Helpful ReplyGLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited to LITTLE ROCK ARKANSAS

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mayor al
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/15 20:48:34 (permalink)
Home Safely after 560 milrs of cold, but no storm driving from Little Rock. In addition to meeting some reaaly nice folks  and enjoying three outstanding RF meals in Hot Springs and Little Rock/ Janet and I stopped in Sikeston. MO to enjoy a couple of meals at the home of the famous "Throwed Rolls"= LAMBERTs CAFE. An Interesting Experience, to be sure... Plus, check our report to see what we found "Next Door" to Lamberts..
  Report will begon ASAP.  Meantime, Goodnight.
Michael Hoffman
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/15 20:55:26 (permalink)
Glad you made it home safely.
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/15 21:49:24 (permalink)
A small gathering but a fun one!  Enjoyed the company very much, and the wonderful barbecue, catfish, steak, and other assorted goodies (soaked salad!).  Doe's was really spectacular! Got TravelingManned at Cozy Corner in Memphis on Friday but managed to find some smoked baloney in Arkansas.  Oh!  Speaking of soaked, I also enjoyed a refreshing soak in the Hot Springs mineral springs.  I had an uneventful trip home, thankful I wasn't going in WJ's direction! Missed all of you who couldn't join us.
will_work_4_bbq
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/16 00:17:37 (permalink)
Oh!  And buckwheat pancakes with blueberries!
mayor al
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/16 12:39:26 (permalink)
This was a rather unique Glee Club Meeting, to be sure. Small would be the wrong word...perhaps Intimate would be a better descriptor. It felt like a family dinner more than a group thing. While the jockeying of the multitude was missing, the ability to talk across the table to folks as if we were at home was a good experience for sure, and meeting Dan and Boyd for the first time was a pleasant experience for both Janet and me. 
  We left home at 4 AM (EST) Friday morning, taking a couple of stretch breaks along the way...one in Cairo (Kay-ro) IL, where we photographed "Shemwell's BBQ" A place recommended to us several years ago, that we tried ONE time, and never forgave the RF'er who sent us to that paticular location. No details to share now as it has been several years, but we did finally capture a photo of the outside and the term "disaster" would come close to our experience there....  Then on to our planned lunch stop in Sikeston, MO. at LAMBERTs CAFE.
  Lamberts is well known as the home of the "Throwed Rolls". Servers toss the warm dinner rolls across the dining room to patrons as a gimmick that apparently draws folks in to participate. At least that's what we thought til we got there... In reality the food at Lamberts is way above average. My CFS was tender and grease free The sides of cucumber salad and okra were very good, they passed out 'freebies (pass-arounds) of fried potatoes, black-eyed peas, rolls, sorgum and apple butter, and other tasty items. Janet had a plate of Chicken Livers, again lightly breaded and grease-free. A lot of them, as I tried a couple and she saved some for Demi in a Doggie Bag.
  We stopped at Lamberts again on the way home and did the camera work then, so hold on, waiting for photos.  I will endorse them saying we had always considered the place to be all hype and not quality food ...and I was Wrong.  The food is worth going out of your way for...and if you are traveling I-55 or 57  or US 60 anywhere near the Confluence of the OHIO and MISSISSIPPI RIVERS, you need to seriously consider a stop in Sikeston, MO !!! 
    Now the BONUS POINTS in SIKESTON, MO. Right next door to Lamberts Cafe, I mean parking lots touching each other, is a FRIED PIE SHOP and Gas Station that is absolutely amazing. It is loosely connected to the original Pie Shop in Oklahoma that is known as the home of the "Original OK Fried Pie". At any rate they make the pies to order , right in front of you. Check the menu sign for the varieties. They are larger and contain much more fruit than 'other' fried pies we have tried from that area. More on this later, but the place is open 7 days a week and takes phone orders to have ready when you use their drive thru window if that suits your fancy.  Just so you know we bought roughly 2 dozen of the pies and many have already passed the taste test.  Sikeston, Mo has received a big PLUS on my places to stop list.
  W e  made it to Little Rock, checked into the La Quinta Inn and after unloading, reboarded the truck and headed for Hot Springs. Traffic was commuter-heavy at 6PM and I was un-familiar with the roads, so we relied on the gps that did a fair job of getting us there..and arrived at Stubby's BBQ right on time.
 
