Readers, I spent the month of October in my car.
Well, sort of. I took a gigantic driving road trip from New Jersey to Texas and back. Here was my entire route if you’re curious. Why? Well, I love road trips. It’s a great way to see a country, it’s a great way to visit friends and family, and it can be a surprisingly inexpensive way to travel.
And on this road trip, I visited thirteen cities across twelve states, I caught up with a ton of family and friends across the Midwest and South (including a fellow food blogger and two long-time school friends who I hadn’t seen in over a decade), and I re-reminded myself of how lucky I am to live such a huge, diverse and amazing country. In total, I drove some 4,500 miles over three weeks.
Today’s post is just a light one where I’ll share some of the highlights of my trip.
Best meal: A tough choice, but I’m calling it a tie between Rolf and Daughters, a really good farm-to-table style foodie restaurant in downtown Nashville, and Pizzitola’s, an inexpensive old-school BBQ joint in central Houston. These two restaurants simply blew away the field and I highly recommend both.
Best deal: $3.99 for a one pound bag of ground cumin. This could be the best price I've ever paid for any spice, ever. At “Nuestra Familia” grocery store in Omaha, Nebraska. This is how you defeat the spice cabal!
Weirdest food: Deep Fried Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. At the Texas State Fair, in Dallas, Texas. It really messed with my mind to eat this “food” but in reality it was... good. I feel a post coming on just to try to process this indescribable culinary experience. Bonus: I was full for the rest of the day.
Apropos of nada, here’s what a half-eaten deep fried Oreo cookie looks like:
Cheapest gas: $2.89/gallon in Sioux City, IA. Hey, ethanol subsidies, man.
Best restaurant deal: Madras Restaurant, in Austin, Texas. Just $10 at lunchtime for all-you-can-eat vegetarian Indian food. Really, really good. They didn’t make any money on me that day, I can tell you that.
Best hipsters: Austin. Not even a question.
Worst traffic: Texas was the runaway winner here. The traffic in Houston and Dallas is worse than anything we’ve got here in the NJ/NYC metro area. PS: That state is booming.
New states checked off: OK, KS, NE, IA (now I’ve been to 40 states, leaving me yet to see AK, WA, OR, ID, MT, MN, WY, WI, SD, and ND ).
Least expected place where I had to speak Spanish: South Sioux City, Nebraska, in a tiny little restaurant called La Guadalupana. There was some confusion about my friend’s order, and since nobody in the restaurant spoke English, I had to step in and whip out my Spanish to help out.
Readers: Have you ever taken a road trip? Or would you like to? Where?
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