Worth driving from anywhere!

At the oilcloth-covered tables in the two wood-paneled dining rooms of Martin’s sits a cross section of the Montgomery populace: men and women in full business attire, ladies lunching, tradesmen (in their clean clothes), and, on Sunday, an after-church crowd dressed to the nines. While in no ways formal or uppity, Martin’s is a polite place to eat. Comfortable, hospitable, and reasonably priced, it is an understated jewel of a restaurant, a neighborhood café that serves the finest in meat and three meals.

The last time I approached the front door, I exclaimed out loud how lucky I was that the white-board menu posted outside listed banana pudding as a dessert of the day. “Yes, sir,” offered a woman who was walking out. “It’s so good, I had two portions!” Seated next to me in the dining room that day was a well-dressed gent who, noting that I had ordered three desserts, confessed that he had eaten lunch a short while ago downtown, but craved good pie, so he drove out to Martin’s for a slice of coconut meringue. Martin’s food has been earning loyal customers for decades.

Meals start with either crisp-edged cornbread muffins or biscuits that are flaky-crusted with gossamer insides. Lunch anchors, which vary by the day, include succulent-crusted fried chicken and baked chicken that is every bit as luscious as the fried – so tender that the gentlest tug with the tines of a fork easily separates moist, velvety bites. There are catfish fillets, beef tips, fried flounder, and pork chops; and starting every day at 2pm, heftier dinner entrees that include the likes of meat loaf, whole catfish, fried chicken livers, fried oysters, and fried shrimp.

Side dishes are an honor roll of masterfully cooked southern vegetables: soft and savory cooked cabbage, pot-likker-sopped collard greens, butter beans, cheese grits, candied yams, bowls of shimmering red cherry Jell-O chockful of fruit cocktail.

When banana pudding is on the menu, it’s a must: at once dense and creamy, its ‘Nila Wafers softened just enough to maintain their cookiehood but also offer rugged contrast to the more viscous ingredients, the hunks of banana firm and fresh, the whole thing leavened by thick veins of whipped cream. Pies also are first rate, the coconut custard crowded with shreds of coconut and topped with frothy meringue, the chocolate cocoa-infused but not at all devilish.

I enjoyed lunch here so much when I last passed through Montgomery, I scheduled a return trip for Sunday, when the same great Dixie square meals are kicked up a notch with entrees that are like home cooking, but probably better: roast beef cut into rosy flaps that are as tender as beef can be; and sliced turkey that is aromatic and full-flavored.

What to Eat
Martin’s, Baked Chicken Dinner
Baked Chicken Dinner
So tender that a knife would seem brutal, baked chicken smells like grandma’s kitchen.
Martin’s, Banana Pudding
Banana Pudding
Banana pudding is veined with whipped cream.
Martin’s, Coconut Pie
Coconut Pie
Coconutty flavor and featherweight meringue earn coconut cream pie a blue ribbon.
Martin’s, Cucumber Salad
Cucumber Salad
Cucumber salad is slightly sweet, slightly pickly, a wee bit fruity (tomato) & totally refreshing.
Martin’s, Fried Green Tomatoes
Fried Green Tomatoes
Tart, pickly fried green tomatoes
Martin’s, Fried Chicken
Fried Chicken
Fried chicken's crisp gold crust envelops dripping-moist meat.
Martin’s, Chocolate Pie
Chocolate Pie
Intensely fudgy chocolate pie, crowned with gossamer meringue.
Martin’s, Macaroni & Cheese
Macaroni & Cheese
Mac 'n' cheese packs big cheese flavor.
Martin’s, Butter Beans
Butter Beans
Butter beans really do have buttery richness.
Martin’s, Collard Greens
Collard Greens
Collard greens are an exhilarating green-vegetable punch.
Martin’s, Corn Bread
Corn Bread
Oven-warm cornbread is moist and buttery with crunchy-crisp edges.
Martin’s, Okra, Corn & Tomatoes
Okra, Corn & Tomatoes
Okra, tomatoes, and corn could be the highlight of an all-vegetable plate.
Martin’s, Meat Loaf
Meat Loaf
Rib-sticking meat loaf, glazed with sweet tomato sauce.
Martin’s, Jell-O
Props to any eatery that still offers good ol' Jell-O
Directions and Hours
closed now
Sunday10:45 am - 2:45 pm
Monday11 am - 7:30 pm
Tuesday11 am - 7:30 pm
Wednesday11 am - 7:30 pm
Thursday11 am - 7:30 pm
Friday11 am - 7:30 pm
Open Year Round
Meals Served
Lunch, Dinner
Credit Cards Accepted
Alcohol Served
Outdoor Seating

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