Once a month, Rachel’s family gets together for dinner. They rotate siblings as to who chooses where we eat. Rachel e-mailed me on a Tuesday to ask where we should go that Saturday. It was ironic as I was just thinking about some restaurants that I wanted to try. Okay, that might not be ironic since you could ask me that question anytime and I would have a quick answer. I replied that we should try Papa O’s in Draper. Having visited Louisiana just a few weeks before, I was excited for some Soul Food.
Papa O’s brings the “Meat & Three” concept to Utah. This concept is famous in the Southern States and is where you get a meat for your main course and three sides. I was ecstatic upon walking in and reviewing the menu. How was I going to be able to try all this food? Pace yourself; life is a marathon, not a sprint.
The menu was loaded with items such as pork chops, fried chicken, meatloaf, pulled pork, fried chicken and waffles, crawfish gumbo, pot roast, catfish and fried shrimp among others. The sides are red beans & rice, green beans, cheese grits, fried green tomatoes, mashed potatoes & gravy, corn, okra, cole slow, baked beans, collard greens, black eyed peas, potato salad and candied yams. You can also get hushpuppies, cornbread and biscuits.
The Low Country Dinner looked delicious. It is Tomato Based Andouille with crawfish and fried shrimp over cheese grits. For my three sides I got red beans & rice, cole slaw and hushpuppies.
Growing up I expected grits to taste like sand. They sounded awful. That was until my good friend my South Carolina introduced me to grits. He would make a bacon, eggs and grits breakfast that could make your heart stop. The bacon was cooked first and then the eggs were cooked in the bacon grease. The grits were boiled and then what looked like half a cube of butter was dropped in the pot. It was delicious but you really did have chest pains that day.
I can’t recall having grits at all in the past few years since my friend moved to Ohio. That was until I walked into Papa O’s. They were incredibly delicious and I savored every bite. The crawfish and shrimp were great and very flavorful. The red beans & rice had a spicy bite to them but were wonderful. The cole slaw was nothing special but good. The only bad thing was that the hushpuppies were a little dry. No big deal.
My sister-in-law was sitting across from me. She stopped eating halfway through the meal saying that the crawfish shells on my plate were grossing her out. I would feel bad but I do know that anything that doesn’t come pre-made from a box or bag would in fact gross her out.
I look forward to raiding their menu again soon.