Lady and Sons - Savannah, GA

On our first trip to the beautiful city of Savannah, Georgia (one of my favorite cities in the South so far), we took some time to stop by one of the most well-known restaurants in the city, Lady and Sons. As everyone knows, the restaurant is owned by Paula Deen and her sons, and it offers everything you can imagine when you think of Paula Deen...plentiful and overflowing amounts of Southern dishes, which will leave you in a calorie and cholesterol-busting food coma. =)

I remember reading a review calling this place an American temple to gluttony - while I think that was a bit of an overstatement, the restaurant IS owned by Paula Deen (tons of butter in her recipes, and creator of the Lady's Brunch burger, the infamous burger made with two krispy kreme donuts instead of bread), and so if you go, are you REALLY expecting healthy salads and other light options? The southern food isn't the best I've had so far, but regardless of your expectations, I think this is one of those places that everyone should visit at least once, at least for the experience. Some people call this a tourist trap, but I think it really offers the kind of friendly, gut-busting food experience I think I might have if I went to Paula Deen's house and had a meal there, albeit in a gigantic three-story restaurant designed to hold every single tourist that visits Savannah (just kidding with that last comment. It is pretty big though).

So the first thing I learned about this restaurant is that Paula doesn't take reservations. Seriously? Well, that isn't quite can make reservations at the restaurant starting the morning of the day you want to eat, but not any earlier than that - there is a maitre'd that stands outside, and you make a reservation with them for either lunch or dinner (in the above photo, the stand where the person is located is on the left-hand side of the photo). On weekends, the line starts up at 8:00 in the morning for lunch and dinner spots, and gets pretty long. I actually ended up getting there late, at about 8:45 in the morning, and just barely got a table for 2 for 11:00 in the morning on the third floor of the restaurant (all the floors are the same, from what I can see - each floor has offers its own Southern food buffet area, and has lots of tables for people to sit at). From what I can remember, the dinner spots were equally as filled up by then.

So here was the 11:00 group - a whole lotta hungry people waiting for the restaurant to open. There were so many of us that they asked us to wait across the street!

Shortly before 11:00 am, this lady came out and literally rang the iron triangle to announce the opening of the restaurant for the day. Ahh, what a spectacle. =) She hollered at our group and asked all of us if we were ready to eat - after she rang the triangle, she got everyone so excited that I almost thought the group was going to run en masse straight for the doors in a gigantic mob...fortunately, the actual process is a LOT more organized.

So after the lady rang up her triangle, a matire'd came out and called each of the party's names. The whole process didn't take too long - we were towards the end of the group, and we ended up waiting about 10 minutes before our name was called.

So when you get seated, they immediately start plying you with food, starting with Paula's delicious cheese biscuits (sorry for the blurry picture). And yes, they will serve you as many as you want, for you biscuit gluttons out there.

In addition to the cheese biscuits, you also get served some hoecakes (basically cornmeal pancakes). They are made fresh - I watched as someone made fresh hoecakes at an area next to the buffet - and the hoecakes are delicious, but very filling.

Without really thinking about it, we ordered a fried green tomato appetizer (with an onion relish and a roasted red pepper sauce). Normally, we usually don't have a problem finishing off an appetizer and our main course, but not here. I think if I came back, I would not end up ordering an appetizer, not because it was bad, but because they offer so much food that it was really too much for just the two of us. The fried greens tomato dish iteslf was pretty good - a nice crunchy outside, although I wished the red pepper sauce had a little more punch.

Jen ordered a chicken pot pie for her main course. The top of the dish, the cross-hatched pie top that you see, was pretty intimidating when I first saw it - it is a super-buttery, and really flaky puff pastry pie top. The inside was pretty heavy and creamy, but definetly filled chock full of chicken and other vegetables.

I ordered the Southern all-you can-eat buffet, and it was definetly a treat. Although there wasn't any pulled pork bbq like what I have experienced in South Carolina, they had a whole lot of other food to compensate. This first photo of the buffet was my attempt to capture all the hot food they offered.

I loved this buffet - first of all, there were three types of chicken - fried chicken, baked chicken, and bbq chicken. Now that's what I'm talking about! =)
Lots of different typical Southern vegetable dishes - from left to right, creamed corn, collard greens, lima beans, black-eyed peas, and green beans.
On the right, they offered sweet candied yams (top), and mac and cheese (bottom).

Last, and definetly for this buffet, the least, was a slightly sad salad bar - the ingredients were fresh enough, but no one was eating from it - the salad was kind of like the ignored step-child of the buffet.

Here was one of the two plates of food I ate of the buffet - my favorite was the fried chicken. It wasn't the best I've had in the South so far (Palmetto Pig is my favorite), but it was juicy and crunchy, if a tiny bit too greasy for me. But the flavor was great. As for the rest of the food, everything was delicious and flavorful. I gotta admit, Paula does it well.

Lastly, dessert - a banana pudding. A nice ending, but I was seriously about to explode by the end of the meal - I don't remember a time where I was ever quite so full. Between the biscuits, hoecakes, appetizer, and buffet, I was seriously filled up to my absolute maximum. The walk we took afterwards around all the beautiful squares in Savannah's downtown was quite helpful. I didn't eat dinner that day because I was so full! But the food was good, and both of us definetly enjoyed ourselves. Thanks Paula and Sons!

Lady & Sons on Urbanspoon

No comments:

Post a Comment