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Monday, September 28, 2009

Vittles And Birthdays....


One of the pleasures unique to the South, is the Southern cuisine.

You can order a Rib-Eye steak, baked potato and salad most anywhere in the country, but ask for a bowl of pinto beans and buttermilk cornbread in our Northern states and you'll more than likely, receive a bewildered look, or a blank stare.

Southerner's love to cook "downhome" dishes. Chicken-fried steaks, mashed potatoes smothered in gravy, fried apples, sweet corn, pinto beans, accompanied by flaky homemade buttermilk biscuits, and all the ice-cold sweet tea you can drink.
Did I mention it has to be sweet ?

I do believe I have eaten every dish considered to be of Southern origin, and loved every one of them.

Here in middle Tennessee, our town holds the bragging rights as the home and founder of one the best restaurants in the South. Cracker Barrel - Old Country Store, Inc.
Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc., is a chain of "Old Country Stores," each combining a retail store and a restaurant.

Company founder Dan Evins opened the first Cracker Barrel on Highway 109 in Lebanon in 1969. He wanted to create a business for travelers to stop for gasoline, a meal and some rest.

The Cracker Barrel chain serves traditional Southern comfort food. Their outlets have traditionally been located along interstate highways, though the company policy on this appears to be changing. Breakfast is served all day, though the breakfast menu is kept separate from the one for lunch and dinner.





The outer porch of a Cracker Barrel store has rows of rocking chairs for guests to enjoy before or after eating, and there is usually a fireplace and a checkers table within the dining area for an added country feel. The interior walls of the dining area are decorated with antiques such as photographs, advertisements, and household items.
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The retail store carries mainly nostalgic merchandise, collectibles, old time toys, classic candies, scented candles, and items used in making Cracker Barrel entrees. Also, a lot of merchandise sold at Cracker Barrel is holiday themed, depending on the time of year.


As of September 2009, the company, has 588 full-service locations located in 41 states in the United States, and was ranked as the top "family dining" chain for the 19th consecutive year in Restaurants Institutions magazine.
It is celebrating it's 40th year in business this year.
 

19 comments:

Milah said...

We love Cracker Barrel, especially the chicken and dumplings!

L. D. Burgus said...

Yes, Des Moines, Iowa has a Cracker Barrel. We rarely go there as it is in an opposite side that we usually shop. It has such a nice shop with nice things to purchase. You are making me hungry for fried apples.

Patti Cakes said...

BISCUITS AND GRAVY!!!!! My all time fav!

Betsy from Tennessee said...

We love Cracker Barrel, Jo... In fact, it is one of my father-in-law's favorite eating places. However, there is a Mom and Pop "Meat and Three" place in Hendersonville which is just as good and cheaper. We get a meat and three veggies and a roll or cornbread for about $6.95 there. It's in Hendersonville and its name is Two Country. Delicious!!!!

Hugs,
Betsy

HEATHER said...

Cracker Barrel is almost a favorite at my house!! Oh have you had the Coke cake? To die for!!

Sunny said...

There is a Cracker Barrel about 30 miles from our house. We've eaten there a couple of times when we've been in the area. It's the first time I ever had chicken fried steak. One thing for sure, you won't leave hungry!
Sunny :)

Gourmet Candles Distributor said...

We just love cracker barrel. Nothing like home cooking without the work. TN is a beautiful state.

Linda J. said...

Nice post. CB is our favorite restaurant in our little town in KY.

Gaston Studio said...

IMHO, Cracker Barrel USED to be a good place to eat but not over the past decade or two. Although, it's still a cool place to pick up an unusual souvenier or two.

I'm a southerner, so am all too familiar with southern (read fried) food; better known as comfort food.

RhondaL said...

We're transplanted southerners living now in Connecticut, a state that only has two Cracker Barrels.

Believe it or not, Cracker Barrel is our Thanksgiving dinner spot. They're open on The Big Day with a turkey dinner special.

I like it for T-day because we can get our traditional foods, yet only one serving of the high-calorie yummy stuff.

Or we can cheat and pick up another meal to go for later. :)

Carol @ TheWritersPorch said...

Hey Jo! Love that Hashbrown Casserole at Craker Barrel !! xoxo

Betsy said...

We have Cracker Barrels here in Ohio. I had some delish fried catfish there recently. :)

amillionmilesfromeverywhere said...

i LOVE cracker barrel!

DJan said...

I have eaten in Cracker Barrels when traveling, as it's a lot better than other chains. But I find everything to be too rich for my tastes so I don't go there often. I feel five pounds heavier after I've eaten there, even if I TRY not to eat too much.

Deborah Ann said...

LOVE Cracker Barrel! I always order Chicken & Dumplings, and then top it off with a nice fruit cobbler with extra ice cream. Yummm...Unfortunately, we don't have any around here (sniff) so we have to go down south to visit one. A few years ago one went up in Appleton (an hour from here) but they went out of business. I guess us Northerners just don't know good food unless it slaps 'em in the face! Well, except me, of course.

Pastor Sharon said...

Well, there is irony here! Cracker Barrel and I are 40 years old this year. I'll be there tomorrow. And guess where I wanted to eat lunch with a friend for my b-day? Yep. . . Cracker Barrel. I wanted that down home southern Cookin' that I didn't want to have to fix myself!

donna baker said...

Beside the fact their cream gravy tastes like it has bandaides in it, I love Cracker B. I make my family go there whenever I can. Where else can you shop while you're waiting to be seated. The pecan pancakes are great, the salads good too, I can't think of anything not good except the gravy. Ansd when will they ever bring back the bread pudding?

midwesttomidlands said...

I love CB! I worked there for over 10 years as a retail manager before moving to England. I wish I could get some CB food here, any of it sounds good right now. The best part of Cracker Barrel was the people, guests and employees. I've been to your neck of the woods many times. Thanks for the post!

parTea lady said...

My brothers and sister-in-law just visited from Canada and we all went to Cracker Barrel for breakfast. I love all the Southern staples - the biscuits with sawmill gravy, country ham, apple casserole, etc. They weren't keen on the grits or the sawmill gravy (they don't serve it up North).

It is my family's vacation treat to stop there for breakfast whenever we travel from GA to FL.