Monday, May 28, 2012
Our second day of our dining local adventure began with a plethora of emails, Facebook comments and blog comments. What we learned immediately was that even defining “dining local” can be a challenge. For example, is dining at a franchise establishment owned by a local owner considered dining local? It would be easy to say that we will not dine at franchise restaurants, but what about local franchises such as Cups Espresso Coffee or McAlister’s Deli? And what if we buy something from a roadside vendor – bananas, for example – that is surely not local? Thus, we are at the point where we need to make some decisions.
First, locally-owned national franchises. Even though most of the profits may stay local – and even if the employees are contributing to the local economy – we are not going to include locally-owned franchises as part of our adventure. Sorry, Subway, McDonald’s, etc. We want to dine at establishments that are even more locally-owned. Second, if the franchise is a Mississippi franchise, we consider that to be locally-owned. So, Cups, Sweet Peppers Deli, Mugshots Grill & Bar, etc. you are in.
Today was easy as far as dining goes. We had breakfast at home (I make a mean Belgian waffle, with blueberries from Crystal Springs on top no less), lunch at River Hills Club, where we played in a Memorial Day tennis social tournament and a late afternoon frozen yogurt at Sweet Tree Yogurt in Ridgeland. It was a light dinner at home.
We are headed to the Mississippi Gulf Coast so it should be very easy to dine local unless… someone invites us out to dinner at a non-local place. So far, we are in good shape. We have a dinner invitation to dine at Mary Mahoney’s, which is about as local as one can get on the Coast. We did consider having dinner at Ruth’s Chris Steak House at the Hard Rock Biloxi on May 31, which is our wedding anniversary (number 32 – Boy how I love that woman), but then realized that it is not locally-owned.
A very special thanks to those of you who have offered suggestions on where to eat local in Mississippi. I had never heard of some of those places, and I look forward to paying them a visit.
So come back to this cyberspot every day or two to see how we are doing. We appreciate your comments and recommendations.