  The group gathered around what turned into the family dinner table, with all of us, Dale, Dan, Boyd, Mike, Lynn, Janet, and Myself, swapping stories and enjoying the good parts of the BBQ (the Ribs were quite good) and remarking that some of the sides were rather 'routine' (potato-salad). It might have been a less-than-peak-evening for Stubby's for it seems that we have read some super reviews in the past, and this evening the food did not live up to that level.  Back to the motel for some rest...we skipped breakfast, I'll ask Lynn to report on her Pancake treats...
 
For lunch we had agreed to take Dale's suggestion of "Mr Whisker's" , a Catfish house with various other choices for those not fond of "Fiddlers" . It is located in a strip mall a few blocks from Stubby's.  You order from the menu board and they bring it out to you. Prices were quite reasonable we thought.
  My choice was the Catfish Oyster and Shrimp combo plate. 4 large pieces of each, with FF and slaw.  A really fine lunch. Janet had her Catfish broiled and they did a nice job with it also.
photo insert
 
Saturday evenng we met at Doe's Eat Place in Little Roack. Boyd had to return to Dallas, so we were reduced to a 'family' of 6, which made seating on a busy Valentine's evening much easier for the Doe's staff. We enjoyed a long evening of conversation and the usual excellent dinners. Little Rock is apparently a place where early dining is the custom, as by a little after 8:30 PM we pretty much had the dining room to ourselves, and by 9PM we we alone. All in all it was a very good evening. We love the Porterhouse and Garlic Shrimp and Texas Toast combonation that makes a Doe's Dinner special, at the three stores we have visited so far, Little Rock, Greenville, and Paducah...They all serve quality Beef !
  Sunday morning we reversed our route to return home...stopping again at Lamberts Cafe to double Check our original evaluation...this time the place was crowded with folks, but the staff still kept things moving and the food was as good as the previous visit. We had called an order in to the Fried Pie Shop earlier, so when we left Lamberts Janet went in and picked up our take home order of Lemon, Blackberry, Cherry, Apricot, Pecan, and Peach pies. It was a long, uneventful ride home, but the gas was still under $2.00 a gallon in Corydon, IN when we got there to fill-up just before arriving home at about 7pm last night. Now let's get our photos posted...
Photos coming folks  editing takes this old guy time..

 
 OK I will attempt to add a group edit of photos here with captions added in between them, after they get posted. Using the RF Insider  for graphics is a bit more complicated than I used to use, but it seems to work... Patience, please.
 

 Dan took the Group Photo at Stubbys-- Lynn, Mike Janet, Mayor, WJ, and Boyd.
 Pleasant group to share dinner with.
 

 Dan , with a tray full of Stubby's BBQ Sandwich and side dishes
 

 The RF version of saying Grace..always involves blessing the food with a camera !!!
 

 WJ shared his BBQ Potato and Ribs
 

 Mike said the Beef and Ham were excellent, but the side dishes were average at best.
 

 Boyd, Lynn, and Mike. Boyd joined us coming up from Dallas.
 
 

 Saturday- My Catfish, Oyster- & Shrimp plate from Mr Whiskers.
A good combo plate for me
 

 Janet had broiled Catfish with Black Beans. She sid the Fish was great and the Black Beans weren't !!
 
 

 Lynn liked her Fish and Srimp Combo plate and the Hush Puppies were fresh and hot too.
 

 Dan and Boyd enjoyed their fish also
 

 A couple of orders of Bread Pudding were passed around for tasting by all who wanted to sample it.

 Like all the Doe's Stores, they pride themselves on being located in a seedy neighborhood.
The Little Rook restaurant is no different. Dumpy and run down is a fair description..but the Steaks remain outstanding.
 

 Mike enjoyed a before-dinner Martini
 

 while Dan and WJ study the menu.
 

 Mike shared his sampler plate of Delta Tamles

 We did not share our Garlic Shrimp...hehehehe Boy were they good...

 Lynn went for the 8oz Filet a very delicate cut... very tender meat.

 Jan & I  (and WJ and Dan had one also) enjoyed the 3 lb Porterhouse. I must admit
I had trouble telling the strip side  from the filet side on this steak. Both sides were very tender and full-flavored.

 The last few pieces went in a Doggie Bag,,but not for Deni. I enjoyed a Steak Sandwich Today.

 Here's Demi's Treat for Saturday night..and when we told her about it....

 This was her reaction.

 So Janet held it for her to gnaw on for awhile.

 Sunday Morning we stopped at Lamberts again on the way home

 The place was pretty busy at noon on Sunday (after church crowd)

 My Catfish with all their extras was very good- cucumbers,apples,fried potatoes, hush puppies and a lot of good fish
 

 Janet hd CFS with Mushroom gravy, rolls w/apple butter, white beans/ham, greens,slaw, another fine lunch

 Samples of the Fried Pies found next door to Lamberts

 an out of sequence farewell to Lynn and Mike...

