Monday, May 2, 2011

Savannah Day 3 - Paula Deen's (!) and a Trolley Tour

I was one lucky lady on our last day in Savannah because I did not have to wake up early but still got reservations at Paula Deen's The Lady and Sons.

Paula and I!
Not because it was a quiet day, because as you can see in the photo below, the place was packed.  Rather, Nick got up and was in line at 8:30am in order to make reservations that they don't start taking until 9:30am - that is how crazy it gets down there!

Crowd getting ready...

At 11:00, the time of our reservation, a women they affectionately nicknamed "Jelly Roll" comes out and goes crazy ringing the bell to let everyone know it is time to start digging in.  Then, one by one they call the names of the parties and send you in.

Nick and I were sat at a table for 2 on the first floor and almost immediately we were greeted by our super friendly waitress, who I think definitely threw a few extras "y'alls" into her sentences, and ordered some drinks while we reviewed the lunch menu.  At the same time there was a server who met each table and served them a Hoe Cake and a Cheddar biscuit. 

Who needs a bread basket??
The Cheddar biscuit was delicious - so light and fluffy, and much more so than the ones in the cardboard tube I have in my fridge.  The hoe cake was unreal - it is a pancake that actually has a bit of cornmeal in the batter and is cooked in a cast iron skillet with loads of butter.  After topping it off with a little syrup, I was wondering if the food could get any better!

After reviewing the menu we decided to go for the buffet rather than a lunch meal - really, the selections were rather limited and for a dollar more you could get the buffet, which had too many tempting choices and included dessert!  So, off we went.

The Buffet
The buffet was packed with fried chicken, baked chicken, pulled pork, mac and cheese, lima beans, brown eyed peas, zucchini casserole, mashed potatoes, corn bread and gravy, yams, creamed corn, collards and green beans.  The selections were endless.

Nick had a pretty good strategy going into the buffet: he got a few items to try with the expectation of going back up to try some others.

Nick's Plate
I on the other had had a terrible strategy at the buffet.  I just got a little over excited and went for everything on one plate.  As you can see, anything I wanted I grabbed and started piling things up, even though I do not like having things really touch or piled.  I started to panic a bit, but could not stop.  

My loaded plate
Everything was delicious, however the fried chicken was absolutely incredible.  The crusty batter on the outside had such a great flavor and the chicken was moist and delicious.  I had one piece but could have gone up for seconds or thirds!  The pulled pork was another favorite.  Again the meat was cooked perfectly and the the BBQ sauce was so tasty!

Finally they brought out a selection of desserts for us to choose, which included banana pudding, peach cobbler and sweet potato gooey butter cake. 

Even though we were stuffed, the portion was perfect for just a little taste - how do you go all the way there and not sample the dessert?!

To be honest I was skeptical of the Lady and Sons because I was worried that everyone (myself included) had built it up too much, but this was not the case at all.  The food was really that good and totally worth waiting in line to make a reservation.  While you are there you must take a peek at her store, where you can find all sorts of fun stuff to buy and take home in order to pretend that you are Paula Deen herself (get your butter ready!)

After a big lunch at Paula Deen's we went on one of the Oglethorpe Trolley Tours.  Like the trolleys here in Boston, they take you all over the city, giving you the history of the area and allowing you to pop on and off as you please.  With the trolley tour we went further into the city than we had before. 

One of the fun things we saw on the tour was Jim Williams' mansion.  If you are not familiar with the name in the particular, you may know the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, in which Jim Williams is the main character.  The house is beautiful and was one of my favorites that we saw.  I definitely want to watch the movie again to see it since they filmed on site.

Jim Williams House
Another fun thing we saw was the Waving Girl statue.  Turns out the waving girl was the sister of the lighthouse keeper and waved to all the ships that came in and out of the harbor.  After many years of waving to the sailors, they wanted to her to know how much they appreciated it so they sent letters to her.  Since they did not know her name they addressed them simply to "The Waving Girl."

Waving Girl
Last but not least we headed to Forsyth Park, which is a 20 acre park in the historic district of Savannah - the park with large fountain.

Forsyth Park
The park was one the places we jumped off the tour and walked around.  The area was beautiful - lots of lovely landscaping and benches to sit and relax.  While at the fountain taking pictures, Nick was asked by a couple to take theirs and right as he looked up, the guy actually got down on one knee and proposed!  Talk about high-pressure picture taking!

All in all, I would highly recommend Savannah as a great destination for a getaway.  The Historic District is just the right size, so you can go see the sites and still have plenty of time to relax.  For us, while it is was cold and rainy in Boston, Savannah was sunny and 85 - a nice break from the chilly spring we've been having.

Bottom line - need a long weekend?  Savannah is perfect!

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