Now THIS is comfort food


Momma's Boy French Toast

This past spring break, I went on a trip to visit universities along the eastern coast, specifically focusing on schools in the south.

The minute that I knew I was going, my mouth watered with the thought of grits, biscuits and fried green tomatoes. All of which, I knew, I would have to indulge in. Although all of the food I had the pleasure of eating was nothing short of scrumptious, I picked out my favorite meals or spots from each day that are a must try if you ever find yourself in one of these college towns.

Gainesville, Florida:

Gainesville itself is a nice town with interesting historic buildings and a plethora of restaurants ranging from barbecue to brunch. While spending my time strolling the pathways of the University of Florida, I craved a big brunch with all kinds of flavors and southern flare. Upon entering Daybreak, a quaint joint with a pronounced casual feel and plenty of customers sitting at picnic like tables, I was immediately excited to see the menu. Needless to say, I was not in the least bit disappointed.

My mom and I decided to share the “caveman cakes” with a side of veggie sausage and homemade grits. We also ordered the “veggie omelette.” The idea around these
“special pancakes” was that they were made with almond flour, extra protein and were paleo. They also happened to be the most expensive pancakes that I could have ordered. Oops! They tasted slightly grainy which made it evident that they weren’t your old run of the mill pancakes. They were unique, in the best way.

The omelette was light and fluffy and bursting with flavor. For me, at first, it was just a regular old omelette. Then, the sun dried tomato pesto found it’s way into my bite. It was the first I had ever heard of this special sauce in an omelette, and quite frankly, I was a huge fan. The basil added a note of extra flavor that’s almost indescribable, but for anyone who loves basil as much as I do, it was the ultimate addition. Delicious.  

Overall, this cozy brunch place was pricy but, the exploration of variations of foods I had never tried made it well worth it.

Athens, Georgia:

I don’t know where to begin with Athens.  Not only was it the most delightful southern town I had the pleasure of visiting, but the food, my gosh the food, was SO GOOD. I don’t know if it was the Athens charm, the southern flare, or my excitement to finally get to spend a day in Georgia, but my favorite restaurants were collectively in the lovely, Athens.

Choosing my absolute favorite was tough but, I have to say, after walking out of Mamma’s Boy, I felt as though I had ascended into food heaven. Of course that’s dramatic, but the biscuits were nothing like I had ever tried before. One could say they were “divine.”

Besides the decadent, flaky, fluffy, buttery, golden biscuits, I also ordered a decadent, fluffy, doughy, golden french toast. Points for staying healthy. Regardless of how healthy it was, the french toast was amazing. The combination of powdered sugar, berries and a soft bite of egg soaked bread was fantastic. My mom ordered the yogurt parfait with homemade granola which was, shockingly, utterly incredible.

Overall, this breakfast was the best breakfast I have had on any vacation in my entire life. It was that good. If you’re ever in Athens, I strongly recommend you go.

Columbia, South Carolina:

This next cafe might seem on the boring side relative to the monument that is Mamma’s Boy, but I assure you, the coffee was great. I picked Indah Coffee as my favorite place in South Carolina because it had a northeastern college town vibe while still existing in the south. For this particular reason, it felt homey to me and I enjoyed the time I spent there reflecting on the schools I had visited so far, while drinking my cappuccino with oat milk and picking apart a blueberry muffin.

There’s not much to say except the coffee was excellent and the pastries were a nice touch.

Charleston, South Carolina:

In Charleston, I went to a cute little hole in the wall joint called 167 Raw. Charleston is right on the water, which meant the fish was extremely fresh, and therefore, extremely delicious.

I ordered a tuna taco and an ahi poke. The fish was topped with beautiful greens and delicious sauces that culminated in a perfect meal full of flavor and, arguably the best fish, tuna. My mom had the tuna burger which she described as delicious.

This restaurant was small, but it’s flavors and creativity were big, making it a pleasurable experience to dine there. It’s the perfect way to end a day walking around the beautiful and colorful city of Charleston.

In conclusion, my trip to the south was most definitely full of the charm and southern flare I had hoped for, and some food which exceeded my expectations. I loved getting to try real southern biscuits and fresh fish from Charleston and would hands down return to any and all of the mentioned restaurants. I hope you get the chance to try them sometime as well.