My grandmother made what I considered to be the best food–always from scratch. My mother has some recipes she developed herself, which I still think are fabulous, but we both know nothing compares to Grandmother’s cooking.
Grandmother’s liver and onions, meatloaf and fried chicken still top my list of food for which I have not found an acceptable substitute. During the significant portions of my youth I spent living with Grandmother, I came to anticipate morning breakfasts of scrambled eggs, real bacon, toast and often her locally-famous biscuits and gravy.
None of this was on my mind as I made my over to the Maple Street Biscuit Company, a place about which I had heard good things. In the historic San Marco Square coming from I-95, Maple Street Biscuit Company will be on your right just past the San Marco Theater. With the resurgence of the Square and recent improvements on San Marco Boulevard, the returning excitement about San Marco may have you circling the Square a couple of times before finding a parking spot. There were already people inside awaiting orders when I stepped up to the counter a little after Maple Street opened for dinner at 5 pm.
“Amazing” is too simple a word to describe all the aspects of Maple Street Biscuit Company. The décor and ambiance make one very comfortable. The menus are on the wall near the counter where you order, and then you can choose from seats aligned along the counter or at one of the many tables, inside and out.
My friends had earlier suggested two items: the Five and Dime (a flaky biscuit, all-natural fried chicken, pecan wood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese topped with sausage gravy that has a little kick–plus a fried egg on top) priced at $8 and the Squawking Goat (again a flaky biscuit, all-natural fried chicken breast, and a fried goat cheese medallion with pepper jelly on top) priced at $7.50. I opted for both.
In lieu of giving you a number for your order, the cashier will ask you a question–mine was, “What is your dream vacation destination?”
As my food was placed in front of me, my preconceived notions about the menu vanished. I had assumed the portions would be small and that I would treat my selections as appetizers on my way to further food adventures. Wrong. I didn’t eat anything else the rest of the evening!
My first bite instantly brought Grandmother to mind–and a tear to my eye. The flavor and texture were very close to her biscuits. I had started with the Squawking Goat but was eyeing that Five and Dime, so I ended up switching my focus from plate to plate.
The sausage gravy was outstanding! The combination of delicious fried chicken and taste-bud pleasing pecan wood bacon with a “smathering” of the sausage gravy and egg yolk yielded a satisfying crescendo of flavors in that Cajun-girl mouth of mine.
Sitting next to me was Jean, who mentioned the macaroni and cheese at Maple Street Biscuit Company was the best she had tasted, including her own (which friends and family rave about). I went and got some for myself! I couldn’t hold off eating until the mac-n-cheese arrived, so I busied myself soppin’ up both plates until everything was entirely consumed. Once I took a bite of the mac-n-cheese, I decided the tip provided by Jean was spot on! Here is their menu description of this delectable dish: Smoky Mountain Mac-N-Cheese – Five cheese (including smoked Gouda) baked macaroni with cheese cracker crust – $4
Maple Street Biscuit Company serves breakfast and lunch six days a week, dinner on Fridays and Saturdays and is closed Sundays. Discard any perceptions of a “biscuit dinner”, and head over to Maple Street Biscuit Company for some larrupin’-good vittles! My grandmother would give her nod of approval.