‘Tis the season to pick strawberries. Last week I went headed to New Market with my friend and her almost three-year old to have a berry picking adventure. We went to North Alabama icon Brown’s Farm and it lived up to my high expectations. It had a restroom, very important when traveling with a toddler. That was our first stop. Our second stop was a cute, little cabin to buy jams, honey and to get our strawberry picking buckets. Buckets in hand and hats on head we headed to the fields and started eating… I mean gathering strawberries. Some of us were a bit better at collecting strawberries than others, but there was a particular member of our picking party that ate far more than he put in the bucket.Please note the very emptiness of his bucket! Eventually he realized that strawberry picking was very similar to Easter Egg hunting and got onboard. The fields were nice, accessible and the attendant pointed us the best section to pick berries.After buying store-bought berries I sometimes I forget how strawberries are supposed to taste: sweet and juicy with a hint of tartness at the very end. In other words perfection. We picked for about an hour and had three very full buckets of nature’s candy, but as it approach noon it got hot and we started to wither. We didn’t bring lunch with us, but the farm had a lovely covered picnic area.I fully planned to come up with a recipe for the strawberries but we ate them all before I had a chance. Sometimes it’s just best to eat them as is.
At the last leg of our food journey, we found ourselves at New Market BBQ. The restaurant is a red-roofed wooden building, surrounded by barrels of brightly colored flowers. It is the kind of place you see and you know immediately that you will be served excellent Barbecue, and I am glad to report the restaurant exceeded my high expectations.
When we arrived at the restaurant, the sky was quite ominous looking and storms were eminent, but this in no way unswayed the bbq lovers from coming out to New Market BBQ. The parking lot and restaurant was full of people who were more than willing to brave the rain and wind to get their pulled pork and brisket dinners.
The restaurant inside is rustic and fun, with lots to look at. Especially fun is owner Libby’s extensive pig collection. I have been to New Market BBQ on three previous occasions, and every time I go there I notice a new pig that I hadn’t seen before.
There aren’t tables, rather a bar that goes across the front of the restaurant. It creates an intimate environment allowing you to easily become friends with your neighbors. If you want a more secluded dinning experience, there is a pavilion with picnic tables adjacent to the restaurant.
At the heart of the restaurant is the smoker where all the magic happens. Kelly and Libby pride themselves in cooking all their meats the old-fashioned way, and this is what makes customers keep on coming back. The restaurant is open only 3 days a week and is full the entire three days. Cooking is a labor-intensive process and customers appreciate the time and effort that goes into it.
The rain finally started, but thankfully we were all cozy inside the dining area. We ordered our food, many of us taking forever (myself included) because there were so many delicious-sounding options.
Everyone was sharing their food, because it was all so good we needed to try everything. It was all great! After we had all eat past normal human consumption, we had (got to) pick out a dessert. There were SO many choices, pecan pie, coconut pie, Elvis cake, banana pudding, peanut butter pie, and on and on.