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Where should I eat along my moving route?

So, I am moving from Salt Lake City, UT to Gulfport, FL. Unfortunately this move will involve driving cross country. However, I figured I would try and make this trip something to look forward to, so I am hoping all of the great foodies on Chowhound will point me in the right direction. I have posted a link to my planned route below. What, in your opinion, are the best possible places to stop for food along that route? Main meals, desserts, snacks, etc. What should I eat at the establishment you are recommending? I like food....there's not much else I can say. So any recommendations you have that will cause me to want to move sooner are welcome!

Thanks in advance!!

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&s...

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  1. you should detour south to austin from dallas and then drive east, stopping to eat BBQ at any one of a half dozen places along the way. alternatively maybe a smaller detour to Strawn for CFS at Mary's. Really tough there's nothing else in Dallas imo that's particularly standout - you can stop at any one of a dozen places and get fairly good tex-mex or tacos.

    8 Replies
    1. re: luniz

      Luniz,

      Is CFS, Chicken Fried Steak?

      1. re: luniz

        Agreed. you can take 35 south and then take 95 in temple to Taylor where you could hit Louie Mueller, which would not add too much time, and be a more interesting drive as well. After that you'd take 290 into houston, where you're bound to find other great things to eat. One benefit to LMs is that they're open for dinner as well.

        Here's a possibility stopping you in Strawn for lunch and then hitting Louie Mueller for dinner. You could get to Houston by night time.

        http://maps.google.com/maps?f=d&s...

        Even better would be to get all the way down to Lockhart(Smitty's is my vote, but this will be argued till Jesus returns) and Luling, but that would require driving through Austin. You'd then get on I10 towards Houston.

        1. re: kindofabigdeal

          How long do you think that would add to my trip? I am up for detours if it is worth it. Length of detour = Quality of food. What should I eat at these places you have recommended? I want something to crave from now until then! I'm obsessive when it comes to food....plus I'm on a diet right now....all preparatory. ;)

          1. re: kkillian

            Smitty's is the holy place of Texas BBQ. There are a ton of articles and posts all over the internet if you want to read about the experience. I recommend ribs, brisket, sausage, and prime rib on Saturdays. This is the essence of what Texas BBQ is all about. It is worth driving well out of your way for, imo. Gonzales Market in Gonzales is between Austin and Houston, and is also good. Louis Muellers is good but I've never seen it elicit a spiritual response from anybody.

            CFS is indeed chicken fried steak, and the example at Mary's is possibly the best in the state. Certainly the best I've ever had.

            1. re: kkillian

              I agree with luniz. If you want to get something unique from Texas then hill country BBQ (mainly brisket and sausage) is a top contender.

              http://www.texasbbqtrail.com/ has a fairly complete list without being overwhelming. There are many more websites that are far more complete with reviews and such. You can also search on chow on the Texas board for more specifics of which is better (many many arguments).

              Keep in mind that BBQ places are usually lunch places and the smaller, popular places can run out of meat.

              1. re: kkillian

                two hours maybe. Absolutely worth it. I take day trips down there for barbecue from dallas. three hours each way.

                A bbq trip through the hill country is required of any food lover. Someone truly obsessive would probably try to make multiple stops. Personally, I'd send you from Franklin in Austin, to Smitty's in Lockhart to City Market in Luling. Of course, there's the option of trying to make the trip on a saturday and hitting up Snow's in Lexington.

                Stop listening to me and read this instead http://fcg-bbq.blogspot.com/

                1. re: kindofabigdeal

                  Wow, challenging my obsession already. ;) While I do consider myself a food junkie, I do ultimately have to make my way to Florida and am not at liberty to spend an entire day perusing the Texas vittles. However, so far it sounds like Smitty's is a definite stop on my schedule, and ribs, brisket, and sausage is what I must try there??

              2. re: kindofabigdeal

                Great minds think alike! I'm a huge fan of Black's... still my fave brisket. That being said, Louie Mueller's is worth a route change. I hit them twice and Black's only once on my two trips along a similar route.

