What exactly makes a restaurant a “Hole in the wall”? First it needs to fit the criteria. Being small, local, and family owned is a great starting point. Being inconspicuous is a good trait; not some large chain restaurant we all know about. Finally, it needs to be unique and authentic. You really need to get a feeling that this is one of a kind and there is no other place like it on earth.
Oh, and we almost forgot the most important part, the food needs to be the star of the show. I am here to testify that Big Daddy’s Café checks all those boxes and then some. I am no stranger to Big Daddy’s Café. We used to make trips there when I went to college in JSU (back in the Nineties). I loved turning new friends on to my favorite Hole in the Wall and road tripping, eating, talking to Big Daddy himself. I’ll never forget the time he had a few steaks he marinated and cooked for us. Although he is no longer with us, the restaurant has always been a family affair and continues to be. It always reminded me of going and eating at my Mema’s house.
Recently had the chance to bring some new folks with me for lunch one day and it was just as delicious as I remember. On this day they had Salmon Patties as a featured menu item. Or as my MeMaw used to call them, Salmon Croquettes. They tasted like they were made with love and a cast iron skillet. Absolutely delicious! I honestly could have eaten at least five lol. For my two sides, I really enjoyed their deep-fried Onion Rings. These were not out of a bag but cut and hand battered. A nice helping of a squash casserole or stewed squash rounded out a perfect lunch. Washed it down with honestly the best Sweat Tea I have ever had in my life. Not sure what they’re doing special to that sweat tea, but it was amazing! The features or specials of the day were still written out on a flash card to go along with their regular menu. This was exactly the way it was done when we used to come in the college years and the décor had not changed too much either. As the saying goes “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. There is a reason it has not changed and has been open since 1969.
I certainly put Big Daddy’s Café as one of the TOP “Hole in the Wall’s” around and cannot wait to bring someone new to experience it, HIGHLY RECOMMEND!
*Pro Tip* Be sure to bring cash they do not currently accept cards.