Born and raised in the deep south, I've lived (and studied) all over the world. Currently live in Virginia with my hubby and twelve year old son. I love to cook for my family, friends, and our snarky little dachshunds (the pickiest eaters of them all!)

  • Location: Williamsburg, VA
  • Favorite foods: Seafood, any kind as long as it's REALLY fresh,
    homemade pasta,
    cheese (any kind but processed American - yechhhkkkkk),
    Thai food,
    Gus' Fried Chicken!!!!!
  • Last bite on earth: Oh, that is easy... seafood ravioli from a long since closed restaurant named Mario's. It was sublime.

Latest Comments

Video: Hambone's Pizza Toppings Taste Test

Oh my... Hambone is too adorable! Ignore the trolls!

The Food Lab, Drinks Edition: Is Mexican Coke Better?

Awesome article/ comparison! I have to agree with the others- passover coke is wonderful. :-)

ways to improve brewed decaf iced tea

We use decaf Luzianne family size tea bags... four bags for a 3 quart pitcher. Pour really hot (almost boiling) water over the bags and steep for 15 minutes. Remove tea bags and add 3/4 cup sugar (or splenda... which is what we use) while still hot. Allow to cool at room temp. to avoid cloudy tea. Serve over ice with a lemon wedge and fresh sprig of mint. Yummy!

Proper Sweet Tea in New York

I grew up in Mississippi and now live in Virginia. The only way to make proper southern sweet tea is to start with tea bags that are blended for iced tea. (Luzianne or Community tea bags)

We use four family sized tea bags for a 3 quart pitcher. Start by preheating your container (we use a stoneware pitcher) with hot water from the tap... pour this water out and place tea bags in pitcher along with the tiniest pinch of salt (teeny tiny). Bring 8 cups of water to the boil and pour over tea bags. Allow to steep for 20 minutes. Remove tea bags (do not squeeze bags as this will lead to cloudy tea). Stir in one cup of pure cane sugar while tea is still hot. Add cool water to finish filling pitcher. Allow to cool at room temp.

Serve over ice with a sprig of fresh mint.

Mary Mahoney's report card

Yeaaa! The St. Patrick is my favorite dish there. So glad you enjoyed it! Is the giant oak tree still there?

Mary Mahoney's

Any of the seafood dishes- the St. Patrick was always my favorite... don't know if it is still on the menu or not. Shrimp, lumb crabmeat and a bit of spinach. Heaven!!

Mary Mahoney's

The one in Biloxi? FABULOUS!! You will love it. Drat. Now I am homesick. :-)


Look to west Knoxville for better restaurants, groceries and shops. Fresh Market is okay but Earth Fare is way better (IMHO). I have relatives who live in the area and they love the Sunspot restaurant.

Snapshots from New Orleans: Willie Mae's Fried Chicken Is Still Awesome

Willie Mae's ranks third on our list of favorite fried chicken places: #1 Gus' in Memphis, #2 Price's in Charlotte, NC and then Willie Mae's. :-)

Good eats in Charlotte, NC

Prices chicken for amazing fried chicken (a Charlotte institution), The McNinch House to be spoiled rotten, Upstream for wonderful seafood, Mert's Heart and Soul for Southern food, Fig Tree (try the bison short ribs- to die for), Beef and Bottle for steak... it depends on which part of the city you will be staying in and how far you are willing to drive.

Southern Themed Wedding Shower Ideas

It depends on if you want deep south food (Mississippi, Alabama, interior Georgia) or lowcountry food (costal Georgia and South Carolina).

For low country I would suggest benne wafers, homemade pimento cheese, shrimp served on grit cake canapes, hoppin john, she crab soup, a lady Baltimore cake, etc...

For deep south food I would go with black eyed pea cakes, roasted pecans, cheese straws, tomato pie (savory, not sweet), ambrosia, tiny biscuits served with homemade fig preserves or thinly sliced country ham, homemade pimento cheese, Lane cake and/ or red velvet cake.

Regional Chain Restaurants

Also, Dreamland barbecue in Alabama... pure Heaven!

@Pavlov, I agree with you on the Krystal burgers. Sometimes it just hits the spot (especially the double cheese Krystals).

Regional Chain Restaurants

Pollard's Chicken here in Virginia... multiple locations all serving above average fried chicken and homemade sides/ desserts. Can't hold a candle to Gus's (in TN) but, hey, it's a chain. Way better than the typical Popeyes/ Bojangles/ KFC. :-)

So what's the deal with MSG?

Oddly enough, I never have a problem with Chinese food and MSG. However, the two times I have been dragged by my pre-teen son to Uno Pizza and have had their soup I've experienced the worst migraines of my life. MSG or not it was horrid and I will not be returning... no matter how much the kiddo begs. lol

Starting another Chemo Thread

No advice (sorry). I just want to express my support. Hang in there. :-)

Destination-Worthy Milkshake: Braum's Black Walnut

My husband and I lived in Lawton, OK while he was stationed at Ft. Sill... the ONLY good thing about the town was Braum's. The 107 degree summers, tornadoes, and being in the middle of nowhere (closest Target was down in TX) was trying. Braum's ice cream, shakes and awesome dairy products (available in store in a little shopping area) made our stay there bearable.

Sandra Lee in the March issue of Vogue. Kill me now!

@AJ12754, you are right... 'The September Issue' was wonderful!

Sandra Lee in the March issue of Vogue. Kill me now!

Hi Adam! I know Anna Wintour is the editor and Mr. Steingarten is listed as the Features/ Food Critic. But, but, but... his column is missing this month. Ok, going to go make something from scratch now to appease myself.

Where should I eat in Richmond?

Here are a few that are vegan friendly and REALLY good. Also, if you are into Edgar Allan Poe be sure to swing by the Poe house/ museum- it is awesome. Have fun!

Ellwood's Cafe

Aziza's on Main

The Belvidere at Broad

What do I do with grits?

If you click on the link below and scroll down a bit there is a wonderful article by Robert St. John concerning grits. Growing up in Mississippi we would NEVER sweeten grits- that was always seen as a yankee affectation. :-)!.htm

Old Town Alexandria-Eats?

We are in Alexandria about once a month and our favorites are:

Eve and le Refuge for fine dining

Vaso's Kitchen (a bit out of the way but the BEST Greek food ever)

Hard Times Cafe for cheap eats (good chili)

Eamonn's for good fish and chips

Bittersweet for a quick breakfast

Have fun!!