Memorable | One of the Best
Martha Lou’s Kitchen
Review by: Michael Stern
*** THIS RESTAURANT IS PERMANENTLY CLOSED ***
Here is inexpensive, downhome food to remember, and two women to remember, too: Martha Lou Gadsden, who does the cooking, and her daughter Debra, who is the hostess. Friendly and gastronomically knowledgeable, they are ladies who add flavor to a meal beyond ingredients and spice.
Debra greets customers with hospitality offered by few formal maitre d’s. It is her pleasure to guide newcomers through a menu that includes fried chicken every day and such specials as fried fish, pork chops, ribs, and chitterlings. Sides are Lowcountry paragons: mac ‘n’ cheese, red rice and white rice, collard greens, lima beans, okra soup, and cornbread. After we place our order, Debra pauses and looks us in the eye, warning that the food will not come instantly. It will be made to order by her mother, who begins cooking when Debra brings an order back to the semi-open kitchen.
Subtlety is not Martha Lou’s culinary signature. Everything she cooks is boldfaced. Even ice tea is supersweet and superlemony. Macaroni and cheese is less comfort food than exciting food, the creamy cheese vibrant with pepper punch. Crust on fried chicken and fish is big-flavored salty; okra soup smacks you with a one-two punch of tomatoes and okra. Bread pudding, choc-a-block with fruit cocktail, is as sweet as candy.
Directions & Hours
|Credit Cards Accepted||No|