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ultraclyde GRM+ Memberand Dork
5/7/13 10:59 a.m.

Okay, this idea started while reading the thread about Diners, Drive-In, and Dives. We all seem to love good, hole-in-the wall eateries and bars, so let's start a thread to list them. That way, when we're traveling we have a good reference for local joints

Da Rules: Start the post with the location - at least the state if you are listing several - in a line by itself. Skip a few lines and list each restaurant name, address if you know it, and then a short description.

Please, stick to places you've actually eaten, and stick to independent, non-chain places. Viva La small business!

I'll go first.

ultraclyde GRM+ Memberand Dork
5/7/13 11:02 a.m.

GEORGIA, Macon area

NuWay Weiners - Cotton Avenue, downtown macon. Started in the 20's, it's the hometown king for bright red hotdogs covered in chili and onions. If you have sensitive digestion, avoid it, otherwise you have to go there.

H&H Family Restaurant - Cotton Avenue, Downtown Macon neat Medical Center Hospital. - A soul food/home cooking meat n 3 that was frequented by the Allman Brothers and is somewhat of a shrine. Best fried chicken in town, and that's saying something.

mndsm PowerDork
5/7/13 11:02 a.m.

Big Daddy's BBQ- St. Paul MN- corner of university and dale.

Best frickin BBQ I've ever had. They only do a few things, and they do them VERY well.

JohnInKansas Dork
5/7/13 11:08 a.m.

The Dairy Barn - Wathena, KS - 36Hwy and St. Joseph Street.

Small building, huge menu. Burgers, franks, sandwiches, novelty this-and-thats, ice cream, slushes, fries, rings, deep-fried peppers, etc etc etc.

Woody GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/7/13 11:11 a.m.

Not sure if it's still there, but I used to love Skyway Jack's, under Florida's Sunshine Skyway Bridge.

1988RedT2 UberDork
5/7/13 11:12 a.m.

Roanoke, VA

The Texas Tavern. No late night-on-the-town is complete without a stop at the Texas Tavern in Roanoke. Been a while since I was there, and my memory may be a bit clouded by alcohol and the passage of time, but it's a local institution.

Check out the website and study up on the lingo so you can sound like a regular when you order!


93EXCivic MegaDork
5/7/13 11:12 a.m.


Little Diner- 1219 Jordan Lane Huntsville Al. Good burgers and two meat three veg plates and cheap

Gibson's BBQ- Memorial Parkway Huntsville AL. Damn good BBQ and pie.


Wildfire BBQ- Franklin KY also really good BBQ.

Harper's Catfish- Old Galletin Rd Scottsville KY. Best catfish I have ever had by a wide margin

mtn UltimaDork
5/7/13 11:16 a.m.

Bloomington, Illinois area:
Green Gables in Hudson, IL. Part bar, part grocery store, the burgers are a greasy pile of awesome. Everything else is better than bar food, but not worth mentioning.

Lasalle/Peru, Illinois area:
Rip's Tavern in Ladd, IL. Best fried chicken. EVAR. Yes, it is better than anything and everything south of the Mason Dixon. They serve you free crispies, which is just little fried bits of fried yumminess. It is as greasy and awesome as it sounds. I think that they have 3 appetizers (plus the crispies) and 3-5 "entree's" on the menu depending on the day. Few things on the menu, nothing to mess up.

St. Louis area:
Cunetto's on the Hill. The best Italian I've ever had.

Northern Chicago:
Gale Street Inn on Milwaukee Ave (about a block away from Gale Street). The ribs are to die for. This is not a typical BBQ smoked rib, it is somewhat of a Chicago style BBQ rib. Not better than a typical BBQ rib, but as good. This one is kinda fancy. They also have one of my favorite beers, Metropolitan Krankshaft Kolsch, on tap.

bravenrace PowerDork
5/7/13 11:21 a.m.


Akron - Windsor Pub on Tallmadge Avenue. They advertise that they have the best burgers on the planet. Idunno about that, but they are really, really, good.

Parma - Quikkee's bar and grill. Great food that is really cheap.

bludroptop SuperDork
5/7/13 11:22 a.m.

Hwy 168, Barco NC (the main road to Nags Head)

Frog Island Seafood - this is primarily a fish market, with a take-out counter and some naugahyde booths. Get the fried flounder sandwich or the shrimp po-boy - thank me later.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
5/7/13 11:27 a.m.

Bethlehem, PA
- Stahley's Restaurant & Sports Bar, cheap, good

Scranton, PA
- Mickey Gannon's Pub, best chicken wings in the continental US, no E36 M3, I travel a lot
- Chick's Diner, late night drunk food
- this town is made out of dive bars/restaurants and this list could be 30 or so long and still be pretty good.

Waymart, PA
- The Waymart Hotel , Great BBQ, pizza and very car/motorcycle friendly.

Jersey City, NJ
- The Light Horse Tavern, not cheap or a dive but really good
- The Iron Monkey
- there was another, more local and gritty place between the other two (a block or two further from the water) that was awesome but I cannot remember the name of it or it's precise location.

