Your Guide to Authentic Regional Eats
Sign In | Register for Free!
Restaurants Recipes Forums Eating Tours Merchandise FAQ Maps Insider
Posted by Michael Stern on Monday, March 2, 2015 5:53 AM

James Freeman, whose grandfather started the family barbecue as a natural extension of his work as a pig farmer, says that whole-hog cookery simply cannot be formularized. Long ago, he scoffed when his father first told him that the only way to check meat for doneness is to sniff at it while it cooks. But now he is a believer and says that smelling is the only way. He uses no thermometer and he doesn't poke to check resiliency. He inhales; and because he has been barbecuing long enough, his nose tells him exactly when it is done just right. Still, it is a tricky business, he says, because the cooking time changes according to the phases of the moon. Just as the moon effects tides, so it influences the moisture content of the hogs that are cooked low and slow over smoldering hardwood coals.

We're eaters, not cooks, so let us say that however the barbecue gets done, it is done extraordinarily well at this friendly roadside shack. The chopped meat is a variegated festival of creamy-sweet shreds and nuggets and long strips of smoke-haloed pork that need only the slightest application of house-made sauce to attain simple perfection. That's the way it is served – lightly sauced – and there is more of the pungent potion available in bottles. Mr. Freeman told us that his wife uses it in nearly everything she cooks, from meat to vegetables. Indeed, I found myself applying drops of it to white bread just to savor it. Heat-seeking diners can ask for extra-hot sauce, which is so ferocious that it is kept in back unless specifically requested. "When I was young, I used to put the hot on my sandwiches," Mr. Freeman tells us. "I can't eat it now. I am not the man I used to be." But he does say that he has Mexican and Indian customers who pour it on with glee.

The pork is available in a sandwich or on a platter. I definitely recommend the latter, mostly because it is such a joy to fork through the beautiful meat, but also because platters come with side dishes, which are excellent. Hash on rice is notable for the fresh, luxurious nature of the hash, made with both beef and pork. Mac 'n' cheese is a comfort-food classic.

Dessert is the one menu item that Mr. Freeman does not make himself. The lovely lemon pound cake that is sold by the slice comes from a local woman named Tricia. It is good cake, especially welcome as a tender final note after a meal of such kaleidoscopic flavors.

Note: Freeman's is open only Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, for lunch and early supper.
Rate this place Read more about Freeman's Bar-B-Q...
Posted on Monday, March 2, 2015

Strange Brew

A Texan might accuse the Woodyard pitmaster of making an end run around the Lone Star bean prohibition, but we think the combination of mild bean chili and burnt ends atop it is inspired. This is not always on the menu, but if it is when you visit, I highly recommend it.
Rate this place Reviews (2) Learn more about Woodyard Bar-B-Que...
Posted on Sunday, March 1, 2015
Item Results
Hearty Soup 420
Chili Con Carne 121
Casserole 59
Cocoa or Hot Chocolate 46
Meat Loaf 38
Macaroni & Cheese 34
Hot Sandwich 16
Ice Cream 12
Comments (0)
Posted on Sunday, March 1, 2015

Big Smokie Joe

A close view of the jumbo Smokie Joe sandwich, a combination of beef and pork. While the plain pulled pork is great sauceless, in this sandwich meat and sauce are inextricable.
Rate this place Reviews (6) Learn more about Joe's Kansas City Bar-B-Que...
Posted by Al & Janet Bowen on Saturday, February 28, 2015 7:51 AM

Travelers on I-44 crossing Missouri can find a great place to enjoy some fine bakery goods just off Exit 184 in Rolla, a busy university town in the middle of the state. A Slice of Pie is located in a small business block close to that exit. It specializes in wonderful fruit and cream pies, cakes and cheesecakes, as well as specialty sandwiches and quiches served for lunch and supper.

The pies are sold whole or by the half or by the slice. They also offer combination "sampler" plates of four and eight slices to allow folks to taste a wide variety of flavors. They request that sampler plates be ordered in advance to insure that all the flavors will be available.

We purchased a whole cherry-raspberry pie to bring home and then individual slices of lemon and chocolate for immediate tasting in the truck. The flavors were intense, the crust flaky and delicious and the slices themselves were large enough to fill a hungry pie-eater. Slices run about $5, but are well worth the money as they fill the take-out containers to overflowing .

The ladies working the bakery will reserve a special flavor for you, if you call ahead when coming to pick up a pie or cake. Otherwise it is first come-first served and some of the more popular flavors sell out early in the day.

A Slice of Pie also prepares sandwiches and soups for lunches, both eat-in and take-out. They looked very good, but we were too busy enjoying our pie to think about other food during this visit!
Rate this place Read more about A Slice of Pie...
Roadfood of the Day: Eden Alley - Kansas City, MO
Posted on Saturday, February 28, 2015

Ultimate Garlic

The anticipation of four kinds of broiled-bubbly cheese are what made me order this magnificent sandwich, but it was the garlic and the sturdy bread supporting them that won my heart.
Rate this place Reviews (1) Learn more about Eden Alley...
Posted by Michael Stern on Friday, February 27, 2015 5:38 AM

Opened by Louis and Rebecca Shapiro in 1905 as a small grocery store, Shapiro’s became a restaurant in the 1930s. Today it is a full-service kosher-style deli where you can buy smoked fish and cold cuts by the pound; and it is also a huge cafeteria serving three meals a day. In our experience, Indianapolis is not a big breakfast city, so Shapiro’s is especially well worth knowing about in the morning.

