My favorite addition to biscuits and butter is Grandma’s Molasses. When I was a little girl my dad used to poke a hole in the middle of a hot biscuit and then pour in Grandma’s.
I’d say Hillbilly did his urban lunch buddies a favor by educating them about one of the most sublime tastes experiences on the planet – good sorghum syrup and fresh butter added to hot biscuits. I have this treat often, and have all my life. Sorghum is a passion with me, and I bake biscuits and cornbread mostly so I can spread sorghum on them. I’ve always combined sorghum with butter; that’s the way many highland Kentuckians grew up eating it.
My late best friend, 82 year old Jim A., ate sorghum every day of his life. Jim preferred sorghum over ice cream, cake, cookies or anything else sweet. We had to track down 7 gallons for him each year, and in some years that was a challenge. He called it "my supply". Jim was from the Kentucky mountains and knew his sorghum.
Hillbilly, I bet you know that sorghum and butter is mighty good on cornbread. I’ve found a buttered and toasted English muffin works as an emergency vessel for my favorite syrup.
In 2000, I bought 48 quarts of sorghum and shipped jars to friends in 7 states and 2 continents – Australia and South America.
Sorghum was always on the table growing up, and thank goodness, it still is.
Ah, Big Ed’s. What a great Roadfood place. During the 10 years I lived and worked in Raleigh, I got acquainted with Big Ed when he had the restaurant in the old farmers’ market, and continued to eat there at least twice a week. I split between there, "Captain Stanley’s" seafood on South Saunders, "Finch’s" on Peace Street, "Char Grill" and various Cameron Village restaurants (especially "Leo’s Delicatessan" and "Piccolo Italia").
I remember embarrassing my more urbane lunch (or breakfast) mates at Big Ed’s by mixing myself a plate full of molasses and butter to take full advantage of the biscuits. Raleigh really has some great food–including the "Angus Barn" and "42nd Street Oyster Bar".
I heartedly concur with this endorsement of Clark’s Bar-B-Q (at 1331 NC 66 South, Kernersville). Clark’s is a rarity these days, one of the few remaining barbeque establishments that cook with wood coals, as in "Hog over log, cooked slow and low". At Clark’s, pork shoulders cook for about 12 hours over hardwood coals. The que is served with a tomato based sauce similar to Lexington Dip. They also make the requisite barbeque slaw so popular in the region. Being a big fan of the original Stamey’s in nearby Greensboro, I tend to bypass Clark’s, but think I may try to visit more often. Easier said than done since I live in Kentucky. Clark’s serves lunch and dinner. Their phone numbers: 336-996-8989 & 996-8644.
Thanks,Hillbilly for the heads-up on "Susie’s" I’ve seen it but never stopped. I’ll get there on my way back west.
They have put up a life-size statue of Andy Griffith here in Raleigh. I plan to view it tommorow right after I have some of the best bisquits at Big Ed’s Diner downtown. I missed old Andy himself-he was here for the unveiling on Thursday.
My favorite in Kernersville is "Susie’s", at the highway 66 exit off old I-40. A Greek gentleman bought this place about 12 years back and added his special spice cooking to the long established menu of southern cooking and a fantastic "cheeseburger club". But his subtle use of spices makes for palate pleasing taste, especially the Sunday "Pot Roast" and sweet potatoes with cinnamon sticks. There are several very good restaurants within the first mile south of old I-40 on highway 66. I can never pass by Kernersville without stopping at "Susie’s" (they also have great breakfasts). It is a real dilemma because "Lexington Barbecue" is 1/2 hour away, and "Stamey’s Barbecue" in Greensboro is about 10 miles away. Choices, choices!!
I came through Mt. Airy today on my way to Raleigh. I love the Spappy too. If you find yourself a little south/east of there just outside of Winston-Salem in Kernersville on hwy66 there is a great litle restaurant serving BBQ and meat and 3. Real tasty tiny cafeteria line. And BBQ slaw too.The name is Clark’s Barbeque and is definitely worth a stop–not too far off of I40.
The Snappy Lunch is GREAT! Best bet is to plop yourself on one of 4 counter stools. While it is a bit crowded near the front with people leaving and waiting in line, always a line! It is fun to be in the center of the action.
We all know the pork chop sandwich is wonderful[:)]. Don’t even kow what else they have. With pork chops being cooked right in the front window that is all that comes to mind.
