Tasting Thomasville: Sweet Grass Dairy and Fallin’s Barbeque


How about another peek into the local eatery options in our new hometown?

Cheese, Please!

One fall Friday night we walked downtown for dinner and found ourselves at Sweet Grass Dairy’s Cheese Shop. I’d purchased a Groupon for Blue Coop, their sister shop, but the coop had, er, flown by this point–first temporarily closed for renovations, then permanently as the Cheese Shop decided to relocate down Broad Street a bit for larger digs. The Cheese Shop was honoring the Coop’s offer, though, so we took advantage of some seats at the large central table and ordered up.

As the name implies, Sweet Grass Dairy is a local dairy creating delectable cheeses and sells cheese and charcuterie from their deli case as well as serving up sandwiches, salads, and tasting flights. (Check out their menu online.)

Sweet Grass Dairy | Taste of Thomasville

Sweet Grass Dairy | Taste of Thomasville

We started with the Taste of Thomasville cheese flight: 3 local cheeses (this time Lil’ Moo, Thomasville Tomme, and Asher Blue) paired with pecans, preserves, pickles, and crackers. Bonus points to Sweet Grass for having gluten-free crackers available. It was all delicious (I mean, really, it’s hard to go wrong with cheeses) but it’s hard to top the Lil’ Moo for a rich, creamy, spreadable cheese. If you enjoy Boursin, this would be right up your alley.

Sweet Grass Dairy | The Nola

Sweet Grass Dairy | The Nola

For dinner I ordered The Nola–Sweet Grass’s version of the classic New Orleans muffuletta–on a gluten free roll. Of the side options I chose the spinach, which came lightly dressed with olive oil and Parmesan cheese. It would certainly sate a craving for the original but in our informal game of who ordered better, I think Todd won this round.

Sweet Grass Dairy | The Pickled Pig

Sweet Grass Dairy | The Pickled Pig

Choosing the Pickled Pig was a bit of a surprise: it includes green tomato relish and Todd isn’t a big fan of anything pickled. Surprising both of us, the relish was sweet and went so well with the Tomme and Prosciutto! It’s a great combination and will be top of my list next time we stop in for a meal.

This was back at their older, smaller location and, while it was certainly charming, it tended to get very loud very fast, so I’m looking forward to seeing how the new space improves upon the ambiance of the shop.

Falling for Fallin’s 

It had been one of those days, a mid-week slump that led to a whole lotta ‘I’m-not-cooking’ setting in once we got home. A day where a bit of comfort food would not go amiss, and that’s how we ended up trying Fallin’s Barbeque for the first time. Their menu is fairly simple and straightforward, but it was a little lacking in combo plates or samplers. Call it a penchant for grazing or just the inability to make up my mind, but I like to try more than one offering, especially at a barbeque place.

Fallin's Barbeque | Baby Bear (the meats)

Fallin’s Barbeque | Baby Bear (the meats)

Fallin's Barbeque | Baby Bear (the sides)

Fallin’s Barbeque | Baby Bear (the sides)

So I ordered the Baby Bear (which is described as feeding 2-3) and asked for a to-go box immediately so I wouldn’t be tempted to eat too much. Because it was all so very good. The ribs were tender without being greasy, the chicken breast–frequently the driest of all the options on a bbq menu–was moist, practically succulent! The pulled pork is always a reliable option and when I say it was just okay, it’s not to say that it was lackluster in any way, just that it paled in comparison to the melt-in-your mouth beef brisket.

Fallin's Barbecue | THe Mama Bear

Fallin’s Barbecue | THe Mama Bear

Even though we got the next size up sampler (the Mama Bear) on our next visit (and had to convince the waitress that yes, we knew how much food it would be and that we were looking forward to bringing leftovers home), if I had to choose only one meat at Fallin’s it would be the brisket.

