I have some favorite things I love to eat from some of the best places I've ever eaten. These are places that most people wouldn't think twice about eating there. They are not 5 star restaurants. There is no linen on the tables and no fancy waiters hovering near by to see to your every need. But they are the places that I crave a particular item. The first one is one that many of our locals will agree with me has the best food you will ever put in your mouth. Frank Allen's is a family owned grill inside a family owned gas station.
But the burgers, hot dogs and fries are guaranteed to keep you coming back for more.
In Huntington, WV there is a hot dog stand that has been there since 1932. The building is the home of the best hot dogs you will ever put in your mouth. I crave these things so bad sometimes that me and Allen have actually made the 5 hour trip back home and planned the trip around when we could eat at Stewart's Hot Dogs.
No dine in service and the hot dog sauce (chili) is made fresh daily. The root beer is always served in an ice cold frosted mug. You can purchase the Stewart's Root Beer in stores now but not the dogs.
The next place on my "I highly recommend" places is a small restaurant in Myrtle Beach, SC. It was called Ritzy's for many, many years and the owner closed it down and retired after having it for 17 years. In 2003, he reopened under a new name but with the same great food. He decided retirement wasn't for him.
I go there every time I go to the beach...and sometimes twice just for the delicious cheeseburgers and the 1950's ambiance.
The next one is one I saw on an Alton Brown show where he did road trips across the US finding the best places to eat. It is Jack's Cosmic Dogs in Mount Pleasant, SC right outside of Charleston. We took a day trip down that way one year when we went to Myrtle Beach and the hot dog was well worth the drive. The place looked like a little dive and we were a little leery to go eat there.
Until we went in. Oh my goodness, the sheer number of ways they could do a dog was unreal. Of course, me being me, I had the basic hot dog with chili and mustard and onion.
There are some places that the food is okay and they are a chain so you can get them anywhere. K & W Cafeteria in Myrtle Beach is one place that is on my "must do when I go back" places.
But not because of the food which was well, food. Nothing fabulous. Nothing I would give anything to have again....except the big slice of two layer coconut cake. I dream about this cake. I long for another piece of this cake. Sherrie and I ate their last year and oh my goodness this was a big ol' gooey slice of heaven. We are going back again this year. At K & W, you walk through cafeteria style and tell them what you want and only pay for the items you get, not a one-price for everything establishment. So we are going to go to Burky's for hamburgers for a late lunch and then heading down that evening to K & W to have dessert. Sounds crazy, but oh my goodness if you ever had this cake you would know it is so worth it.
The last place and my absolute favorite is locally owned Gino's Pizza of Barboursville, WV. I grew up with this pizza and it is still my favorite food on the planet. Sometimes when I go home to visit, I will have it two nights in a row. I can't get enough of Gino's when I go home.
People back home know how much I crave it and will actually send me pics any time they have it for supper. Which makes me crave it even more. I have even bought it and wrapped it up and put it in a cooler on ice to have again when I get home from my trip. They keep growing and expanding and have many locations in West Virginia, but they have moved outside the state yet. I keep hoping and praying that "maybe someday".
Well, now I'm starving. I'm getting ready to make my Reese Peanut Butter Brownie Trifle to take to work today. It is always a huge hit with the crowd. Of course, with Reese cups, brownies, Cool Whip, peanut butter and vanilla pudding, what's not to love.
Have a great Tuesday!