Road Trip to Georgia Part Two: What We Ate
When recounting the details of a really good road trip, there most definitely needs to be a post just about the food. This becomes especially true about when it's a road trip down South. Let me just tell you, we ate really good on this trip. Coastal Georgia is all about the seafood and shrimp is king. That was just fine by me and it gets even better because there was also plenty of my favorite good ol' fashioned Southern cooking. I do love to eat on a road trip!
Our first food stop was lunch in Goldsboro, NC at Wilber's Barbecue. We'd heard lots of stories of North Carolina bbq and, since bbq is one of our favorite foods, we knew we had to stop somewhere on our way down the East Coast. Using the Roadfood book, we found Wilber's as a somewhat convenient detour from I-95. Wilber's is the typical local joint where everyone knows each other, the booths are sticky and the food is good and filling. Nick ordered the pork platter, which came with some interesting looking potato salad and some cole slaw. When I say interesting looking, it was nothing like any potato salad we have up North. He loved the pork and the free basket of hush puppies. You never get hush puppies north of the Mason-Dixon line. I had the chicken and it was drenched in the vinegary sauce NC bbq is known for. Yum! I also got vegetables with it and tried field peas, which I'm pretty sure is just another name for black-eyed peas, and they were strangely addictive. Though it was nothing fancy, it was good, down home Southern cooking and a great first stop.
Once we got to Georgia, my goal was to eat as much shrimp as I could get my hands on. There is nothing better than seafood on the coast where you know it's fresh caught and they certainly know how to cook it. The first dinner on Tybee Island had to be The Crab Shack, who's infamous tag line is "Where the Elite Eat in Their Bare Feet." This is an entertainment restaurant, the likes of which will never be replicated by a chain restaurant though they may try. It's right on the water with funky and fun decor and they have an alligator enclosure as soon as you walk up. Did I mention the cats that hang out with you while you eat?
For the first time ever, Nick had low country boil. It's shrimp, sausage, red potatoes, and smoked sausage all cooked and seasoned to perfection and absolutely delicious. He loved it and I loved my 1/2 pound of peel and eat shrimp. With a cold beer and the setting sun, it was so relaxing I felt like I had been on vacation a week already.
A trip to Savannah would not be complete without heading over to Paula Deen's restaurant, Lady and Sons. Since Paula is the queen of Savannah, you have to pay a visit to her palace! Though there are plenty of delicious dishes to choose from, the best meal for a first timer is the Southern Buffet. It's stocked with good Southern staples like fried chicken, black-eyed peas, collard greens and comes with one of the Paula's decadent dessert creations. We had so much fun; the service was great and we loved eating as much as we could. Thank goodness we only eat like this on vacation!
My favorite place in the whole world for fresh shrimp has got to be the Rah Bar on Jekyll Island. I could just inhale those big, fat shrimp! Located at the end of the pier with a view of the intercoastal waterway, Brunswick, and, on a good day, an amazing sunset, it's basically a dive bar with great steamed seafood. We ordered a pound of shrimp but really could have eaten at least another. I miss the Rah Bar so much!
Our final meal in Savannah was at The Back in the Day Bakery. On our first day there I saw a cookbook with the same name and when I read the forward saw that the bakery was located right here in Savannah. And who could resist a bakery with such a cute name? It's an even cuter bakery with little vintage touches and fun paper bunting. It was pretty crowded with tour groups strolling through but we grabbed the most delectable goodies and hot chocolate. I had the blackberry pie bar and it was so sweet and buttery and filling which was a good thing or I would have eaten the whole tray of them. Nick got a cinnamon biscones and I had to have a bite of it. It was soft with just the right hint of cinnamon. I was super sad that Savannah is not right around the corner but I bought a cookbook so I could try my hand at the recipes!
Our final food stop on the road was Moseberth's Chicken in Chesapeake, VA. We were stopping there that night and thankfully I had caught one of the millions of episodes of Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives airing on the Food Network. It was pretty much the best part of a long day on the road. The fried coating wasn't too greasy and melted right in your mouth and the chicken was perfectly juicy. It came with spongy hush puppies and we got loaded baked beans and collard greens on the side. It was the best way to say goodbye to a whole week of fatty Southern favorites.
Oh boy did we eat good this trip. I may be from Jersey but I love my Southern cooking. I'm also glad that summer's here so I can hopefully get some fresh seafood this far North.
There you have it, our whole big road trip down to Georgia. It was tons of fun and I really wish we had more than a week down there. But on to the next adventure, whatever that may be!