The menu ranges from biscuits and gravy (not typical of Jewish delis!) to bagels and lox. We love the corned beef hash and also the corned beef omelet, which is loaded with meat and served with good home fried potatoes. One morning we asked the server in the cafeteria line about an item listed on the menu board as a matzoh omelet. She shrugged and offered her opinion that she couldn’t imagine that some crumbled crackers could be any good in eggs. But we tried it anyway and found it to be a kind of mid-American gloss on matzoh brei, the traditional Jewish breakfast dish in which bite-size scraps of matzoh are sheathed in scrambled egg like a kind of jumbled French toast but with a distinctive unleavened munchyness.

Shapiro’s is best known, and rightly so, for its corned beef sandwich. The vivid red spiced meat is steamy hot, sliced thin and piled high between slices of excellent rye bread. With a couple of latkes (potato pancakes) on the side, you’ve got a great lunch. Other good sandwiches include melting-soft beef brisket, garlicky salami, and chopped liver. Among the hot dishes is matzoh ball soup masterfully made with extra-strength chicken broth guaranteed to cure anything that ails you.

There is a second location on Rangeline Road in Carmel.
Rate this place Read more about Shapiro's Deli Cafeteria...
Roadfood of the Day: Chicken Annie's - Pittsburg, KS
Posted on Friday, February 27, 2015

Chicken in Your Face

A close view shows just how much chewy-crunchy skin comes on each piece. This thigh arrived at the table just seconds before the picture was taken. Note the glistening oil.
Rate this place Reviews (4) Learn more about Chicken Annie's...
Posted by Michael Stern on Thursday, February 26, 2015 4:54 AM

It is a known fact that South Carolina cooks are masters of fried seafood; Bush’s is evidence that the talent is not just a coastal trait. At the western side of the state, practically in Georgia, a humble fish & chips shack called Bush’s flies the frying beacon high. Here you can savor firm, sweet shrimp (jumbos or Calabash minis), creamy slabs of flounder, lasciviously large oysters, tender scallops, soulful catfish, and a wide variety of other flatfish such as whiting, croaker, mullet, and bream, all encased in a thin, crisp, vividly seasoned coat that is positively addicting.

If you are allergic to fried food, there is an all-you-can-eat crab legs deal in the $20 range – about twice the price of most meals. And if you are a fish frowner, try the pork chops. They are boneless and they are haloed by that fine, fragile crust that gives the seafood its flavor glow. People who visit in a more adventurous mood can opt for such non-mainstream menu items as catfish stew or chitlins (by the pint). The menu even offers Buffalo wings and a half-pound hamburger described as “incredible”; but I can’t imagine coming here and not getting fried seafood.

Whatever is at the center of the plate, side dishes are essential. These range from uniquely South Carolinian hash and rice to all-American mac ‘n’ cheese. I am especially enamored of the collard greens, which have all the tonic punch one expects, but with a completely unexpected sweetness that makes them into a whole other kind of very happy vegetable.

Dining is in a single, fairly small room where tables are set up in rows reminiscent of a commissary. This makes for an agreeably sociable tone; and while I am a stranger in these parts, the staff and other customers soon had me feeling like a regular. I can’t wait to return.
Rate this place Read more about Bush's...
Roadfood of the Day: Capriotti's - Wilmington, DE
Posted on Thursday, February 26, 2015

Bobbie Cross-Section

A Bobbie is a compact tube of pure eating joy.
Rate this place Reviews (1) Learn more about Capriotti's...
« Older Posts

Find Authentic Regional Eats

Over 1,500 incredible local eateries from around the country

Starting Points

Roadfood Poll

The Best Way to Make Coffee

Latest Forum Conversations

7 Minutes Ago
Why put BEER in chili? Quick Jump
59 Minutes Ago
Trip Reports
February Fun in the Florida Sun Quick Jump
11 Hours Ago
Whole belly clams Quick Jump
11 Hours Ago
What Do Vegans Eat For Breakfast? Quick Jump
13 Hours Ago
Trip Reports
End of Decade Celebration-The Best of 2014 Quick Jump
17 Hours Ago
Where Should I Eat?
Seafood - Tampa/St.Pete/Bradenton/Sarasota Quick Jump

Latest Digest Posts

Dagwood's Partner Debuts at the Sycamore Drive-In Wednesday, February 11, 2015 12:22 PM
12 Dishes to Remember from 2014 Wednesday, December 24, 2014 5:56 AM
Illinois Valley Fried Chicken Wednesday, December 10, 2014 7:20 AM
Zuppardi's Way Monday, December 8, 2014 5:25 AM
Bon Ton Mini Mart --> Colonel's Mini Mart Tuesday, October 28, 2014 5:51 AM
Pork, 3 Ways, Plus Sunday, October 26, 2014 6:12 AM

What is Roadfood?  |   Submit Content  |   Privacy Policy  |   Contact   Copyright -