 The Fried Pie Shop (and Gas Station, next to Lamberts Cafe

 Entrance

 Place your order at the counter, or call it in ahead and pick it up here.

 Prices are pretty reasonable.

 Pies are made to order, but they do have some in the Bakers rack if you don't want to wait.

 their info card

 
 We brought home about 2 dozen pies, not counting several we 'tried for taste' on the way home. The Lemon is number one on my list...with Apricot right behind it.  Janet likes the Apricot best..
 
OK thats a brief summary of our weekend. We had a good time , wished that more folks had turned out, but enjoyed the company of Dale, Mike and Lynn again...and Meeting Dan and Boyd was great, I hope our paths will cross again soon.
al
 
 
 
post edited by mayor al - 2015/02/16 19:27:38
ChiTownDiner
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/16 14:28:37 (permalink)
Nice summary Mayor!  Are you still planning on only displaying pictures of WJ instead of food? 
lleechef
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/16 18:12:23 (permalink)
Nice write-up Al!  So sorry we couldn't make it. Sounds like you all ate well and glad you went home with pie! 
ann peeples
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/16 20:34:47 (permalink)
I am so glad you encountered the fried pie place. We ate at the original one in Arbuckle Mountain, OK and loved them! Apricot was my favorite, and Bob thought the lemon was fantastic. Gotta say, though, the pecan was right behind the apricot!
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/16 20:41:32 (permalink)
Al
 
Thanks for adding those photos and thanks for giving me the incentive to go on a diet. Last spring really screwed things up for me. You know how some folks look younger when their faces are fuller....well...I'm the exact opposite- makes me look much older... 
will_work_4_bbq
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/16 21:36:30 (permalink)
Great pictures of great people and great food!  I have to say, however, I did enjoy the sides at Stubby's.  My Mom's potato salad was always very mustardy, so Stubby's took me back....in a good way!  The steaks at Doe's......wow! They were as impressive and delicious as they look!  Tender and flavorful.  And the shrimp....thanks to Poverty Pete for the recommendation!  Janet and Al, your (second) Lambert's visit looks like it was a wonderful stop; and what a find next door!
WJ - I watched the Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary show last night.  Kevin Nealon is now much heavier than you!  Older too.....he probably has ten years on you.  You look like his skinny, baby brother.  
ScreamingChicken
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 08:13:17 (permalink)
Lots of good-looking food but that Doe's porterhouse really takes the cake!  And I wouldn't've shared that garlic shrimp, either.
 
Al, by any chance did you get a photo of Shemwell's in Cairo?  It's probably the place I noticed (but didn't stop at) when I passed through back in 2008.
mayor al
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 09:40:55 (permalink)
I got an out door shot of Shemwells as we passed thru town.  The story behind this place goes back about 6 or 7 years. When we were headed to this area a RF friend, (RIP) recommended the "Best BBQ" in the area to us, so we tried  it and found it to be somewhat less than average...not for the food...had we bought take out and not looked inside the place, it might have been ok, but the interior was a disaster. Cigarette ashes falling off the cooks smoking into the cooker... and a Rest Room about half the size of an old fashioned phone booth..with the original bi-folding door included.
   Yeah, It had not been modernized since General Grant moved his headquarters out of the town in 1862...So when we saw the place last Friday, I wanted a memory photo, but only of the outside.  Ancient Mariner, Wherever you are , I hope you are getting an Angelic Chuckle over this one... I think you pulled one over on the Mayor..

post edited by mayor al - 2015/02/18 05:34:53
Louis
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 10:19:33 (permalink)
Good report, Al.   I ate at the Little Rock Doe's three years ago--two nights in a row.  Excellent food.  The Paducah, Kentucky Doe's, however, is not in a seedy neighborhood.  It's downtown by the river.  The exterior, however, is a bit seedy, purposely so, I thought.
 
I drove by Lambert's last March on my way back from Colorado.  The huge parking lot was jammed packed.  Looked like a two-hour wait at least--at 4 p.m.  So I drove on to Paducah for an hour and ate at Doe's.
 
Last time I was in Lambert's I ate my meal and then got a sack of hog jowls to go.  Never had had those before.  They were pretty good.  They gave me more than I could eat in that to-go order for the next two days.
 
lleechef
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 10:50:28 (permalink)
I LOVE the RF version of saying Grace! 
Al, don't you know Demi wants her food on fine china and not on the floor?  She's a lady!
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 11:49:50 (permalink)
Louis, We've made our own Jowl Bacon from our hunting rewards and enjoy it a lot...but like Jerky it is "chewy" to say the least. More to be a snack on the road or at home, not for a dining out meal...so we passed it over. Next time I might get a take out as you did..I am sure it would last quite some time.
 
