Top 5 Restaurants Worth The Drive
Gateway Macon's mission is to tell everyone about the Good Things that are going on in Macon. But it's more than that too, it's about our collective experience. Whether it's the Georgia National Fair going on in Perry, Road Trips to the many fine things the state of Georgia has to offer, or going to dine down in Mennonite Country, we at Gateway want to help you with that too. With that in mind, here are some fine places to eat, both hidden gems and generational family traditions, that are worth the drive.
1. French Market and Tavern - Locust Grove, Georgia
Just a short drive up I-75 North is the French Market and Tavern Located in historic Locust Grove, Ga. The owner of this establishment pays homage to the original French Market in New Orleans with a great menu served in a truly historic setting. The market aspect of this restaurant takes up the front portion of the building and offers a unique selection of gifts and notions perfect for the kitchen and dining room. Once you get past the shopping experience the dining experience is sure to please. New Orleans cuisine is The French Market's specialty with favorites like Brown Butter Gumbo, Craw-fish Etouffee and Creole Shrimp and Grits. Leave room for desert because they feature a desert case packed with homemade cakes and pies. Open for Lunch, Dinner and Brunch The French Market is a great stopping point on your way to or from Atlanta and it is close enough to be a new diversion from the traditional Macon, Ga. restaurant offerings.
2. Falls View Restaurant - Jackson, Georgia at High Falls State Park
Falls View Restaurant opened in 1969 and has been a Middle Georgia tradition ever since. This Gatekeeper remembers standing in line to get in when I was just 7 years old. The restaurant has expanded since then, so you're unlikley to have to wait outside, but the food is still worth the wait! Falls View Restaurant is known for their farm-raised catfish, but also serves a wide variety of other seafood including flounder (this Gatekeeper's choice), salmon, red snapper, mullet, oysters, scallops, crab, and shrimp scampi. Their hushpuppies are worth the price of admission. They also have black angus steak and chicken for the landlubbers, and a children's menu as well. Their strawberry shortcake is renown, and they offer several other desserts. They're only open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights, but this is appointment dining and worth the effort.
Falls View Restaurant overlooks the entry to High Falls State Park. Here you'll find camping, canoeing, hiking, mini-golf, and other outdoor activities. During the summer, the nearby High Falls Water Park provides a couple of waterslides and a pool to beat the heat. You can make a day of a visit to the area.
Thursday.............4pm to 8:30pm
Friday.................4pm to 9:30pm
Saturday.............4pm to 9:30pm
3. Yoder's Deitsch Haus Mennonite Restaurant - Montezuma, Georgia
Those Mennonites in Montezuma are a shrewd bunch. You can't just walk into their restaurant. Oh no. You have to enter through their bakery, which is totally unfair. If you get out of there without buying some fresh bread or dessert or pastery, you're made of sterner stuff than we are. After you've passed through the bakery, you'll enter their cafeteria. The menu changes day to day, offering such southern favorites as meatloaf, fried okra, and turnip greens. They also have distinctive dishes like shredded ham with a pineapple glaze. Slices of pie and cake are offered for desert including the southern favorite red velvet cake. Whole pies and cakes are offered in the bakery. Did we mention those Mennonites know how to bake?
(Photo Credit: Yelp)
Monday & Tuesday lunch and dinner: 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-8:30 p.m.
Wednesday lunch only: 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m.
Thursday-Saturday lunch and dinner: 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5-8:30 p.m.
NOTE: Yoder's occasionally closes without notice. If you're going to make the drive, it's probably a good idea to call and make sure they're open.
4. Grits Cafe - Forsyth Georgia
Grits Cafe is one of those rare finds that once you have tried it you can't help but compare it to some of the finer dining options in big cities like Atlanta. Located just 15 mins from Macon, GA. this restaurant is a culinary delight where the chef takes pride in every dish offered. While the menu items do not sound overly complicated or fancy the attention to detail and quality of ingredients is evident in bite. Located in the historic square directly across from the Forsyth, Ga. Courthouse, Grits Cafe is a convenient and causal dining option that never disappoints. The dining area is cozy and unpretentious, the bar is well stock and OMG the food is always absolutely delicious. Grits Cafe is open for Lunch and dinner, but it is best to check their website for dining hours as well as check on the menu which is seasonal and is updated often.
5. Buckner's Family Restaurant
Buckner's Family Restaurant, open since 1980, serves all their food family style at tables that seat 6-10 people, with the food on a lazy susan in the middle of the table. The food is all you can eat, and the menu changes from day to day, including all the southern favorites: fried chicken, BBQ baby back ribs, roast beef and steak and gravy. Fresh southern vegetables round out the menu: potatoes, cabbage, brunswick stew, peas and beans, cole slaw, rolls and cornbread, and as much peach cobbler as you care to put away.