Rural, urban Saxapahaw the Eddy Pub
Welcome back indifferent readers to the Pot & Pan Handlers deviant blog edition Eddy Pub. A stone’s throw from Chapel Hill NC you’ll find Saxapahaw, NC. Oops did you blink? Then you missed it. Take the u-turn and you’ll see it… Saxapahaw, NC. The entirety of Saxapahaw is almost entirely located in one central building. A trendy revamped giant warehouse, that probably at one point housed & dried tobacco or something equally outdated. Now it’s a dream of successful marketing, reclaimed woods & metals, a clean linear ultramodern hipster utopia.
Contained within this Northern exposure is a General Store, serving farm to table foods, a butcher that receives their meats from neighboring farms. Not to be outdone, of course there is also a hipster coffee shop; your beard must be this long to apply. Live music venue? Duh. Obviously there is a brewery. Also located within the confines of this hipster utopia is our personal favorite the prerequisite Pub. Eloquently named the Eddy Pub, they have a seasonally changing menu. Fittingly this offers you the opportunity to adhere to the seventh rule of travel which states; never eat at a restaurant with a laminated menu. http://theeddypub.com/
This ambitious seasonality lends itself to an eclectic array of changing good eats. We’ve never had the same thing twice. Even if we wanted to it would be difficult as the Eddy Pub menu changes frequently. Parking is somewhat iffy as every hipster in the otherwise rural county literally has nowhere else to go. Once parking’s found, go up the stairs they probably manufactured from a larger set of stairs. Once inside, take in the Eddy Pub ultra-hipster ambience, including repurposed beer bottles as light shades. Go green bitches, reduce, reuse, and recycle. They probably recycle used grease to use as biofuel to power a converted VW hippy bus with the unrealistic expectation of one day walking across the Bering Strait. #Goals
Don’t forget your beard
On one occasion, predictably in my tightest hipster jeans, I’ve ordered a Black bean, chipotle soup. Of course containing bacon it’s garnished with a dollop of sour cream and fried tortilla strips. Smooth and slightly spicy, the drab chipotle brown soup is relieved to be topped with a splash of white sour cream. The sour cream brings a bright fermented acidity to the earthy soup and the tortilla strips bring a textural counterpoint to keep it interesting. Oh yeah and the bacon tastes like, well… um, bacon. How superlative do you need it? Isn’t bacon good enough?
As I was still comfortable in my tightest pants, we followed that up with Pig Head Fritters. The Eddy Pub nails this one. The golden brown fried nuggets of porky goodness taste like the very essence of fried pig and contain everything but the oink. The Eddy Pub serves these with a healthy portion of Lusty Monk Mustard that brings an acidic counter punch to the unctuous fritters. And the obligatory North Carolina coleslaw that sings soprano with a crisp cabbage crunch swimming in restaurant grade mayonnaise. All together Pig Head Fritters are a composed and thoughtful dish that pleases the palate and the plate. With two pints of beer in the form of desert, it’s time to change my pants.
With Ramen dishes finally shedding the stereotype of college dorm food and Ramen joints popping up all over the landscape, the Eddy Pub got on board. Ramen noodles, pickled cabbage, pig belly, and soft a soft boiled egg all floating in a rich, velvety bone broth. Perfect. The bone broth is elegantly soft, almost buttery with just a pinch of salt and could that be ginger?
The noodles are pleasantly done, softened in the broth and soaking up the concentrate of bone broth. Meanwhile the crispy pickled cabbage brings the necessary acid component. Thin strips of carrot offers crunch. And the perfectly unctuous pork belly brings the fat and porky texture of artfully prepared belly. Textbook, the belly is seared and crispy on the outside, a pillow of silky meat inside. Once the egg yolk is cracked the broth, thickens and everything becomes married in a gastronomic orgy of flavors and textures that binds the entire dish into one entity.
Cod, are you there? It’s me, Pot Handler
As a recent transplant from the Northeast, we’re suckers for a fried fish. Haddock or cod preferably and the Eddy Pub does cod right. Properly old English style with a beer batter, the carbonation in the beer leads to the patented crispy English preparation. Crispy buoyant batter on the outside, but inside the flaky and fork tender cod disintegrates into tasty bits with the slightest threat of a fork.
Once upon a time the stupidest person in the world stated “It’s a great idea to serve fries underneath a pile of fried fish.” Thus ensuring the once crispy fries would steam underneath a dome of fried fish and become squishy sticks of gummy potato. But it’s tradition blah, blah, blah. So was serving them in a newspaper, a tradition that the health department would never allow now. It’s time to move on.
Liberate those crispy fries to a side plate to ensure a life of maximum crunchy exterior. I implore you Eddy Pub to forgo your delusional serving of exploited French fries. Of course the American requisite side of coleslaw to round out your fried foods with a hit of sweet, acidic crunch is well achieved with a purple Eddy Pub slaw. This American tradition has a foundation in culinary technique rather than the baffling English accompaniment of green peas. What the fuck, England?
Again a desert of fermented barley served in a pint glass was exceptionally received. For that and all the reasons above… we thank you Eddy Pub.
Coming soon: we hit up a Durham (Durm, say it like you’re from there) area brewery with tasty results. Spoiler alert; bacon jam. Until then, may the odds be ever in your flavor. –The Pot & Pan Handler
The Pot & Pan Handler are escaped restaurant scum, armed with nothing but a torn apron and wielding a battered spatula, we bare the cross of mediocre food like a badge of honor. So you don’t have to. Same bat time & same bat channel eccentric readers, we’re sharing our tips, tricks & travels we’ll see you soon in a restaurant or bar somewhere near you.
A special shout out to the OJ endorsed face melter @burrobot who guest hosted as the Pan Handler for a portion of this post. No affluent suburbanite WASPS were harmed in the crafting of this compelling blog post.