Barbecue, grits and guacamole

Longtime friend Tony Barnhart of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution recently took a detour from college football to blog about another Southern staple, barbecue.

Also, the AJC recently did a treatise on grits, which still exists under the radar in California, where I lived for many years. But Barnhart cast his vote for a Greensboro, GA, eatery, and the AJC did not rank the Waffle House among the top purveyors of the hominy-based delicacy.

So I ask, does an individually owned restaurant have any kind of real advantage over a chain?

California certainly has many great Mexican restaurants. My favorite is the Old Town Mexican Cafe in San Diego, which allows people to actually view the tortillas being made. But I’ve also had many a tasty bargain enchilada at Acapulco, a widely known chain in that area.

Seems sometimes people want to overly romanticize a mom-and-pop type operation. Yes, they do have individual personalities and heritages. However, I say that alone does not make them better.

I personally think the Sonny’s restaurant chain does as good a job at barbecue as anyone. So sound off: What is your favorite for barbecue, and why? (And you can get Mexican if you want, too.)



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