder if they'll be having his signature white chocolate bread pudding tonight in Columbiana.

Anyone see the "Best of" Birmingham in today's City Scene?

Best Local Boy Made Good went to Frank Stitt.

Best deli went to O'Carr's. If they list the runners-up in order of votes (which I think they must since they're not in alphabetical order) then Max's came in last. What a shame.

Best Restaurant: Highland's

Best Hot Dog: Chicago Mike's

Best Barbecue: Full Moon

Best Italian: Bottega

Best Mexican: Cantina (followed by La Paz, Rojo, Cocina Superior, Chuy's)

Best Meat & Three: Niki's West

Best Fried Green Tomatoes: Irondale Cafe. REALLY? Those are the worst I have had (and because I want them to be good, I've gotten them several times). Just can't get over that heavy tempura-like greasy breading they put around them.

Best Fried Chicken: Publix. Again, really?

Interesting - best new restaurant went to the Barking Kudu. That's the one place of all the choices I had not been to. I thought it was just a bar!? Someone explain if you've been there.

Not listing all the winners but thought these were interesting...

La Paz Restaurant
99 Euclid Ave, Birmingham, AL 35213

2921 Highland Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35205

The Barking Kudu
2929 7th Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35233

Cocina Superior
587 Brookwood Vlg, Birmingham, AL 35209

Dec 31, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Middle Eastern ingredients? Indian ingredients? Thai ingredients?

Hamiltonmh, I thought you would have gotten an answer by now. I used to spend a good amount of time in Mobile but I don't think I've ever gone to one of the ethnic markets (just mentioning Thai food in general, I like Bangkok on Airport Blvd). If you ask the restaurant proprietors, they will often give you a good idea of who they get things from too. Type into Google: mobile alabama ethnic market.

One that I didn't see in the Google list but have heard of is Food Pak Int'l on Old Shell Road.

I have a couple of friends from Mobile so if you need more help let me know and I'll ask them. Happy new year!

Dec 30, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Where to buy duck meat in Birmingham?

I get duck very often at Whole Foods. The only part of the duck I ever cook (because it can get so dry so very fast) is the breast portion. WF sells those - if I'm remembering correctly - $5 or $6/breast.

Dec 30, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Parlor Market six-course dinner - Jackson, MS

Oooh I'd love to try (but won't be there). Hate to have a criticism, but don't you find the addition of any flavor pop-rocks to a dish so...I don't know...2007?

Course three with the sweet potato bisque sounds divine.

Dec 29, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

MOE's BBQ-Birmingham

I've only been there once but had the barbecue nachos and they were pretty good... I don't think I realized until just now that it's a chain that started in Tuscaloosa.

hlsess, going to have to give them another try now. Getting hungry.

Dec 27, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Not to miss culinary experiences in Birmingham

Johnnystiletto: oh it's a must-do! The aspic is (Dax:) just regular tomato aspic, with a dollop of mayonnaise on the side, but how many places can you have lunch that offers *aspic*!?

It just makes my little Southern heart so happy. I order it every time.

At home I make aspic and serve it in little tea cups. It never fails to impress people from other parts of the country. They think they just stepped onto the set of GWTW.

BTW, Gilchrist also serves breakfast *cheap* but I've never tried it.

Curej: while I was out tonight, I thought of a couple of other "Birmingham" food experiences: a Milo's hamburger with the fries and sweet tea. Not something that will impress anyone, necessarily, but Milo's is the only place that does their hamburgers that way. And they're great.

Especially if your friends watch Top Chef, consider taking them to Flip (if anyone else here is a TC fan, Richard Blais has his own show on Science Channel now: ). Where else can you get a "Southern burger" which consists of "country fried beef, pimento cheese, b&b pickles, green tomato ketchup" (and it's wonderful)? They're doing fried b&b pickles, too. Oh...and those milkshakes...come on...

