Tag Archives: Onion Rings

A Weekday Lunch at Sprayberry’s BBQ in Newnan, Georgia

2 Feb

sb menu cover

Sprayberry’s is a longtime stalwart of Southern BBQ. They have been around since 1926, so staying power is one of their strong suits. Country music star Alan Jackson once waited tables at Sprayberry’s. There are 2 locations now (both in Newnan, GA). We hit the Jackson Street location several years back and enjoyed it. This time we were traveling from Atlanta back to Mobile, Alabama and our timing was just right. We arrived just before noon — beating the lunch rush.  

sb lg

We were promptly seated in the spacious dining room and handed large tan menus (see the 2 images above). I immediately noticed the Lewis Grizzard Special (details shown on photo above). The late Grizzard was a popular Southern humorist who is still something of a folk hero in these parts. I owned a couple of his comedy tapes and sometimes read his column in the Atlanta Journal Constitution. He was a funny man with a hearty appetite for Dixie-style chow, so this BBQ combo is a fitting tribute.

sb plate

I wasn’t feeling up to onion rings, so I ordered the Chopped Pork Sandwich with a side of Brunswick Stew and a Sweet Tea with Lemon. My sandwich came with fresh chopped slaw (lacking the usual heavy mayo), a few pickle slices, and a small cup of Sprayberry’s singular BBQ sauce. It’s kind of a thin, vinegar-based condiment — not too different than sauces you find in Eastern North Carolina. The sandwich was quite tasty — lean, smokey swine paired with crunchy grated cabbage and the peppery tang of the sauce.

sb stew

I consider myself a bit of a Brunswick Stew aficionado, so I braced myself to be disappointed when I first viewed Sprayberry’s mushy concoction (see above). Virginians and Georgians have long debated about which state bubbled up the very first Brunswick Stew. I am not here to argue that point at this time. I will say that I am more accustomed to a stew with more texture. Kernals of sweet yellow corn, visible strands of meat (most often chicken), tiny green butter beans, etc. Sprayberry’s Stew looks more like baby food, but I am pleased to report that it is suitably flavorful. I added just a sprinkle of salt and a tiny splash of Tabasco. You could drink this stuff through a straw. I elected to utilize the more traditional spoon.

Sprayberry’s has stood the test of time for a reason. The food is good. The pricing fair. The service swift. Convenient access from the interstate. All in all a positive Dixie Dining experience. So if you find yourself motoring between Auburn, Alabama and Atlanta, Georgia, please do give ’em a try. It’s right on the beaten path, but worthy of your time and palate even if it was not. Skip the fast food options and treat yourself to a taste of Georgia culinary history.

sb postcard

Sprayberry’s BBQ –

Hwy. 34 @ I-85, Newnan, GA (770) 253-5080

229 Jackson Street, Newnan, GA (770) 253-4421

www.sprayberrysbbq.com

For more reviews of Southern food, please visit our web site at www.DixieDining.com

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Michelbob’s BBQ Ribs in Naples, FL

25 Aug

“Best Ribs in America???” — What is with these people?

I don’t understand all the hyperbole that exists in the Naples dining scene. Why not just say “Our Ribs are Awesome?” Or maybe “The Best Ribs in Town?” Or perhaps “Florida’s Finest Ribs?” Best in America is an incredibly bold claim — and one that is virtually impossible to live up to.

Michelbob’s — Where catfish take a backseat to their baby back ribs

This tangle of homemade onion rings didn’t last long

We started off with a Onion Ring basket. The hand dipped rings were good if a little greasy. But hey, I guess they are supposed to be! The baby back ribs (said to be imported from Denmark) and the thinly sliced pork were no doubt enjoyable. The ribs were mega-tender and you could see the smoke rings on the edges of the sliced pork. The ribs were not as good as those we have gnawed in Memphis or the Texas Hill Country. I like a little char on the outside and maybe even a little crispiness. These babies were soft to the bite with just a hint of deep dark smokiness. But let’s not dwell on the negative. The meal was really good and the BBQ experience pretty decent when you compare it to the overall bleak BBQ scene that exists here in the Sunshine State. I’ll add that the best ribs I have had since arriving in Florida are served up by our old pal Perry’s BBQ right here on Siesta Key. Boy, we are lucky little devils, huh? Perry’s aren’t baby back ribs, but they are surely dee-lish, baby.   

The portions at Michelbob’s are generous – you won’t leave hungry

The sides at Michelbob’s — especially the cole slaw and baked beans — were indeed world class. In fact, the beans were tremendous … sweet and quite smoky. I loved them and could have easily devoured another helping or two. We are pretty picky about our cole slaw, but we found the slaw here to be cool and creamy. Good job, people. The Texas toast was a nice touch too, although it could have been taken to another level with a little smear of garlic butter. My meal even came with a baked potato and sour cream. That was the proverbial belly buster. No dessert was necessary — we left with full guts and smiles all around.

www.michelbobs.com — It’s pronounced “Mickle-Bob’s” in case you’re wondering