If you have the time visit Floyd’s Barber Shop next door. Don’t need a haircut, never mind, go in and look at thousands of photos of the famous and not so famous you have had their hair "done" by Mr. Hiatt. Great fun to get a cut and be put on the wall of fame. Now, wonder if I can find my picture the next time I waddle in after a Snappy Lunch treat!
In checking my files for an address for The Derby Restaurant in Mt. Airy, to share w/Roadfood folk, I found this reply to a note I wrote the Mt. Airy C of C praising The Derby and requesting its address and phone number:
The Derby Restaurant is located in the Bannertown area of Mount Airy on Business 52 (aka South Main Street).
1901 South Main St.
Mount Airy, NC 27030
I’m glad you had such a wonderful experience there and hope your repeat visit is the same.
Julie L. Smith, Tourism Coordinator
Greater Mount Airy Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 913/200 North Main St.
Mount Airy, NC 27030
336-786-6116 or 800-948-0949 (Ext. 3)
Since 2000, I’ve made 2 mad dashes to Mt. Airy, just to eat the legendary pork chop sandwich at Snappy Lunch–always on a Saturday at the end of July (I attend an annual week-long conference in the Valley of Virginia each summer which ends on a Saturday). Neither time did I make it into town before Snappy Lunch closed for the day. I was seriously disappointed the second time as the proprietor had closed at 1 PM (at 1:10 he was eating his own lunch in a locked and empty cafe). Nevertheless, I will try again, hoping to make it before Mr. Dowell retires.
Judging from numerous articles and first-hand accounts, the fried pork chop sandwich is indeed special. I hear about it, here, in Lexington, Kentucky, and it seems nearly everyone I know in North Carolina has made a pilgrimage. Several North Carolinians have mentioned Opray Winfrey’s visit to Snappy Lunch. Apparently, Ms. Winfrey was much impressed and ordered a second sandwich. North Carolina folk love to say, "Opray ate two!" It seems I’ve also read those very words somewhere. [:)]
Now, the upbeat part of this report: Finding Snappy Lunch closed I started south toward Winston-Salem and happened upon The Derby (just south of town). A cook was waiting for her ride home in the parking lot and I asked if the restaurant was still serving lunch. She said the restaurant was still serving dinner (lunch), and opined that I would get a good meal that day. She said she knew so, because she had cooked it herself. I thanked her and took her advice.
Well, I certainly did receive a delicious meal. It was a meat and three, with terrific hush puppies and world-class sweet tea. The meal was inexpensive and the portions generous. The cooking really was very good, especially the fried summer squash. Thankfully, I’ve been back (the second time I was late to Snappy Lunch), and again I had a terrific meal and wonderful service. This attractive little place has an authentic fifties look. I never see anything there to remind me of the last half of the 20th century, let alone this one. It would be unfair not to brag on the friendly and excellent service given by the The Derby waitresses.
I have had the pleasure of eating at the Snappy Lunch and let me tell you, it is quite possibly the best sandwich I have ever put into my mouth. That sandwich is loaded – it starts with a tender porkchop fried golden brown. Then they add chili, coleslaw, onions, tomatoes, and mustard. Sound like its a bit much? I had my doubts about loading it up all the way as they suggested, but I trusted them and boy am I glad. Those tastes just mesh so well together. Although I live 5 to 6 hours away in Georgia, I still drive up to Mount Airy at least once a year to gorge on Porkchop sandwiches. On a small sidenote, another great roadfood stop is also in Mount Airy, called "The Derby". Its a meat and three type of place, with the somewhat intriguing habit of serving you hushpuppies with everything. That area of North Carolina is worth visiting for the food alone, not to mention the nearby fun in the Smokies.
I am so envious! I have always wanted to go to the Snappy Lunch! Thank you for telling us about your trip.
We went to Mt. Airy Saturday for conclusion of Mayberry Days. We had We read about Snappy’s Lunch in a Roadfood book and stood in line a long time-but it was worth it! The sandwiches are very large,
the tea is very sweet, and the prices are very cheap. The pork chop sandwich was 3 bucks with lots of trimming.
If anyone out there is a big Mayberry fan you may want to check this out next year-2004 dates are Sept. 23-26. http://WWW.surryarts.org is the website.
The town also has some really nice craft and gift stores. I got lots of Christmas shopping completed.
There were cars there from many states-guess we are slow in learning about this local festival. Most of the "old stars" return for the Sat. parade I was told.
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