Fallin's Barbeque | The Big Joe with Brunswick Stew

Fallin’s Barbeque | The Big Joe with Brunswick Stew

Which brings us back to our first visit, where Todd ordered the Big Joe sandwich–that aforementioned amazing brisket topped with cheese and an onion ring. It looked fabulous, and Fallin’s seams to do a decent trade in a variety of sandwiches. And how can you not love a restaurant that list dog bones to go? And another plus for Fallin’s: you don’t smell like a bonfire when you leave, unlike the other place we tried a few months back.

Tasting Thomasville: Old Mexico and Granddaddy’s Barbeque

Tuesday Revews-Day

Continuing on our search for staple restaurants in our new town, the next box to check was Mexican!

Todd and I had our first date at a Mexican restaurant. Six years later we brought our families to that same restaurant for our rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding. We have a few favorite places in Tallahassee (La Fiesta, El Jalisco, Morelia) and several places we’ll not step foot in again. We take our enjoyment of Mexican food seriously, is what I’m trying to say.

Old Mexico is located downtown, on North Broad Street, so is walkable when the weather is nice. It was sweltering when we visited back in June, so we drove to avoid harshing the promise of a Margarita with heat stroke! It’s a bit dim inside of Old Mexico, and like a lot of large, boxy spaces the noise level can get pretty high, but that’s not something that bothers us in general.

They put their drinks on the front/cover of the menu–a fact I had not figured out when I was trying to figure out what types of Margaritas they had. Instead, I just ordered my usual: on the rocks, with salt, large! Now, when I said large I suppose I was expecting a double. Something along the mug size that other places have. Old Mexico’s large Margarita is the size of my head and not watered down like a lot of the fishbowl drinks you get at happy hour specials in Tallahassee.

Pardon the low-lit grainy shot: combo of dim restaurant and my previous phone's habit of adding extra shadow to front-facing pics!

Pardon the low-lit grainy shot: combo of dim restaurant and my previous phone’s habit of adding extra shadow to front-facing pics!

I’m sad to say that I couldn’t get anywhere close to finishing it, but I gave it a good, Dollhouse try!

Todd’s regular-sized strawberry daiquiri was large enough on its own, so I’ll still with that size unless I know I’m gonna be there a while!

Onto the food:


I am a big fan of chiles rellenos and it’s sort of my litmus test at any new Mexican place I try. I was a bit surprised that they were round, but they tasted amazing (and, no, it wasn’t the Margarita tasting for me). (Yes, there was the usual flour breading on them, I ate some of it–again, knowing my personal FODMAP limits helps me work around these sorts of situations–but also left some of the breading behind. It was worth it.) We’d also ordered a tamale–another good indicator of overall quality–and it was just as amazing as the rellenos.


Todd was just as enamored of his meal (burrito platter that he’d already tucked into before I got a picture), so I think we’ll definitely be going back. After all, he didn’t get a chance to try their flan, yet!

A few weeks later we were pondering our options and decided to try out the local bbq scene. Now, in Tallahassee, local chain Sonny’s is nice and reliable and they do have a location in Thomasville, so we could have always gone there. But where’s the fun in that?! Instead, we tried a place some of Todd’s coworkers liked, Granddaddy’s Barbeque.

It’s rather informal inside: you order at the counter and they call your name when you’re order is ready for pick-up. One thing that puzzled us about their menu was that you could get the trio combo of chicken, ribs, and pork for less than the Pick 2 combo… Not really much deliberation went on after seeing that, as we both got the trio to get the best idea of what this place was all about.


Indulgence in the name of research. Honest.

For sides (ahem, “trimmins”) Todd ordered the Brunswick Stew and the Mac & Cheese, while I got the coleslaw and fries. The one thing this place was missing was wet-naps on the self-serve station or the tables: this is messy eating! And you’ll smell like smoke (meat smoke, not cigarette smoke–even if Georgia does still allow smoking sections in their restaurants) when you leave. But these are not necessarily bad things.


The ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender, if a little fatty on our visit. The chicken was surprisingly moist, and the pulled pork was tasty, though not my favorite of the three. Todd was a fan of the Brunswick Stew but said the Mac & Cheese tasted like your typical Velveeta mix, nothing special there.