Philadelphia, PA
- Eulogy, Belgian beer and mussels to die for

Durea, PA
- Aurants, ecclectic menu with everything from sushi grade tuna to elk

Hartford, CT
- The Tavern Downtown, beer selection and sandwiches
- Vaughn's Irish Pub, Lamb's stew

Peoria, IL
- Hofbrau Restaurant, smoked pork chops

I could do this all day but... now I'm berkeleying starving so I'm going to go stuff my face.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
5/7/13 11:35 a.m.
Woody wrote: Not sure if it's still there, but I used to love Skyway Jack's, under Florida's Sunshine Skyway Bridge.

Fill me out a list for Hartford. I usually am downtown - and I'm sick and tired of all the walking-distance regular stuff. Where do the locals eat?

cwh PowerDork
5/7/13 11:53 a.m.

As I mentioned on the other thread- Southport Raw Bar, Cordova Rd., Ft. Lauderdale FL. Tom Jenkins BBQ. Voted best BBQ in the area. I agree. Federal Highway,just south of downtown Ft. Lauderdale.Alabama Jack's, Card Sound Rd, between Florida City and Ocean Reef Club. Great conch fritters and other bar foods. Used to be a major hang out for real smugglers, a lot tamer now. Still a very interesting place. I don't take visitors there,though.

Duke PowerDork
5/7/13 11:59 a.m.


Shellhammers - Northern DE, University Plaza, 1/2 mile east of I-95 on Rt 273
Bar / restaurant with very good food, from classics to modern. I recommend the Navajo Tacos or the Backdraft Roast Beef. Not a fish fan but I hear they do it well. Bonus points: Harbor Freight in same shopping center.

Durham's Barbecue - MD/DE border, 1 mile east of I-95 on Rt 279, between Elkton and Newark
Barbecue shack. Seating at picnic tables or on the hood of your car. As authentic as it gets around these parts. Cooked by a vaguely Unabomberish-looking guy and served by a multitude of his underage progeny. It's all delicious. Bonus points: right off an easy shortcut that bypasses the ridiculous Delaware tolls on the south end of I-95.

Helen's Sausage House - 1 mile north of Smyrna, right next to Rt 13N
Just what it says on the box. Breakfast and lunch only; it's a dive but man does Helen make sausage right. Counter service with indoor and outdoor seating. I recommend a sausage sandwich with egg, cheese whiz, and hot sauce. You can buy uncooked sausage to go. Bonus points: the Elvis shrine in the indoor dining room.

Iron Hill Brewery - Main Street / Newark, and Riverfront / Wilmington (also convenient to I-95)
Local microbrewery and restaurant group with excellent in-house-made beer selection and very good, slightly pretentious food.

ransom GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/7/13 12:09 p.m.

Portland, OR

  • Robo Taco, 607 SE Morrison St Portland, OR 97214 (full disclosure; it's my brother in law's place. But it really is awesome. Their specialty is al pastor pork, but I can't stay away from the carne asada torta and the huevos rancheros)

  • Edelweiss deli, 3119 SE 12th Ave Portland, OR 97202. Awesome German food; a few tables, broad selection of German beers in coolers and a few on tap, they do their own sausages and pork chops, as well as a bunch of Germany import miscellany.

  • Otto's Sausage Kitchen, 4138 Southeast Woodstock Boulevard Portland, Oregon 97202. They do some wonderful sausages. They always gave a grille outside going with a couple of kinds and hot dogs, as well as a counter inside with some great sandwiches. I got the Kitchen Sink on my first trip (summer sausage, salami, pastrami, misc condiments) and haven't been able to not order it since...

  • Hopworks Urban Brewery, 2944 SE Powell Blvd Portland, OR 97202. Good food, good selection of their own very good beer. Food-wise, my favorites are the pizza and the burgers...

I will come back and add more stuff later. There's a lot of good food here...

Enyar HalfDork
5/7/13 12:17 p.m.
Giant Purple Snorklewacker wrote: Jersey City, NJ - The Light Horse Tavern, not cheap or a dive but really good - The Iron Monkey - there was another, more local and gritty place between the other two (a block or two further from the water) that was awesome but I cannot remember the name of it or it's precise location.

Lot's of good stories about these places but the food has been hit or miss for me lately.

For Jersey City, I would like to add - The Golden Cicada - definitely a dive

Tampa Fl -Skippers Smokehouse - aweseome live music, cheap/good local sea food and cheap beer. -Wrights Sandwhiches - no secret, but excellent sandwhiches. Expect lines during lunch time. -Als Finger Licking BBQ- my favorite in town...watch for chickens.

Lake Wales Fl - La Botana - On the outside it's a latino convenience store but in the inside towards the back there is a little area where they serve food. Favorite mexican food in the state. They don't speak english but the point/sound it out method works for me. You'll be eating with all the folks that work in the fields and everyone is really friendly. Super fresh ingredients

Tequesta Fl - Pasquale's - excellent italian food and fri/sat night they usually have someone playing a harp or something interesting -Tequesta Brewing Company - great beers at great prices from a local brewery

SilverFleet Dork
5/7/13 12:34 p.m.