About the crowds at Lamberts..
   On Friday, we arrived at 10:30 am just as it opened and for the first thirty minutes or so there were less than 25 customers in the place. By 11:30 the place was pretty busy, but the line waiting did not reach outside. SUNDAY we arrived before church let out...the lot had a bunch of cars and the place was jumping, but we had no wait for seating...when we left the line extended out the door and onto the covered veranda, estimated at a 30 min. wait at that point.
  I agree, the 'Seedy' look on Doe's in Paducah is a "Put-On", It is on the town squre at the floodwall, full of Artesy-Fartesy" murals and antique shops and such. It is our favorite Doe's store.
mayor al
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 21:51:57 (permalink)
DID any of you folks get a photo of the outside of the Mr Whiskers Storefront? I think we need to get that into the RF review list..I have a couple of food shots and one of the counter that may pass...if you have any that could be used let me know please.  Does and Stubbys are already posted on the list.
 
I just added Lamberts and the Fried Pie Shop tonight.
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 22:02:55 (permalink)
mayor al
I got an out door shot of Shemwells as we passed thru town.  The story behind this place goes back about 6 or 7 years. When we were headed to this area a RF friend, (RIP) recommended the "Best BBQ" in the area to us, so we tried  it and found it to be somewhat less than average...not for the food...had we bought take out and not looked inside the place, it might have been ok, but the interior was a disaster. Cigarette ashes falling off the cooks smoking into the cooker... and a Rest Room about half the size of an old fashioned phone booth..with the original bi-folding door included.
   Yeah, It had not been modernized since General Grant moved his headquarters out of the town in 1862...So when we saw the place last Friday, I wanted a memory photo, but only of the outside.  Ancient Mariner, Wherever you are UP There, I hope you are getting an Angelic Chuckle over this one...



Ancient Mariner? Up here? When?
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 22:08:12 (permalink)
mayor al
DID any of you folks get a photo of the outside of the Mr Whiskers Storefront? I think we need to get that into the RF review list..I have a couple of food shots and one of the counter that may pass...if you have any that could be used let me know please.  Does and Stubbys are already posted on the list.
 
I just added Lamberts and the Fried Pie Shop tonight.


 
Al

I do have several photos of Mr Whisker's- the storefront and the interior. I only have  my food photos and a couple of photos of the bread pudding. I intend to do a review eventually but it won't be for at least a few weeks. I'm hoping to complete a review of Big Boy's Original Smokehouse in Columbia SC first
Uncle Groucho
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/17 22:48:01 (permalink)
Very good report and pictures , Does and the fried pies got my attention! I'm glad you'all  had a good time and good weather. Maybe I'll tag along some time on a future trip. Now hurry up and post some more pictures.                                                           Karl
mayor al
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 05:26:18 (permalink)
Michael,
  The Ancient One was the fellow who issued the positive comments about Shemwell's BBQ. The old guy must have sent his seeing eye dog in to pick up a take out package, as he would not have offered a good review after seeing the place in operation, that's for sure. He was not present in Cairo last week to encourage us to enter the business (again).
 
If you have not visited Cairo, IL. You Should. It is a classic example of a withering and dying rural town... Suffering a very long , drawn-out, return to dust and dirt. It is a very depressing place to visit, even if you are just passing thru.
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 08:18:44 (permalink)
mayor al
If you have not visited Cairo, IL. You Should. It is a classic example of a withering and dying rural town... Suffering a very long , drawn-out, return to dust and dirt. It is a very depressing place to visit, even if you are just passing thru.

Exactly the impression I got back in 2008, except for 2 rather elegant buildings which IIRC might be the library and the county courthouse.  US-51 from Bloomington, IL south to Memphis has some pretty down stretches.
 
Thanks for posting the photo of Shemwell's.  I don't remember the name on the side wall but it's definitely the building I remember driving past; even though it was fairly early in the morning it was open for business and there were a few vehicles in the parking lot.
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 10:02:29 (permalink)
Roz and I drove through Cairo a few years ago.  Al is right as it appears dead.  That is a shame as it has such a potential where the Ohio confluences with the Mississippi.  I did not see the BBQ place and now I am glad I did not.  Roz and I made it to Paducah and spent the night.  We missed Doe's which we were sorry.
 