I have a feeling we might order their Family Pack or Plantation Platter for the next gaming night as it seems about right for sharing with fellow carnivores. For our next visit I’ll scale back my order to maybe their loaded nachos with chicken or pork, and there’s still the smoked turkey and brisket to try.

Of course, there’s more than one local bbq place in town, so who knows, Granddaddy’s might have some competition for our favorite. That remains to be seen!

Next time on Tasting Thomasville: frozen treats and a Greek-Southern fusion that really hits the spot (and tugs on the heartstrings).

That’s a White Sauce of a Different Flavor!


Up until recently, I thought of white sauce in two ways: Bechamel and Veloute.

This past month, though, I’ve encountered a different sort of white sauce  on two separate occasions and I’m thrilled with this new addition: White Barbecue Sauce.

Unlike traditional white sauces which start with a roux and are thinned by either milk or stock, this white sauce has a totally different base: mayonnaise.

And I adore mayonnaise.

It all seems to have started in Decatur, Alabama, at Big Bob Gibson’s Bar-B-Q and several versions of the recipe are available online. For those who dislike the gloopy, giggly texture of my favorite emulsion, have no fear as this spicy sauce is thinned to the consistency of heavy cream or ranch dressing. And, sure, mayo ins’t the healthiest food ever, but it’s a condiment–a little goes a long way!

To make your own, you’ll spice the mayonnaise of your choice with horseradish, black and cayenne peppers, adding sugar or corn syrup if you prefer a little sweet in your spice, and thinning with vinegar (white or apple cider seems to be the most common) or water to the desired consistency.

I’ve had this, now, on both pork and chicken and it’s been amazing on each. We’re planning to barbecue for this year’s Pumpkin Party and this might need to be available as a topping option!

Have you ever tried White Barbecue Sauce–what did you think of it?

Random Appetites: Bono’s Barbecue


Bono’s Put Bar-B-Q
Locations in Florida and Colorado

The second husband introduced me to Bono’s in Gainesville on one of our trips down to Orlando and I have to say that might just be one of the best things to come out of that marriage 😉

I was told they had the best smoked turkey. Ever. And I was told right. Most smoked turkey breast tends to be kinda dry, at least in my experience. Not Bono’s. I don’t know how they do it (I suspect a deal with some dark overlord), but their turkey breast is moist and flavorful, you don’t even need any sauce!

But speaking of sauces, there’s another stand-out in the Bono’s smoke pit: the Mustard sauce. Technically known as the Original 1949 Sauce, this mustard sauce is the tops, be all end all of meat condiments.

Granted, they also offer pork (tasty), chicken (standard) and beef (can be dry, needs the sauce!) along with 3 other sauces in their stable: Sweet & Tangy, Hickory Red and Smokin’ Pit Hot sauces are all available to try and bring home in bottles behind the register. Next to the mustard I’m partial to their sweet sauce, as I am with most places, but usually don’t even bother when the beloved Mustard sauce is on the table.

Side dishes range from green beans redolent with bacon (very salty so it might actually be salt pork instead of bacon), the usual fries, sweet potatoes and (Todd’s favorite) the deep-fried corn on the cob. I’ve also ordered their potato salad (which is the only side not made on the premises, according to our waitress)  and their squash casserole.

Now, at every barbecue some rain must fall. There have been a few less-than-stellar experiences at Bono’s. As I hinted above, the smoked beef was rather dry on our last visit (both Todd and I ordered it with similar results) and their Texas toast is often similarly dry (I like mine with penty of garlic butter, thank you very much, and last time there was almost no butter and definitely no garlic!). But probably the worst item we’ve ever had there were their onion rings. It’s sad, right: how can you screw up onion rings? I’m afraid they did, though. While nice and large (always a good start) they were coated with such a load of heavy, caked-on, barely seasoned batter which made the size overwhelming, and not in a good way. The sauce they came with was good, though.

So if you find yourself in one of the many cities along the Florida east coast (or Gainesville, or, you know, Colorado?) with a Bono’s and you want some good smoked turkey, Bono’s is the place to try! And if anyone is brave enough to order the “Hawg Size” portion of one of their plates, please take a picture and send it to me!