Eatin’ and Drivin’, Drivin’ and Eatin’

Eatin’ and a Drivin’, Drivin’ and a Eatin’

The wide open road offers the traveler many things. Peace and calm, long stretches of land full of solitude and reflection. Broad picturesque views and rolling mountainsides dot the land, with a car often the only inhabitant for miles. Quirky road side stops, local flavor changing from city to city, mile to mile. The road can nourish the soul, the mind, and the stomach. Stops along the way break the monotony of driving and offer a slap in the face of the culture and food of the land.

Snow covered Grand Canyon

Heading west from Los Angeles, a detour north is unescapable, for the immense caverns of the Grand Canyon lay within a days drive. Topped with snow, even a few minutes in the national park are breathtaking, the surreal views showcasing the bounty of the landscape. Driving west toward New Mexico, a stop at Whataburger is a must. The pride of the southwestern hamburger joints, this juicy burger is best alongside a mikshake and fries, true road trip style.

Late night driving west into Texas is lonesome. The road becomes impossibly dark and unnervingly empty. Morning sunshine brings clouds so low you can reach out and touch them and a true Texan lunch of barbecue. With large outdoor grills full of brisket, chicken, half-smokes, ribs, Rudy’s BBQ is a mainstay of San Antonio. The meat is tender and juicy, covered in dry rub and then dipped in Rudy’s homemade sauce. Baked beans and coleslaw are a must for sides, and the sweet creamed corn offsets the spicy meats. Finished off with an ice-cold root beer, this giant sized lunch is serious business in Texas.

BBQ doesn't get better than at Rudy's

Home to the Alamo, the river-walk,  and a diverse spread of Southwestern culture, San Antonio is also a great place to try local Mexican cuisine. Hidden back a woodsy area at outskirts of San Antonio, El Bosque is stomping ground of the locals with a lot of flavor. The signature dish, chili rellenos stuffed with a sweet and spicy mixture of beef and raisins, is reason enough to make the trip. And you won’t be able to get enough of the Tex Mex staples of beans, rice, taquitos, and enchiladas.

Platter from El Bosque

Heading further West, the sky fills with a dramatic mixture of pinks and reds as the sun sets on Texas.

Texan Sunset

Pull into New Orleans in the deep night and the city is still alive with party goers walking Bourbon Street. Whether you spend the night driving or drinking, breakfast in New Orleans is definitely beignets at Cafe du Monde. Listen to street performers belt out jazz classics at this famed waterfront cafe, watching tourists and locals traipse through the cities historic streets. Hot, powdered sugar covered beignets and cafe au lait provide a great start for a day of exploring NoLa.

Walk the streets, take a step back in time and marvel at the beauty of a city rebuilt. Outdoor cafes and bars offer spirits in true New Orleans style with live music; shops provide cajun spices, gumbo seasoning, and cookbooks, true souvenirs for the foodie traveler.

A trip to New Orleans must include a good southern meal and Acme Oyster House really shows off creole cuisine. Fresh oysters, shucked at the bar, greet guests into this award-winning New Orleans staple. And when in NoLa, a po-boy and gumbo are definite musts. Juicy shrimp, breaded and fried are stuffed into a soft roll, topped with tomatoes, lettuce, and tabasco spiked mayo. Served in a bread bowl, spicy, earthy and full of flavor, Acme’s gumbo shows off what makes this dish a New Orleans favorite.

Beignets and Cafe au Late at Cafe du Monde

Oysters Galore at Acme Oyster House

From New Orleans there is no where to go but North into Tennessee. A must-stop for a the foodie road tripper, Memphis is another city who boasts the best barbecue. At Blues City Cafe, ribs slathered in sweet, spicy sauce, crispy fries and buttery toast really hit the spot. And nothing says the south like a tall glass of  sweet tea.

BBQ in Memphis, TN

Finally, the east coast appears as the monuments of Washington DC graze the skyline. Maryland crab defines this area of the east and crab cakes at Eastern Market make a lovely lunch. Peruse the vendors of the market, purchase meats and vegetables, pastries and fresh flowers. End with a a market lunch, a juicy crab cake on a delicate, sweet roll and large heaping of coleslaw.

Crab Cakes at Eastern Market

From west to east, the foodie traveller can certainly eat their way across the country. From road stops to pit stops, eating plays a big part of driving long treks. One might say it’s even be the reason for the trip after all. With a good friend by your side and a good meal in your stomach, any day is a great day to start a foodie road trip.


1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Annie said,

    Katherine! I just found your site and I absolutely love it!

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