Paul E. Smith
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Michael Hoffman
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 12:37:09 (permalink)
Mr. Mayor, I've been in Cairo. The last time was several years ago. I'll skip a return visit.
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 13:16:25 (permalink)
Mr. Mayor or Mike S.  
A bit off topic but which La Quinta in LP did you stay at and how was it?  I see there are 5 LQ's around there now. A couple on the westside of town are getting poor reviews but have decent prices.  Thanks for your input.
Planning a trip later in the spring that'll touch on some different parts of the state but probably have 1-2 nights in LR.
 
Enjoying reading all the posts and see the pictures here.  Sorely tempted to go with the group but life just got in the way and I'd had to spend other time in other places, not just Little Rock or Hot Springs.
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 13:27:15 (permalink)
Michael Hoffman
Mr. Mayor, I've been in Cairo. The last time was several years ago. I'll skip a return visit.


Sorta scenic but absolutely nothing to do there. I guess at one time it was a important city????
 
Paul E. Smith
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Michael Hoffman
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 14:23:33 (permalink)
It was important. During the War of Northern Aggression Cairo was Grant's headquarters for his Western Campaign.
Sundancer7
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 14:51:48 (permalink)
As always Michael, you are correct:
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cairo,_Illinois
 
Paul E. Smith
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 16:42:25 (permalink)
Sundancer7
As always Michael, you are correct:
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cairo,_Illinois
 
Paul E. Smith
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Really Paul...I don't find any mention of Northern Aggression in that description...
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 17:05:19 (permalink)
mayor al
I got an out door shot of Shemwells as we passed thru town.



Believe it or not Al, your photo indicates a major make-over for Shemwell's.  Mrs. Roadhouse and I did a week long tour of Southern Illinois back in the early part of the century (sounds weird to say that, right?).  We'd spend the days driving back and forth from the Indiana and Kentucky borders on the east to the Missouri border on the west, exploring Shawnee National Forest and all the small towns surrounding it.  We'd break for Lunch and Dinner, ingesting a steady diet of Barbecue from tiny mom and pop stands scattered around the area.
 
Shemwell's was among the choices.  It was a beat up, ramshackle old pit with falling apart clapboard siding and a dilapidated awning barely hanging over the front entrance.  The inside, however, was almost pristine; a time capsule of a Greasehouse that had seen it's best days long ago.  I only wish I had a scanner so I could get those old photos, shot on film, onto the website and contrast them with the picture above.
 
In fact, the more i think about it, I'm of the opinion that your disappointment stemmed not from the shabby inside, but from the refurbished outside.  Think about it: If you'd discovered some beat up old 'Que joint in a shabby neighborhood down south, it would have been considered a "find".  But you came across a shiny new exterior, hinting at something else which wasn't delivered.  We entered a run down old shack and found a lovely vintage dining room, reminiscent of so many classic diners, lovingly reviewed here on Roadood.
 
I'll bet that first impression skewed your opinion of the food, too.  You admit that a blind tasting might have garnered a better review of the grub.  Based on our first impression of the outside, not only was the inside that much more appealing, we thought the 'Que was pretty good too.  Certainly not the best on the trip (southern Illinois is a hot bed of Southern Style Pork Barbecue in the vein of the Carolinas and Georgia), but not the worst either.  I'll admit, their sauce is a little weird though.
 
Buddy
post edited by BuddyRoadhouse - 2015/02/18 17:09:45
mayor al
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Re:GLEE CLUB MEETING-- All Invited 2015/02/18 17:34:18 (permalink)
Crew84- We stayed at the La Quinta located at 1010 Breckenridge Drive. It is called "The one at  RODNEY-PARHAM Road". The total forTwo Nights,  two persons, handicapped room with pet. was $120 and change.  Mike S stayed at another La Quinta Inn. It was clean and relatively quiet.We made minimum use of the facility, only drinking their coffee and OJ in the mornings and monitoring the weather channel in the room.
My onlygripe was the small bathroom. Access with a walker was difficult, but it was clean and housekeeping replaced the toilet articles during room cleaning the second day.  We would use it again for a short stay due to low cost, nd easy access to the 430 freeway.
 
Buddy I was working with a weak memory of the BBQ in Cairo. I could not swear to the exact building as to which was the disaster we hit on on first round...but since this was the only one we saw in a rather extensive tour of the town, I felt it had to be the one. Whatever the previous situation was...it was not good...and outward apperance now seems to be an improvement...perhaps some brave RF soul will test the quality of the food and survive to report back to us.
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