A couple quick ones...

Southeastern Massachusetts

Country Whip, Acushnet just after Route 105 turns toward Marion

This place is awesome. It's in the middle of a residential area out in the sticks, but it's worth the ride (and a cool ride it is, BTW). Great old-school burger stand food and awesome ice cream. My favorite is the Cowboy Burger, which is a half pound burger with American cheese, spicy BBQ sauce, bacon, and hand battered onion rings. It is a beast. They are also known for their seafood. A small ice cream is the size of a large at most places, and it's made locally, too. It's seasonal and closed for the winter.

No Problemo Taqueria, New Bedford (right in the downtown area)

Best burritos on the entire planet. Nothing can compare. Cheap, but cash only. They have a take-out counter as well as a regular restaurant area with a full bar. The only thing that this place could use is a recovery room that has cots so you can rest after housing one of their burritos. Seriously, time slows down after eating one. They also host free shows on Saturday nights, and lots of Stoner Metal bands have been playing there lately, like Elder, Magic Circle, and Pilgrim.

The Cabin, Middleboro (off of Exit 4 on 495, on Rt. 28)

Small place, and yes, it looks like a log cabin. Great seafood and really good pub-style pizzas. This one is right around the corner from my place. The pizzas are probably the best pub-sized ones I've had! Cheap eats too.

One more just south of Boston...

OB's Cafe, Quincy (on Billings Road, near Wollaston Beach)

My favorite breakfast place in the universe. Cheap and awesome, and they have great lunch too. They are cash only and only open until 3pm, but if you are in the area, it's a great spot. Order the Spuds and Scram (potato skins filled with scrambled eggs, bacon, and cheese, with toast, and more bacon, and home fries). It rules.

Sky_Render Dork
5/7/13 12:58 p.m.

Greencastle, PA


Awesome beer, and some of the best damn hamburgers evar.

Woody GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/7/13 1:47 p.m.
Giant Purple Snorklewacker wrote:
Woody wrote: Not sure if it's still there, but I used to love Skyway Jack's, under Florida's Sunshine Skyway Bridge.
Fill me out a list for Hartford. I usually am downtown - and I'm sick and tired of all the walking-distance regular stuff. Where do the locals eat?

Sorry, can't help you. I used to go to Hartford a couple of times each week, but I haven't eaten there in a long time.

Jerry HalfDork
5/7/13 1:54 p.m.

Only one I can remember off the top of my head:


Miamisburg - Nelly's chicken Dayton's best rotissierie!

t25torx New Reader
5/7/13 2:14 p.m.
93EXCivic wrote: Kentucky Wildfire BBQ- Franklin KY also really good BBQ.

This man speaks the truth. Best BBQ in the area, They had another location in White House, TN but sold it off, allegedly with the recipies to another family, since the 2 places were more work than he had time for. It's now Perry's Smokin' Pig, which is good, but not as good as Wildfire.


Fat Juicy Taco - Hendersonville, TN. Awesome California styl fresh mex. All the ingredients are fresh and prepped daily. They serve the fish tacos on soft tortillias, ask for the crunchy tortillias instead.

Pepper Fire - 2821 Gallatin Pike Nashville, TN. http://www.pepperfirechicken.com/ If you ge the "hot" level spiceyness be prepared for the aftermath.

poopshovel MegaDork
5/7/13 2:21 p.m.

Jasper and Blue Ridge (North Georgia)

Bubba-Q: Hole in the wall joint 5 minutes from my house. The place looks like a giant trophy room - not that that's everything, but they've got the food to back it up. Best brisket I've ever had - 3rd overall Jack Daniel's World Championship a few years ago. Killer ribs too. I've never really been impressed with BBQ pork and beef in general. Theirs is "good."

Blue Ridge Brewery: Right around the corner from work. Best burger I've ever had in a restaurant. Craft brews, and they're brewing their own now, and I hear good things.

16vCorey PowerDork
5/7/13 2:34 p.m.

Someone should really put up a website with a map of all these finds! Here's a few of mine:

Evansville, IN

Sportsman's Billiards - Great burgers, fresh cut fries using a 100 year old cast iron fry chopper thingy right in front of you, really good bar food in general. I've heard there steaks are also great, but I haven't had one.

The Cross-Eyed Cricket - Really good breakfast, especially the skillets and omelets. Awesome chimichangas.

The Hiiltop Inn - Pretty awesome everything. Voted the manliest restaurant in america in 2009. http://www.wegotbrains.com/

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess UltimaDork
5/7/13 2:35 p.m.

Houston, Westhiemer area.

Raja's House of Sweets: Small restaurant with the best Indian (dot) food you will ever find. "Authentic." Saag Paneer on Fri/Sat/Sun.

bastomatic SuperDork
5/7/13 2:46 p.m.

Lansing, Michigan: Golden Harvest. Breakfast and lunch. Cash only. LOUD music. Open til 2pm. Expect to wait to get a table, and then wait more for the food. But it is worth all of that.

Get the Bubba Sandwich.

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