Dec 27, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Not to miss culinary experiences in Birmingham

Just cutting & pasting from your list:

1. BBQ: I don't think B'ham has crazy-great barbecue so I would drive the just-over 45 minute limit you gave and give your guests a *real* Alabama 'cue experience at Archibald's in Northport/Tuscaloosa. Choose whichever day of the week you can sit outside comfortably and eat on one of the picnic tables outside. That is an Alabama barbecue experience.

2. Breakfast: Makes me wish Crepes Eggs-Cetera was still around, however awful the name. Those latkes could not be beat. In any case, Demitri's in Homewood has a pretty good breakfast. Good luck getting a park in the morning. I will NOT go to Bogue's for lunch, but the breakfast is good... I still need to try "The Egg & I" and the new b'fast place that just opened at the Mountain Brook exit off 280. Starts with an O.

3. Thai: I like Taste of Thailand on Lorna.

4. Southern Fried Chicken: Max's.

5. Food "trip": I actually used to drive to Anniston to get Wright Dairy milk before V. Richard's carried it. Maybe make the trek to Archibald's your trip and you could show your guests the campus at Alabama (and a million other things - the Westervelt-Warner Museum, etc)? Get there in the morning and have breakfast at The Waysider - that is a great breakfast. Or...what about one of the vineyards, like Morgan Creek? But if they are wine snobs, maybe not.

6. One "nice" but not hoity toity meal: Gianmarco's doesn't really do it for me, I'd go Veranda or Bottega.

7. Lunch: Chez FonFon

8. Tex-Mex: I don't think this is a great option in B'ham.

11. Chinese: Mr. Chen's

12. Pub food: Just not sure.

13. Bakery: Continental for bready things, not sweets.

I've been to Boston. They have us beat on ethnic.

Some other thoughts:
Stick to our strengths.

Barbecue, already discussed. Plus, if you get to Miss Myra's there's white chicken sauce and that's something hard to find outside Alabama.

At Veranda you can give them a taste of New Orleans thanks to the staff imported from Commander's.

At Bright Star in Bessemer there's straight Greek and Southern. That is a beautiful thing. Introduce them to Jimmy or Nick and that can be a great conversational experience, especially if they're any kind of college football fan and you can very easily steer things toward a Bear Bryant (or many other football legends) story.

If you go to Fish Market (I know they're from Boston, but Fish Market really can be quite fine) they can try West Indies Salad which is native to Mobile. Shrimp & grits, too. Heck, alligator.

Take them for catfish at Fish Market or one of the other barbecue joints. Don't forget fried pickles!

If Boston hasn't been blessed with a Krispy-Kreme yet, you can't let them leave without a 'hot one'.

Gilchrist in Mountain Brook at lunch. Hello, aspic. Hello, you gorgeous egg and olive sandwich. Hello, pimento cheese.

Short field-trip to Peanut Depot on Morris Avenue!

Don't miss a trip across the line at Niki's on Finley. Getting yelled at "siiirrrr...maaaa'aaam..." is half the fun. As are the fried green tomatoes and those glorious collards and rutabagas. Hot banana pudding. Classic Alabama meat & three.

I can go on forever...

Bright Star Restaurant
304 19th St N, Bessemer, AL 35020

1512 Greensboro Ave, Tuscaloosa, AL 35401

Bogue's Restaurant
3028 Clairmont Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35205

Gianmarco's Restaurant
721 Broadway St, Birmingham, AL 35209

Southern Fried Chicken
1313 W Walnut St, Rogers, AR 72756

Egg & I Restaurant
4741 Chace Cir, Hoover, AL 35244

Dec 27, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Pre-1980 Hot Dog Joints In Birmingham Alabama

There used to be a frozen custard (& more) place in Tuscaloosa called " Papa's" - they made fantastic hotdogs using Vienna Beef.

Is there anybody in Birmingham that uses Vienna for their hotdogs?

Dec 20, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South

Pre-1980 Hot Dog Joints In Birmingham Alabama

Scrumptious, there are several places for whiting sandwiches around Elmwood and B'ham-Southern. Health ratings can be iffy though.

BTW, don't forget Lyric Hotdogs across from the Alabama.

Dec 19, 2010
deepfriedkudzu in Central South