With a reputation that includes titles such as the "Pie Guy" and "The Man Who Made 100 Different Pies in One Night," it's no great surprise that Chris Monroe—a dedicated pie lover and enthusiast—runs Hunka Pie. Open since 2007, the restaurant is dedicated to small-batch and handcrafted pies that boast flaky, hand-rolled crusts and are made without the preservatives found in big-batch bakeries. Equipped with the childhood pie memories and experience of growing up with three generations of pie makers, Chris claims the "largest selection of handcrafted pie in Arkansas." And judging from his list, he may be right. Interesting flavors such as chocolate hazelnut baklava and peach with rum glaze pop out alongside classic combinations such as southern pecan and key lime.
But though Chris and Hunka Pie specialize in pie, they also bring their A-game to breakfast, lunch, and dinner food, as well. They tout classic and creative burgers made with a third-pound of ground beef, some seasoned with secret spices, and others with more exotic flavors. The bombay burger adds garam masala to the mix, and the turkey burger's patty is seasoned with herbs. And though the restaurant was once relegated to a small drive-in counter, the restaurant's new digs invite patrons to sit and relax in the classic chrome and red of a former diner.
Armed with just a single, generations-old cookie recipe, Great American Cookies opened its first store in 1977, and the rest is history. Today, the franchise boasts locations in malls across the country and nabbed a coveted spot on Entrepreneur magazine’s 2012 Top 500 Franchises in the baked-goods category. As the shop’s reputation grew, so did its menu as chefs churned out a mouthwatering roster of gourmet-cookie recipes, each created and carefully tested in Atlanta. The tempting options now include snickerdoodle, peanut butter with M&Ms, and chewy pecan supreme, as well as freshly baked fudge and cheesecake brownies, and cookie sandwiches stuffed with frosting. The real show-stoppers, however, are the giant chocolate-chip cookie cakes, which can be customized with sweet, celebratory messages or shopping lists penned in colorful icing.
Alongside Highway 1 in Baja, California, waves lap up against the white sand beaches as drivers stop to snack on the region’s famous fish tacos. One such beach, the fabled Playa Costa Azul, inspired the chefs and creators behind Blue Coast Burrito. Baja-style fish, spicy LaTinga chicken, carnitas, pulled pork, and fresh veggies complete the burritos, tacos, and taco salads, all of which you can build to order. After grabbing some freshly made pico de gallo, sour cream, and tomatillo salsa, enjoy the mellow coastal vibe induced by surfboards hanging on the wall and a soundtrack of mellow beach tunes from Santana, the Gipsy Kings, and Los Lonely Boys.
Curry in a Hurry invites hungry guests to slow down and taste from an ample menu of classic Indian cuisine. The vibrant menu presents a range of colorful dishes, many of which roast in a clay tandoor oven to achieve their ideal level of succulence—chunks of lamb and beef kebab, to name just two. This eatery—like King Edward the Confessor—is named after its core competency, but it also barbecues many of its cuisines. Mounds of tomato curry can join plates already bursting with lentils, potatoes, or cauliflower. The kitchen team also dresses many of its creations in thoughtful combinations of exotic spices, and their naan adorned with garlic or spinach can complement any entree.
Though the entrees at The Dixie Cafe make the biggest splash across its menu marquee, they're threatened with gastronomical upstaging by the southern-style eatery's 19 sides and scratch-made gravies. The chicken-fried steak, for example, is a tender, hand-breaded fillet that fully blossoms with flavor only after chefs smother it with cream gravy and cheddar cheese. And the Cajun grilled catfish's down-home taste isn't fully developed until it is paired up with bites of turnip greens, fried okra, or a homemade roll. The classic platter meals take advantage of this by pairing an entree with two sides, rolls, and jalapeño cornbread and can be ordered "light" for a portion that's smaller than the regular size and easier to toss in the air and catch in your mouth.
In 1956, residents of North Little Rock began catching mouthwatering whiffs of smoked ribs and chopped pork. Those aromas emanated from a spot called Lindsey's Bar-B-Q. Stepping inside, they found the source: a pit master named D.L. Lindsey Sr. Today, his son Donnie Lindsey II and his wife Eleanor carries on the family tradition at Lindsey's Hospitality House, located just a block away from his father's former eatery.
Lindsey II prepares many of the same specialties his dad served, including smoked chicken and racks of ribs paired with sides, such as glazed carrots and black-eyed peas. Patrons can relax in the dining room or arrange a catered feast in the restaurant's banquet room, which comfortably seats more than 200 people.