Dude’s Drive-In

Review by: Michael Stern

Pull up, study the menu written on the wall of the small restaurant (no seating inside), and toot your horn. A car hop will be at the driver’s side window ready to take your order.

The menu is a long one, including sandwiches of fish, barbecue, and chicken, dinners of fried shrimp and oysters, half-pound hamburger steaks, and fried chicken fingers. There is a long and intriguing list of hot dogs that range from plain ones with cheese and/or slaw to chili-slaw foot-longs, corn dogs, and hot-dogless hot dogs that consist of nothing but chili topping in a bun.

King of the menu is the Dude Burger. A nice-sized patty formed by hand from quality meat that is fatty enough to be luscious, it is a royal configuration of meat, lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise on a soft bun. American Cheese is optional. One Dude and an order of French fries, with a milk shake on the side, makes an outstanding drive-in meal. Meat-hungry eaters can get a double Dude, and those of meager appetite can get an ordinary hamburger (without all the garnishes on top) made from the same high-quality beef.

What To Eat

Big Dude

French Fries

Dixie Dog

Onion Rings


Dude’s Drive-In Recipes


What do you think of Dude’s Drive-In?

One Response to “Dude’s Drive-In”

Brad Cooper

June 12th, 2007

Most of us here are in agreement that American Roadfood is among the world’s finest cuisines, if that word is applicable in such a context. Each region is blessed with specialties and environments not found in other areas of the country, and Appalachia remains a prime example.

In the hills of northern Virginia, within sight of the US-11/US-460 exit, sits Dude’s Drive-In, a full-service traditional drive-in featuring a variety of sandwiches and plate dinners straight from the 50s and 60s when such establishments were far more common.

With the menu printed on a large board atop the building, service time is no doubt a priority. Within two minutes of parking, an attendant was at the window, pen and paper in hand, ready to answer questions and take our order. But even more suprising, and a pleasant surprise I might add, is the turnaround time. Within five minutes, the enormous burgers and orders of fries were bagged and handed to us.

The Double Dude burger, their largest (which weighs in at half a pound), is a sight to behold. Fresh beef, thick strips of bacon, and super-fast service that ensures you get it while it’s piping hot. I ordered mine as I order all of my burgers, with mayonnaise and ketchup in addition to the cheese and bacon; but with lettuce, tomato, and other traditional condiments, the Double Dude is a lot of food by itself. The fries arrived in similar style, fresh out of the fryer.

Presentation? It’s a drive-in. It’s Roadfood. This isn’t a trendy New York restaurant frequented by A-list society. Wrapped neatly and placed in a bag, telling the customer to judge the food on the merits of taste and nothing else… Dude’s is just the way it should be.

We drove 90+ miles from Southern West Virginia just to give Dude’s a try and it was well worth the trip, a trip that will be made again in the future.


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