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Martha’s Place, Warm Southern Soul on Nebraska Ave
March 23, 2012
Martha’s Place, the great transcend of cultural divide. Here I sit, on Nebraska Avenue proudly wearing my Piggly Wiggly shirt from America’s first true self-service grocery store. (Tidbit of knowledge: Piggly Wiggly, a primarily Midwestern/Southern grocery chain, was founded in 1916 and prior to the opening of this grocery store shoppers used to “order” their groceries and a clerk would gather all the items from the shelf).
Not important, we are at Martha’s Place, not Piggly Wiggly. Directly across the street sits Ella’s, a restaurant we have grown to love and would frequent more often if we had more money. Martha’s Place has always intrigued us, from their beaten down location directly between a hardware store and what appears to be a deserted halfway house, to their amateur hand-painted eggs and bacon on the windows, and their bright red A-frame sign displaying “$2.50 breakfast all day.” Value Pawn & Jewelry is also across the street, so if you don’t happen to have any spare change for breakfast, you can trade in one of your gold teeth, take the cash, and buy breakfast for 40-45 people.
When we entered it was a bit uncomfortable as we were not sure whether or not to sit down and wait or go up to the counter and order, but within minutes our beautiful friendly waitress ready to pop with the gift of life greeted us. Wow, this menu is fantastic. Everything on the menu is priced at the approximate value of a Pabst Blue Ribbon; my kind of place.
Jesus hangs on the wall, staring at me. I never understood that. You love him, that’s great, but why showcase it on the wall like it’s a family portrait or a Johnny Depp poster in your dorm room (I had one of those…)? I currently have a crush on Anderson Cooper but I’m not hanging a picture of him on the wall unless I’m in it with him.
Our food arrives hot off the griddle, or wherever it came from, I was not spying on the kitchen. Grits, biscuits and gravy, omelette, over-easy eggs and home fries. Did I mention this is by far the biggest plate of breakfast I have even seen outside of a buffet?
I can’t say it was the best biscuits and gravy I’ve ever had in my life, but when breakfast can be traded for pocket change, how can you complain? And, great atmosphere. From what may seem a bit intimidating on the outside, there’s a warm southern soul on the inside. And hey, even Jesus hangs out there.