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Jan 17, 2008 07:26 PM

What are some Don't Miss Restaurants in and around Vicksburg, MS and Jackson MS

We are planning a trip to Vicksburg and Jackson and would appreciate some suggestions. We like to stay away from chains and like everything from "home cooking" to fine dining. What are some "don't miss" restaurants that serve regional food?

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  1. I must admit that I don't enjoy typical "Southern" food, but Julep's is a good place that could (if you were being generous) be described as Southern. The Mayflower, downtown, is old school Southern and pretty good. Nick's is probably the best "fine dining" restaurant in town, but I prefer Walker's Drive In, which is more casual and has more of a neighborhood place vibe. Everything is terrible at Tico's but the steak -- and it's the best in town. Shapley's is a more well-rounded steak house. Bravo's has inventive food and a fun (grown-up) bar scene. There are a couple of dinner-club type places -- Pavoni's (which I've been to several times and love) and Ro Chez (which I have not). Both are just north of Jackson in Ridgeland. There are a couple of decent Greek restaurants -- Bill's Greek Tavern and Keifer's. By the way, all these places are in Jackson -- not sure about the Vicksburg restaurant scene. Let me know if you need more info or if there is a particular type of place you're looking for.

    1. pkimble seemed to cover them all. I don't think anyone should miss the seafood specials at The Mayflower and Walker's is one of my all time favorite places. I also love Keifer's. A couple of places missing would be The Cherokee and Hal & Mal's! The Elite and Two Sister's are both great southern lunch places.

      1 Reply
      1. re: lgault

        This guy knows what he's talking about. Sorry, Ma'am. this gal knows what she's talking about. At Hal and Mal's, get some tamales and the red beans and rice. At the Elite and Two Sisters, get the vegetable plate with greens, green beans, macaroni and cheese, and sweet potatoes (which will be a badly disguised dessert) and some cornbread. Put some pepper vinegar on the vegetables. The fish at the Mayflower is fresh and well prepared. Go with straightforward preparations.
        In Vicksburg, eat tamales. The tamales in MS and AR near the River are so much better than what you have had elsewhere. And visit the battlefield. And drive across the River into LA to teh 1st exit to the only gas station I have ever been to that has wine tastings. And slots.

        Two Sisters Cafe
        373 SW Frontage Rd, Winona, MS 38967

      2. My new favorite restaurant in Jackson is Spice Avenue - a great little Indian restaurant/grocery on I-55 just North of Northside Drive. I realize is isn't exactly regional but the food is made with fresh ingredients and everything is delicious. For lunch you can get any of the meat entrees (I love the butter chicken) with rice and naan for $7.99.

        As for Southern food, I love Crechales for their red snapper in butter/wine sauce. It is on Highway 80 and open only for dinner. The catfish at Cock of the Walk (on the reservoir) is good as is their coleslaw.

        I had some great catfish and fried peach pie at Jake and Rip's in Grenada last week. I wish Jackson had a place like that.

        1. 3 Locations ago, (and two owners) Shapley's was very nice. On my last visit, I enjoyed the water. Everything esle was bottom shelf product with top shelf prices! Nick's is on a downward spiral. The Mayflower and Elite are excellent at what they do. I'm hearing great things about Walker's...haven't been personally in forever... Bravo's can be interesting as can Char...if they are "on". For Catfish, Cock of the Walk, Penn's, and Jerry's all have their following. As someone said, the Cherokee Inn, Hal & Mals, and Keifer's can be good (not great) at what they do. If you are guessing..'this guy is not overly impressed with the Jackson restaurant scene" You would be guessing right!!

          2 Replies
          1. re: Uncle Bob

            The Jackson restaurant scene is pretty sad. Everyone's been heading to P.F. Chang's (a chain in Ridgeland) for the first decent Chinese food in the area in ages.

            Char was sold and we wre rather nonplussed when one of the first things the new owners did was chop the iceberg wedge (my fave) in half.

            Spice Avenue, however, is an exception to the otherwise dreary Jackson food scene.

            1. re: JaneWinston

              There are plenty of great places to eat in Jackson. I don't really do the fine dining thing very much, but the places that are mid-range are very exceptional.

              There are a lot of Greek guys grilling fish at various places (Bill's, Vassillio's, Mayflower, etc.), and you can't go too wrong at any of 'em. Aj's and Monte's are a little richer, and also quite good.

              Rossini's for a nice Italian experience, and Fratesi's, whose waitstaff always seems kind of spaced out, but *always* nail everything perfectly does the rustic thing well...

              Cool Al's for burgers, Sal and Mookies has great pizza, a lot of new bbq places have sprung up, though the best ribs still come from gas stations...

              For Chinese, skip the P.F. Changs and instead go to Golden Dragon in Madison- Johnny Lee is still in business, but now he is in the kitchen cooking instead of serving as host. I've been eating at Golden Dragon since they were on State Street, and never knew he cooked! Anyway, skip the buffet (horrible) and go for the Steak and Shrimp Que for two- the best $23 that you can spend, and as always with Jonnie Lee- "you no like, you no pay"... If your tastes run to the more exotic, check out the stuff on the table tents instead of the regular menu- things like chicken feet don't really appeal to me, but maybe others might like...

              Want a good steak? Try Olga's on Flowwod Drive. I wish that they would do Russian Food more often (as far as I know, it is only available on Thursday night) but the steak there is some of the best I've ever had- lots and lots of butter though... I've heard that there is a place in Pearl that is also quite good, but I've never been.

              Several Cajun places (Fat Tuesday's, Good Times Deli, and Que Sera) cover the Red Beans thing pretty well- Good Times has really good po'boys too.

              I could go on and on and on, but my main point is that Jackson is actually pretty good for food- in fact I think that it is pretty under-rated in the grand scheme of things. We may not have the variety of some larger cities, but I'm almost never at a loss when thinking of someplace to go...

          2. As a native of Vicksburg, there really are not many good places to eat there. Goldies bbq if you like that. The casinos unfortunately have put a lot of restaurants our of business. Walnut Hills used to have great home cooking for lunch, it's in an old house with a roundtable service, kind of typical of the south.
            Now living in Jackson, I would agree that Walkers is one of the best places to eat. Derek Emerson ( chef) always has great fish specials and rivals food I've eaten anywhere in this country. We've never had a bad meal at Nicks, would definitely suggest that also. Broadstreet has great sandwiches and breakfast, closest thing we have to a new york deli. Keifers is awesome if you like Greek, Bravo, Julep, Char, are all good as well. Char has a good lunch that is very southern and affordable. The duck at night is to die for.
            For a town the size of Jackson , I think you will find there are lots of good choices.