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May 8, 2011 07:14 AM

Mississippi Loop- Natchez, Vicksburg, Jackson, Columbus, Starkville, Tupelo, Oxford, Tunica, Clarksdale, Greenville

I am going on a two week road trip through Mississippi to "discover my true South" and visit relatives I have talked to but never met before. We will be staying in hotels and just going to see and eat Mississippi. I understand I am not to miss the "meat and three" experience, tamales, bbq, and soul food. Lots has been posted about Jackson and SW MS, but what about NW and NE Mississippi?

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  1. When you reach Clarksdale from the N you will be on U. S. 61 which bypasses the city. Take a right just N of Clarksdale to downtown and you will be on N. State St. You will pass a big cotton gin on your right then you will see The Ranchero on your right. Abe's will be on your left just up the road. Past Abe's you will come to Sunflower which is just before the Sunflower River Bridge. Turn right and go N on Sunflower to the railroad tracks. Go back to your right just past the RR tracks and you will find Ground Zero and The Blues Museum. Madidi's is a few blocks to your N. Hick's is on N. State St. so go back S on Sunflower to N. State St. and go to the right cross the bridge and Hick's is on your right. President Clinton had lunch with Eugene before he left office but Hick's was in an old location back near the RR tracks. Ask for Eugene and ask him to show you his President Clinton photo's. He loves to show them.

    Stop at The Ranchero and get a cold drink. Charlie Conerly who was a famous QB for the NY Giants lived in Clarksdale and there are all kinds of old sports photo's there of Conerly and some of his old buddies. It's a fun place and the food is outstanding.

    The Blues Museum in Clarksdale opens at 9AM. Park at the Blues Museum in Clarksdale and visit there. You can walk several blocks N and be in the middle of downtown. Let your wife shop a bit then have lunch at Ground Zero around 11AM when they open. After lunch head back S on Sunflower by the river and stop at Hick's just to visit. Take a right on Highway 61 which is State St. Go across the river and Hick's is on the right in nice red brick building. Go in visit and get a cold drink. Talk to Eugene and look at his pictures when President Clinton visited. Then head N on State St. Stop at The Ranchero on the left for another cold drink and look at all the sports pictures there of Charlie Conerly and his friends.

    Then head N on State St. to Highway 278/6 E to Batesville/Oxford. It's about 60 miles to Oxford. You should be there around 3PM. When you get to Oxford you will come to a red light and Jackson Ave. going to the left. Go straight ahead and get off at the first Exit which is Coliseum Dr. Get off on right but turn back left and cross the highway. Take your first right by the Basketball Practice Facility. I can't ever remember that street's name. You will see the football stadium straight ahead. Go to dead end at All American Dr. turn right and go past N end of stadium. You will run into the Grove. Go to the left on University Ave. and you will go past the Grove on your right and run into the Circle. Go around the circle and you will see The Lyseum which is the oldest building on campus. The James Meredith riot started in the Circle. There's a monument of him behind the Lyseum. The street you came in on at The Grove is University Ave. Take it back E all the way to Lamar. Take a right on Lamar and go about 6 blocks and take a right on Old Taylor. Go about 3 blocks and you run dead into Faulkner's home. You can drive up the gravel road in front and park and go in and visit. Go back to Lamar and go N past University Ave. two blocks and park. You are now on The Square. The building on your left is Square Books which is very famous. John Grisham has a home in Oxford. You passed it on the right just before you got to town. It sits off to the right on a hill and it's easy to see. It's just before the car dealership before you get to the first red light. He's a frequent visitor to Oxford.

    Park and walk around the Square. City Grocery is two doors down W of Square Books. Neilson's to your right on the Square is a nice department store. If you walk past City Grocery on the left you will see Waltz Restaurant after you pass the Pizza joint. Going around the Square you will find Ajax which is a good country food joint. There are a couple of nice ladie's shops on that side of the Square. Downtown Grill is on N side of Square. They have a nice bar upstairs. There's a Rebel junk store around on the N side if you want to buy a Rebel souvenir to take home. Go N on Lamar and Lenora's is on the left. Have dinner at City Grocery. CG has a nice bar upstairs and you can sit outside if you like. Old Taylor Grocery is a great place also.

    City Grocery @ 152 Courthouse Square, Oxford, MS. 662 - 232 - 8080.
    Waltz On The Square @ 1110 Van Buren Ave., Oxford, MS. 662 - 236 - 2760.
    Lenora's Restaurant @ 301 C North Lamar Blvd., Oxford, MS 662 - 236 - 1144.
    Taylor Grocery and Restaurant @ Old Taylor Rd., Taylor, MS. 662 - 236 - 1716. *

    3 Replies
    1. re: Littleman

      You are fabulous!!!! This is wonderful!!!!

      1. re: Littleman

        Downtown Grill is closed now. I'll give my full report of AL and MS shortly.

        The Downtown Grill
        207 S Kimball Ave, Jackson, AL 36545

        1. re: Littleman

          Great reply. I once knew that area of MS, but even back then, you would have put me to shame.

          The OP has found a bounty of great info.



        2. If you have time stop by Greenwood, MS where you will find some outstanding casual local dining at Lusco's, Crystal Grill and Giardinia's. Giardinia's is in The Alluvian Hotel which is a 4 * hotel owned by Viking Range. The Crystal has good plate lunches, seafood and steaks. Giardinia's and Lusco's both have outstanding seafood and steaks. Lusco's is old style in a fairly rough neighborhood but safe with lots of history and famous names that have been there. Everyone dines in a booth with a curtain same as Giardinia's. Spend the night at The Alluvian and dine at Giardinia's or Lusco's for dinner.
          Alluvian Hotel @ 318 Howard Street, Greenwood, MS 662 - 451 - 1500.

          Crystal Grill @ 423 Carrollton Ave.,Greenwood, MS 662 - 453 - 6530.
          Giardinia's @ 314 Howard St., Greenwood, MS 662 - 455 - 4227.

          Lusco's @ 722 Carrollton Ave., Greenwood, MS 662 - 453 - 5365.
          Stop in Greenville, MS if you have time for dinner at Doe's Eat Place. Greenville, MS is W of Greenwood, MS on Highway 82. Doe's Eat Place is not to be missed. You enter the restaurant through the kitchen where you can watch the steaks being prepared. In the center of the main dining room there are stoves at which the fries are made and salads are prepared there as well. In most cases, one steak there easily feeds two.
          Doe's Eat Place @ 502 Nelson Street, Greenville, MS 662 - 334 - 3315.

          You can head S on Highway 49 to Yazoo City and take Highway 3 to Vicksburg, MS. If you are in Greenville, MS you can go S on Highway 61 to Vicksburg, MS.

          In Vicksburg you could tour the old antebellum homes and the Vicksburg National Military Park.
          Have lunch/dinner @ Rusty's River Front Grill @ 901 South Washington St., Vicksburg, MS 601 - 638 -2030.
          or @ Walnut Hills @ 1214 Adams Street, Vicksburg, MS 601 - 638 - 4910‎ for southern cooking.