Romie’s surprised us, a fine little lunch spot that would be successful pretty much anywhere. Featuring a meal and 3 at lunch and enormous sandwiches, this spot is a perfect stop on the way to Alabama from Memphis, TN.

That’s what we were doing recently, returning from a trip to Dallas by way of the Shreveport area. Rather than heading south through Meridian and Tuscaloosa, we went a little north, through Memphis and then down to Birmingham. After a stop in Memphis, we reached Tupelo around lunchtime. Asking the folks at the local gas station where to eat for lunch, Romie’s was recommended.

Romie's catfish po-boy, marinated cukes and tomatoes.

Romie’s catfish po-boy, marinated cukes and tomatoes.

Grilled chicken on wheatberry bread with fried green tomatoes.

Grilled chicken on wheatberry bread with fried green tomatoes.

img_6889

I’d say the lunch was a hit at our table. Yes, if we travel this route, we’d be happy to stop here again.

Romie’s Grocery
804 W Jackson Street
Tupelo, MS 38804
(662) 842-8986

Romie's Grocery on Urbanspoon

I ran into Mc Alisters the same day I visited the Waysider in Tuscaloosa. I was hungry, tired and the signs near Jackson MS were appealing. So we pulled off the road, took a look inside, and were generally impressed.

Deal is, you go inside and order. They have a large selection of sandwiches, some soups of the day, plenty of large filling salads. You pick up a number and sit.  As you wait, staff will refill drinks, make sure everything is okay. The spacing of tables is roomy. It’s a good place for, say, a mom weighed down with a few kids and needing some help getting them all calm and fed.

At the time I got the impression Mc Alisters was a small regional Mississippi chain. The food was good, not mind blowing, but good. There was a smart, interesting menu; things like gumbo and muffulettas were available, pointing out how close Mississippi was to New Orleans. Another sandwich, the Memphian, pointed out that Tennessee and Memphis was a neighbor as well. They served other southern favorites, such as iced tea. For those who didn’t like the stock sandwiches, they had a “build your own” option. I was thinking it’d be cool if they expanded into Atlanta.

Turns  out that Mc Alisters is much larger than my original guess. They’re in 22 states, and there is a location in Lawrenceville. One of the things I was planning to do before being snowed in  this January was find the Lawrenceville location, and try it out.

The menu, as currently posted in Georgia, is much reduced compared to the menu in Mississippi. I ordered a sandwich for myself and then a couple sandwiches for my family. I spoke with a member of the Lawrenceville staff (Tyler I believe) for a few minutes, asking the questions that were on my mind.

To note, the menu in Georgia is about to change. Things available in Mississippi can be had in Georgia. For now you have to ask for them. The one meat item they didn’t have is pastrami, and  that meant the New Yorker was off the menu here in Atlanta. But having the muffuletta available is huge for me. I’m a big fan of muffuletta sandwiches.

The Lawrenceville location is off Old Peachtree Road, and it’s just a minute or two north of Discover Mills. For those of us near Snellville, considering Mc Alisters when we make a jaunt up Sugarloaf towards 85 and Discover Mills simply makes sense.

Mc Alister’s Deli
1030 Old Peachtree Road
Lawrenceville, GA 30043
(678) 407-0818

Mc Alister's Deli on Urbanspoon

From the corner of Brown Road and Sugarloaf Parkway, next to Discover Mills, take Brown Road north. Mc Alister’s will then appear on your left, as you approach the intersection of Brown Road and Old Peachtree. It’s in the strip mall that has a Publix.

Mc Alister’s Deli
200 Riverwind Drive
Pearl, MS 39208
(601) 933-0476

Mc Alister's Deli on Urbanspoon

There are two other locations in the Atlanta area:

Mc Alister’s Deli
1425 Market Blvd
Roswell, GA 30076
(770) 594-3220

Mc Alister's Deli on Urbanspoon

Mc Alister’s Deli
2950 George Busbee Parkway
Kennesaw, GA 30144
(770) 499-1581

Mc Alister's Deli on Urbanspoon

This last location has an interesting review by John Bickford.

I’ve been finding interesting links and mailing them to myself. They’ve been accumulating in an email inbox, useless to anyone. But to dig down into these links and pull out a few of note.

This  is a quote from the New York Times article on adobo, the Filipino chicken dish.

As a result, there is great fun to be had in asking Filipinos how to make adobo, particularly when they are in groups. Filipino cooking is an evolutionary masterpiece, a cuisine that includes Chinese, Spanish, American and indigenous island influences, all rolled into one. But where for one Filipino the most important aspect of the dish is Spanish, for another it is Chinese, or both, or neither. (The journalist and food historian Raymond Sokolov has made the point that the ingredients for adobo were present in the Philippines before Magellan — only the name, which comes from a Spanish word for sauce, came later. “Lexical imperialism,” he called this process.)

Husbands argue with wives about adobo. Friends shoot each other dirty looks about the necessity of including coconut milk or soy sauce in the recipe. There are disputations over the kind of vinegar to use, over the use of sugar, over the inclusion of garlic and how much of it. Some use chicken exclusively in the dish, others pork, some a combination of the two.

Adobo is commonly seen in fiestas (parties) in the Marianas, and my wife is half Micronesian. Of course I’m interested.

More Filipino goodness is this blog article on the Filipino New Years. Great pictures! And Hopeless Foodie (Filipino step mother) has an article on making lumpia.

For those interested in sushi and thus the fate of the bluefin tuna, widespread reports of quota cheating (see herehere and here) certainly dim the prospects of seeing bluefin stocks recovering. Since one of the comments Tony Bourdain makes in his last book is a lament, on why can’t smart chefs incorporate interesting but less popular fish, such as mackerel, into their menus, we then find that people are cheating when it comes to the mackerel catch too. So life goes on.

To note, the Monterey Bay aquarium keeps a list of sustainable fish, foods safe to eat.

I don’t know how many of you have seen the fake food ads on Amazon.com (not for the squeamish). Samples are here and here.

From this article, Marilyn Monroe could cook. It appears as if this recipe was inherited from the DiMaggio  family.

Roger Ebert, the well known movie critic, has lost his jaw and can no longer eat. But he still entertains and still cooks. This is an article about Ebert’s new cook book.

Northern Mississippi Commenter doesn’t often talk about food, but when he does, I listen. In this case he’s talking about what he considers to be good BBQ (or not) in Mississippi.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 247 other followers