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Mar 4, 2013 12:16 AM

In defense of Cracker Barrel

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  1. It's the only place I can find Diet Stewart's Orange Cream soda.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Dinsdale45

      I miss the Stewart's Grape Soda that they used to carry...loved having that poured over their ice cold frosty mugs!

    2. What's wrong with Cracker Barrel?

      I think they make a pretty mean hashbrown casserole (*I always ask them to hold the cheese).

      4 Replies
      1. re: ipsedixit

        "What's wrong with Cracker Barrel?"

        Guess it's OK if you crave canned / microwaved frozen food when traveling away from home.

        1. re: Clams047

          That sums it up pretty well...their food isn't horrible, but it's certainly nothing special.
          It does taste like canned/frozen food.
          There are worse places to eat though.

          1. re: The Professor

            I haven't eaten at Cracker Barrel in ages.I ate there last Thanksgivingbut should have gone to Marie Callander's instead.Didn't feel like paying an arm and a leg to eat at one of the hotels downtown in San Antonio.
            It was okay;but I think I would have been better off eating at Jim's a local chain.Or maybe even going to Golden Corral if they were open.I went to my brother's later for dinner which was much better.I can cook most of the same dishes plus i can cut out much of the hidden salt and sugar as well.
            I might try them again sometime.

            1. re: HollyDolly

              What do you recommend at Marie Callender's besides pie? I've only tried the pie.

      2. as an expat (and I know you can identify) -- it's near and dear for comfort food we just can't have in our adopted countries....

        ...somehow we manage to find ourselves in a Cracker Barrel at least once every visit.

        11 Replies
        1. re: sunshine842

          I have absolutely nothing negative to say about Cracker Barrel - and found a very serious article about the Cracker Barrel antiques and American history to be fascinating.

          But in my lifetime, I have only ever been in a Cracker Barrel 3 or 4 times. But at one of those visits when I was a child, I tried fried okra for the first time. Don't know if I'd think that their held up now - but at the time it was a culinary revelation.

          1. re: cresyd

            I've never been to Cracker Barrel, but fried okra is food of the gods.

            1. re: JonParker

              I will always be appreciative of Cracker Barrel's role of introducing me to fried okra. I have no idea if I'd still find their version good today - but for making that intro, I am greatful.

              1. re: JonParker

                Yes, Fried Okra is indeed food of the gods. One of my most favorite things to eat.

              2. re: cresyd

                I don't remember ever seeing fried okra at the location I have been to. Are the menus regional?

                1. re: melpy

                  Every one I've been to has fried okra listed with all the other available vegetables. I had some just this week with my usual vegetable plate - green beans, okra, hashbrown casserole, and fried apples. Mmmmmm...

                  Their fried apples are not the fried apples of my childhood though...they're more like apple pie filling really.

                  1. re: melpy

                    It's not on the website either, I think something else mentioned here is missing too. Must be regional.

                    1. re: julesrules

                      Unless their website is regional, I see it there, too.


                      Breaded Fried Okra - under vegetables n' sides

                      1. re: Leepa

                        Huh. You are correct. Not sure what I was thinking!

                        1. re: julesrules

                          I didn't see it the first time either. Maybe the next time you go, they'll have it.

                    2. re: melpy

                      I've eaten at danged near every C.B. in every state I've traveled through, and the menus were the same in every one. Fried okra was always on the menu. Maybe they just don't sell much?

                2. I already wanted to go to CB. Now I want to go more! Look at those porch rockers!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: julesrules

                    You can buy the rockers. We have two on our front porch.

                  2. Cracker Barrel is still sort of a novelty for me because they are scarce around these parts (Westchester County, NY)
                    Great retro candy selection , bacon, eggs...terrific, friendly service...You will find no " tude" here!
                    Dining at Cracker Barrel for me, is like dining in an alternate universe.
                    The merchandise changes often, with every holiday and seasonally. Mixed in with the kitsch one can find some interesting/fun stuff. I picked up a great witches hat for Halloween a couple of years ago and a nice costume for my nephew as well. As a matter of fact we stopped into the Fishkill store on our way home from upstate NY this past Sunday and found a Colonial era shirt for him that was needed for a school project. Need a cast iron muffin pan, this is your place. They could serve shit on a shingle... kids, even those with discerning palates would still love the place.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: chowdom

                      Lots of chains in the rest of the country are scarce in Westchester...luckily. Even the Nathan's by the Cross-County shopping center was knocked down (I only went there to play a 14-year old baseball game in the arcade, but the hot dog nuggets did it well sometimes).

                      And now, there's a Pepe's in Yonkers. What the heck?

                      Fact is, I'd rather have (I think) Cracker Barrel's ambience and service but IHOP's pancakes.

                      1. re: BuildingMyBento

                        Cracker Barrel pancakes are pretty darned good.

                        1. re: BuildingMyBento

                          I finally got to go to an IHOP about two years ago. My friend I went with and I so hated the food, we threaten each other in jest, "If you're not good, I'm gonna take you to IHOP."

                          It was that bad.

                          1. re: Jay F

                            IHOPs vary somewhat. we have a very good one not to far away. they have these great grain and nut pancakes, and i use the butter pecan syrup. they also make a nice chicken fajita omelet that i quite like. good patty melts, too.