As many of you know, I indulge myself on my blog by writing about whatever is uppermost on my mind. If you saw my facebook feed, you know I had a rather serious bike accident earlier this week. I became all confused and weird, for a little over an hour and then the confusion cleared up. The odd thing is that I remember part of the sensation of feeling confused and disoriented. The main thing that was worrying me was that I was supposed to leave for a press trip early the next day and I didn’t want to miss it.
Well, the Doc said I was okay to travel but to seek medical help if I noticed anything concerning. Hot dog.
But I was so worried that I might not wake up, that the CAT scan might have missed a deadly clot or brain cloud, that I didn’t sleep at all that night. The alarm went off at 4:15 and I hauled myself up. I was so banged up and sore, Jeff asked “Are you sure you really want to do this? Is Lubbock TX that important to you?”
I was sure. I want to establish myself as a travel writer so that I can visit venues to write about for my column, Americana.
I’m so glad I didn’t miss this trip. Lubbock TX may not seem like a glamorous place, but there are lots of fun and interesting things to do here and the real estate is CHEAP!
First off the food here has been amazing. Press trips always feed us to the exploding level, (I suppose I have some control over how much I eat, but when it’s so good, it’s hard to send it away unfinished.)
The first night at the Overton Hotel, there was a reception and welcome dinner. I ordered the Dr Pepper chicken. My next task is to try to imitate the recipe. It’s not as salty as teriaki but flavorful and unexpected. I don’t think I could have identified the Dr Pepper if it hadn’t been printed on the menu. Served with spinach and crispy potatoes.
This is a cream puff shell with something similar to pecan pie filling but not as custardy. It’s almost more like a candy. Wow.
The next morning, we started out at the National Ranching Heritage Center. I’m going to talk about this fascinating place in the travel piece I write for the Oklahoman, but the chuck wagon breakfast was delicious. The eggs were bacony. I chose the green chili type. YUM! I’m not a fan of biscuits and gravy, but if you are, you might have liked these dutch oven baked-to-perfection examples. The sticky pecan buns were amazing. Fresh from a dutch oven, gooey and warm. Oh my.
I enjoyed my salad and soup at the Crafthouse Gastropub, too. There was enough bread and cheese in the soup to make it quite filling and very flavorful. The salad was nice but not spectacular.
On to a fun visit to the museum at Texas Tech. Also to be covered in the travel article, but super interesting and a little bit of every sort of museum from art to natural history to ancient artifacts.
The windmill museum may sound a little kooky, but I loved it. Planning a column on just windmills. There’s a lot more to them than just being picturesque!
On to the Triple J Chophouse and Pub. The nachos appetizer would have been an abundant meal for two people. It’s delicious, but I saved some appetite for their tasty beer batter rolls and my main course of “campfire tips” with “sweet potato custard”. The beef was reminiscent of fajitas, but in bigger chunks of tender, nicely seasoned beef. The ‘custard’ was more like mashed sweet potato with sugar added. I liked it, but it was very sweet without any hint of milk or cream (that I could detect).
If the sticky buns for breakfast yesterday were the only dessert of the day, I more than made up for it today.
Breakfast at The Cast Iron Grill. If you go, be honest with yourself and go straight for the pie (or pah as it’s pronounced ’round these parts.)
Yeah, that’s banana Split Pie. But it’s better than a banana split with the strawberries balancing the banana on a graham cracker crust. I should edit out my lens cap, but you get the idea.
Fun things in between, more in the article and when we sat down next, it was to the best BBQ place I’ve ever eaten. I don’t make that statement lightly. I’ve eaten BBQ in Dallas and OKC and Kansas City and Charleston, SC, at all the iconic famous places and I’ve had some pretty darn good stuff. It’s not really the meat itself. The meat is as good as the best I’ve had with the exception of the ribs which were very fatty. The name of the place is Evie Mae’s and it’s just outside of Lubbock. Their promo said they cook over 700 pounds of meat each day and sell out by 2:00. I doubted until we arrived at 11:15 and the line was out the door.
You should have seen the glares we got as we breezed past the line to the reserved tables and the hosts immediately brought us heaping platters of meat and every single side on the menu! In about 3 seconds, I didn’t care about the hateful stares. Who am I to argue when my stomach is a VIP?
cheesy grits. YUMMY I should edit this to focus on the green chili cheddar corn muffin. I don’t know who had that idea, but they’ve ruined all other cornbread for me forever.
Coleslaw was competent, beans were flavorful, (both types) grits, delicious, baked potato salad, fabulous, brisket and turkey MMMMMMmmmmmMMMM. I didn’t photograph the piece of Texas sheet cake I ordered because it was just a flat hunk of very tasty cake. I did snap one of another offering. It’s sitting in a paper dish, so it looks like the crust is weird, but I hear it was good.
Lastly, we ate dinner at westtable kitchen (the server specified no caps in the name) The owner is a chef whose last name is West.
I wasn’t exactly famished, but the food was very tasty. It’s a modern, clean, upscale sort of place with the kitchen visible from the dining room. It’s fun to watch them prepare the food. The appetizer was fried okra but instead of coins it was halved lengthwise. I liked it that way. You get a higher proportion of the okra to the breading and you can actually taste the vegetable! The next is my neighbors house salad which was said to be very good but too big. The next is my lovely beat salad that was SO good. I admit it was a big portion but I polished it off. There was a little bit of bleu cheese crumbles to jazz it up. I’m seeing more and more yellow beets on menus. Next was my meal of fried chicken. I just wanted to be sure to get enough calories for the day, and figured what the heck. The champion of this plate is not the perfectly fried chicken, nor the al-dente greenbeans. It’s that little vessel of jalepeno and bacon sauce on the side. It’s not spicy, but SO flavorful. Last is my neighbor’s fish. It was a King something. A sort of fish that looks like an eel, but the flesh is meaty and mild tasting. She gave me a bite and I was impressed. The hushpuppies make a nice presentation, too.
So for all you foodies, that’s my gastronomical trip to Lubbock. Of course there were feasts for the mind and heart too, but those will find a few different venues. I’ll use the windmill museum and the Glider Pilot museum as well as the prairie dog park for Americana. The travel article will be about the fantastic concert at the Cactus Theater, and the other interesting places we visited.
I never expected to find Lubbock TX such a fun place with so many cultural, entertainment, and educational venues. I’m so glad the Doctor untied me from my hospital bed to come! I wonder if it’s medically concerning that I’ve gained 5 pounds in three days?Maybe I won’t wake up tomorrow.
Oh, but what a way to go.