Iâ€™m happy to have Tio Wally (long-time Me So Hungry reader) aboard to send in his eating adventures from across America. Here he is in Sylvester, Georgia.
Greetings from Sylvester, Georgia
N 31Â° 31.862â€™Â W 083Â° 50.599â€™Â Elev. 388 ft.
I arrived here a day early with a leaking power steering box to pick up 22 tons of Peter Pan peanut butter. So while I was at the auto parts store buying some miraculous Lucas Power Steering Stop Leak I asked the guys where the good food was. One of them recommended Jacksonâ€™s Soul Food Kitchen, adding â€œThatâ€™s some seriously good food.â€ So I went and, well, had some very, very seriously good food.
Jacksonâ€™s one of those meat-and-three-sides places where theyâ€™ll have a few meats and maybe a half-dozen sides to choose from. These used to be really common in the South but are, sadly, rapidly disappearing it seems.
The meat choices that day were Cube Steak in gravy, and either Fried or Baked Chicken. Side choices were Rice (white), Yams, Collard Greens, Squash (yellow), and Green Beans or Butter Beans (Baby Lima) with Ham Hock. It also came with a piece of Corn Bread and your choice from an assortment of slices of pie or cake for dessert, and a drink.
For lunch I had the Cube Steak ($9.58 w/tax), with yams, squash and green beans, and a Sweet Tea. For dessert I chose Caramel Cake.
This stuff was seriously, seriously, seriously good, all homemade and cooked to perfection Southern-style (i.e. mushy veggies). The Cube Steak was very tender, which is often not the case with cube steak. The squash and green beans were wonderful, the latter with big pieces of ham hock in it. The yams â€” which I love anywayâ€” were out of this world. The yams werenâ€™t cubed but rather large slices. And I donâ€™t know what they do but I swear theyâ€™re using either pineapple or orange juice in the preparation. Whatever it is, itâ€™s goo-ood.
The sweet tea was also homemade and delicious. The Caramel Cake was also great. Having never had it before I expected it to be sickeningly sweet, but it wasnâ€™t at all. It was so good, in fact, I ended up picking crumbs of cake off the plate with my fingers. I wanted it all, I wanted it to last.
One of the curious things, for me, was the corn bread. I wouldâ€™ve called it a hoe cake or griddle cake before Iâ€™d call it corn bread. Itâ€™s actually fried rather than baked. Moreover, this stuff wasnâ€™t as sweet nor made solely with yellow corn meal as is common. It seems toâ€™ve been made with white corn meal and, possibly, flour. It actually kind of reminded me of a pupusa. It was still good and made a good sopper-upper for the gravy; I really shouldâ€™ve taken a picture of my plate after I finished as it looked like it had just been washed.
The food at Jacksonâ€™s was so good that I ended up getting a dark meat Fried Chicken ($8.51 w/tax) meal with yams, yams, butter beans with ham hock, and Buttermilk Pie to-go for dinner.
The fried chicken was fantastic! Perfectly seasoned, not too crispy, not greasy at all and really moist. The butter beans were freakinâ€™ awesome; I really I shouldâ€™ve gotten double of them, too. The Buttermilk Pie, which Iâ€™d also never had before, was also great. Really moist and creamy, not too sweet and sort of lemony.
An oddity, if you can call it that, was that Soul Food places sometimes get heavy handed with the salt. Not so at Jacksonâ€™s. They really did everything right, especially by letting the ham hock add the natural salt/seasoning to the butter beans and green beans.
Jacksonâ€™s Soul Food Kitchen was a great recommendation/find. Iâ€™d highly recommend it myself, probably adding â€œThis is some seriously good food!â€ Seriously soulful, and seriously, seriously, seriously great.
And so we roll.
Jacksonâ€™s Soul Food Kitchen
602 W. Franklin St., Sylvester, Georgia
Tio Wally pilots the 75-foot, 40-ton(max) land yacht SS Me So Hungry. He reports on road food from around the country whenever parking and InterTube connections permit.