            2. Personally, I would have told you to go through N. louisiana into Mississippi for some killer fried chicken in Lorman!

              5 Replies
              1. re: battman1_2000

                I am not going to lie, I do love fried chicken, especially southern fried chicken. However, I think I like gumbo more....soooo.....If you have suggestions for southern fried chicken that isn't too far off my route then send them my way. It already looks like I am slated to gain 25 lbs and have at least one coronary. Let's see if we can't up the stakes!

                1. re: kkillian

                  Fine.....Old Country Store...Lorman MS...Google it...I drove from Ft Worth to that place last summer JUST for the chicken!! I'd do it again. Then you can head down to the coast. I take your route into Florida about once a year. Love me a great roadtrip!!

                  1. re: battman1_2000

                    Uggh, I despise road trips. Consequences of being a military brat I suppose. Now food trips are a blast though! I appreciate the chicken recommendation! Read some reviews, and it sounds fantastic. I don't suppose you or anyone else has recommendations that aren't necessarily in one of the major cities?

                    1. re: kkillian

                      If you're coming down I35 into Ft Worth, check this board for Posts on Roanoke TX. Its a litttle town just outside FW and has some great food joints

                      1. re: battman1_2000

                        Agreed. 35 southbound out of Denton will take you within minutes of Roanoke where you'll find Babe's Chicken Dinner House - a must stop for a true fried chicken lover. You'll probably need a nap afterwards. Each order consists of salad with their unique dressing, half a fried chicken (cut up of course) with creamed corn, mashed potatoes and gravy on the side, biscuits with honey and or molasses to finish. Don't be tempted by the CFS here.... stick with the chicken. They have multiple Dallas area locs, but Roanoke is the original and probably the closest to your route.

              2. If you stick to your current route and happen to pass through Marshall, TX (between Longview, TX and Shreveport, LA) around lunch time, you need to take a three mile detour off the interstate at eat at the P&J Lunchroom.

                506 E Travis St
                Marshall, TX 75671
                (903) 927-2553

                It's a small, five table family run soul food place. There's about a fifty percent chance I'll be eating lunch there on any given day. Your choice of three main courses and about five or six vegetables each day. Fried Chicken and catfish on Fridays. The fried chicken is so good, I'd plan my departure such that I'd pass through Marshall Friday at noon. You can't beat it with at stick.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Mike C. Miller

                  Mike,

                  That sounds great. Now I have another Texan who has told me that I need to try "old country store" in Pattison, MS for the best fried chicken. The unfortunate thing is that it adds an hour to my trip, however it may be an hour well worth it for the best fried chicken around. Is P&J Lunchroom good enough that I could skip Old Country and not be disappointed I did? I would much rather take a 3 mile detour than a 1 hour detour. Are there any other folks on here that have an opinion?

                  1. re: kkillian

                    I can only say this: My grandmother, rest her soul, was the best natural cook I ever knew. Their fried chicken is almost as good as hers and the best I've ever had other than hers.

                    But I've never heard of a man overdosing on good fried chicken. Is the one hour detour each way or total? If it's only 30 minutes each way, I'd eat at both.

                2. There is a substantial Lao population in Amarillo. If you get off the interstate and cruise down the old Rt. 66 on the fringe of downtown, there are a bunch of Laotian places. Better than anything else you will find in Amarillo.

                  On a similar note, when you get to New Orleans do not miss the excellent Vietnamese food there -- here are some to consider: Dong Phuong Oriental Bakery 14207 Chef Menteur Highway, (504) 254-0214, Pho Tau Bay 113 Westbank Expressway, Gretna, La., (504) 368-9846, and Tan Dinh 1705 Lafayette Street, Gretna, La., (504) 361-8008.

                  Of the Texas BBQ joints discussed at length above, for what it's worth, I prefer City Market in Luling and Smitty's in Lockhart.

                  Happy trails.

                  -----
                  Phuong Restaurant
                  4045 E Belknap St, Haltom City, TX 76111