Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Martha Lou's


I love to read and just recently read The Hurricane Sisters by Dorothea Benton Frank. All of her books are good and I think you would love this one. Now, this is not a book review, but I just had to tell you a little bit about it. It was a very good read and an interesting lunch came out of it. Oh, you must know that Dorothea writes about Charleston and Sullivan's Island, South Carolina, where she grew up.

In the beginning of the story, Liz, Maisie's daughter, is bailing 80-year-old Maisie out of jail for walking a llama down Hwy 17. Maisie was arrested for animal cruelty, endangerment, and reckless behavior, even though she had the llama on a leash. The police put the llama in the dog catcher's pen and now Liz and her husband have to go get the caretaker from the farm because the llama is spitting on everyone.

I laughed out loud, when I read that page. It hooked me and I couldn't put the book down. The interesting lunch came about because in the book, Liz meets a friend for lunch at a restaurant in Charleston, SC called Martha Lou's.

This is what Liz said about Martha Lou's ......"Martha Lou's was one of those places you'd only know about if you were from Charleston or if a local took you there. The location was in, how do we say this diplomatically, a reemerging neighborhood. The building was as pink as a bottle of Pepto-Bismol featuring a sort of fabulous fish mural on the exterior wall, and the interior decor was a little to the left of chic. That said, you'd never put a better piece of fried chicken in your mouth. It was authentic, down-home, southern flare with no highfalutin nonsense."

Well, I had to know if this restaurant was real, so I googled it. Lo and behold, it was. And the picture on the website was just as Dorothea and Liz described it in The Hurricane Sisters. That meant one thing....I had to go. I told Cliff about it and the next thing I know, he planned a meeting with a friend from Charleston and we headed down for lunch, yesterday.

Liz mentioned that Debra, Martha Lou's daughter, was their waitress. So, I had to assume Debra was real, also. Sure enough, Debra IS Martha Lou's daughter and works at the restaurant, too.

I took my copy of The Hurricane Sisters hoping to get an autograph from Martha Lou. Unfortunately, she was not there yesterday during our lunch, but Debra was and she was delighted to sign my copy of the book.

What a fun adventure!


 Martha Lou's Restaurant

 This is Martha Lou. 
I took a picture of a framed photo in the restaurant. 

And, this is Debra. She was a hoot.

She was delighted to sign my copy of The Hurricane Sisters. 

As best as I can make out, it says....
"Debra Wally, much love to ya."

If you want to know more about this Southern soul food kitchen, go to marthalouskitchen.com. Or, if you're ever in Charleston, you'll have to stop by for lunch. I had the fried chicken and it was as good as I have ever had....so were the collards, corn bread and macaroni and cheese. 

Of course Cliff had a little to say....

Cliff said, "I want to order a round of chitterlings for everyone". 

Debra said, "I'm so sorry, we don't have any today. I have some in a bucket out back that I need to clean, but it could take 45 minutes to 2 hours and I just don't have time right now to clean them."
  
In my mind, I said, "Thank God, because ewwwww! I will never eat those."

Later,
Laurie

30 comments:

  1. How cool is this? I bet you were so psyched!
    We are heading to the coast in March for a short weekend. Cant wait!
    Lisa

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    1. I was! I felt like I met a celebrity. Lol! Well, she really is, I guess. You and your hubby will have to make the trip down to Charleston and have lunch there, when you come to MB. Soul good!

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  2. How fun! I, too, am a fan of Dorothea Benton Frank. Her descriptions of "your" area are so enticing. I'll have to check out "The Hurricane Sisters."

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    1. She knows the place and can describe it so well. For me, living here and knowing about so many of the places she writes about just doubles the pleasure of reading her books. Yes, you have to read this one!

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  3. I love a good read where you read something and just have to laugh out loud!
    What a great place for lunch and how much fun to meet Debra!
    I laugh at your 'Cliff said....' moments - what a hoot!

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    1. I know what you mean, Christine. I think I've laughed at every book of hers that I've read. She's got that knack. Meeting Debra was the highlight of my week. She was really fun. And yes, that Cliff of mine is a big hoot!

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  4. Fun fun fun..memorable..I love those types of Southern books:)
    Pat Conroy..:)♥

    he is my very favorite..was..and is.

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    1. Oh yeah, I remember you loving Pat Conroy. I liked him too. So sad that he's gone and we won't read any more of his books. But, I bet you would like Dorothea Benton Frank. She writes from a truly southern experience.

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  5. Well, how fun is that! The food sounds wonderful and the experience even better!

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    1. It was fun! I've been put on notice by our friend to find another cool place for our next lunch. It's not a place you would want to eat at often because I know that style of cooking is just not the healthiest. But for an occasional treat....Martha Lou's soul food was out of this world. Good thing I don't live close. I would be making excuses to go have her fried chicken often. Lol!!

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  6. What a great story you tell. My mouth is still watering for that chicken (but not the chittlins)!

    Jim Fowler, Greenville, SC
    www.jfowlerphotography.com

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    1. Oh, that chicken was so good, Jim. But yeah, I'm with you on the chittlins! Next time you go to the Francis Marion Natinal Forest, you'll have to drive on over to Martha Lou's.

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  7. My mouth is watering thinking of that amazing fried chicken and mac and cheese, oh my! But I have no idea what a chitterling is, and it sounds like I don't want to!!

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    1. Lol! You definitely don't want to eat chitterlings. It's pig intestines. YUCK!!! Well, I say YUCK, but I've never eaten them and never will. That's one southern delicacy that is pure shameful. Lol!!

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  8. Fun!! That's one of the books on my "to read" list.

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    1. You'll love it! I'll save it for you.

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  9. Oh, Laurie, that is the best story ever!! The one of you tracking that place down and Cliff plotting a trip!! I'm going to put that book on my must read list! THANK YOU!! Love that y'all are such fun adventure -ers! blessings and hugs ~ tanna

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    1. LaurieFebruary 23, 2017 at 7:40 PM
      Ahhh, thank you Tanna! Cliff is such a good sport in my adventures. We make a good team. Oh good, I hope you like the book as much as I did. You'll have to let me know.

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  10. What a great post Laurie!
    Not sure about the chitterlings though!
    We have been to Charleston and especially enjoyed Bewford!(sp)
    No rain here today...but, plenty of black clouds!
    Enjoy your evening...
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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    1. Thanks, Linda! Don't eat chitterlings! Pig intestines...gross and unhealthy on many levels.

      I think you are speaking of Beaufort. Cliff has a kayak race there in a couple of weeks. It's a beautiful, quaint town. I may go down there with him. I'll take pictures if I do.

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    2. Yes...that was it! Lovely place. Hope you go with him...fun to get away...

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    1. It was, Nancy. I love our little adventures.

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  12. How fun to have your literature come to life! We recently ate at Rosy's Diner in Escanaba, Michigan... as seen in the film Escanaba in da Moonlight. We didn't meet Rosy, but our waitress's mother was in the film as "Boring Cathy." lol.

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  13. Oh, this is wonderful! So glad you got your book signed, too! <3 Karen

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  14. I love this. We live next to 30 llamas.

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  15. You are a hoot...but I would have done the exact thing. When the movie Terms of Endearment came out. I drove around and around the neighborhood where it was filmed until I found the street and two house. My poor kids were along and they still tell the story.

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  16. So cool!! I like it already when I can walk around a city or a neighbourhood described in a book I have read, but to actually meet one of the characters is much better! It was a great idea to go there.

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    1. Thanks, Sara! Yes, it was the highlight of my week to meet Debra. It just makes the story more real somehow.

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