As I said in an earlier update from the weekend, when I was a kid I remember there being five grand Georgia barbecue joints:
Fresh Air Barbecue (near Jackson);
Harold’s Barbecue (Atlanta – closed in the summer of 2012);
Melear’s BBQ (Fayetteville – closed in early 2011);
Sprayberry’s (Newnan) and
Vandy’s Bar-B-Q (Stateboro)
We had eaten at the Fresh Air off I-75 in Macon, several years back, but had never been to the original location. Then, I drove by a little over three years ago, when I was looking for the Blind Pig, but was dead-set on that destination. As we finished our trip to the Golden Isles, we made the journey off 75, up through Flovilla to the original Fresh Air, open since 1929. When we pulled up in the parking lot, I was surprised at the size of the place, even moreso once I got inside and realized just how little of the space was dedicated to diners.
We walked in and looked at the menu and were, honestly, shocked at how narrow the menu was:
- chopped pork;
- Brunswick stew;
- cole slaw;
- chips (three kinds, with three different prices); and
- bread (white bread or bun)
The lady behind the counter pointed to the three pictures on the wall,
and said that the middle picture (the Deluxe) had everything that they served in it.
I chose the Regular,
which looked just like the picture. The sauce was good, which was a good thing as the pork was fairly dry, but you could soak your sandwich fairly successfully. The Brunswick stew was thick and meaty, but overall, I was underwhelmed. I would have hated to make the drive from Atlanta to Jackson, just for this barbecue, as had previously occurred to me.