The mini odyssey of southern chain eateries gathered pace at a much-revered classic, Waffle House.
Fans of Anthony Bourdain will remember the episode where Sean Brock took Tony to Waffle House as part of his introduction to Charleston.
The place is open 24 hours making it a popular post-bar and hangover location, so I wasn’t sure that I would find the greatest quality on offer. The pricetag for our stay – a total of $16.47 for a hearty feed for both of us – again didn’t suggest a high calibre experience.
But the reality was actually rather pleasing.
The interior is much like a British transport caff or greasy spoon with formica to the fore. There’s a classic diner counter and open kitchen where line cooks prep things to order.
We had a rather lovely moment on our visit where the kitchen started singing along with the jukebox selection of the Bill Withers classic Lean on Me. The whole place – us included – joined in. It was kinda beautiful.
For food, it took us a moment to make our selection. MJ settled upon an array of elements – grits, scrambled eggs, dry toast – which made a hearty little plate.
I jumped in with a Texas bacon patty melt with hash browns, plus a pecan waffle topped with chocolate chips and subsequently butter and syrup.
Things arrived in short order delivered by our friendly waitress. The patty melt featured a burger of questionable quality but very decent flavour and the Texas toast – thick grilled buttery toast, much in the style of fried bread – was rather joyful.
The waffle was also pretty good. It was far too sweet for my palate, but I muddled on like the committed food pioneer that I have grown to be, slathering butter and syrup aplenty atop the light and airy waffle.
MJ shown all signs of approbation for her selections, but her munching was also through the prism of many fun meals here down the years about which she regaled me with the edited highlights.
Overall, Waffle House was very pleasantly surprising in its simple, tasty dishes. The pricetag was ridiculously low, putting me in mind of the hawker markets of Singapore. It’s definitely one to add to your list for a visit.
Blythe scores Waffle House
4/5 for food
3/5 for presentation
3.5/5 for service
2.5/5 for setting
giving an overall 13/20
Today’s questers were: MJ, Blythe
We ate: scrambled eggs, toast, grits, pecan waffle, texas patty melt, hashbrowns
We drank: water
We wore: boat shoes, worn-to-fuck denim
Total bill: $16.47