You may have noticed that things are looking a little... let's say "less than jam-packed" around here. Truthfully, it's not that we're busy. In fact, it's the opposite. Right now, the sports reporting world has been reduced to talking about Lance Armstrong and Venus Williams. Yes, it's that time of the year. The time when football, basketball and college baseball are over and MLB's games are insignificant. It's the time of the year when every sports media outlet begins their fantastical what-ifs and "lighter side" stories.
Somewhat refusing to adhere to the mythical nature of the offseason, we here at da' Cup plan to launch a full on assault at the city of Oxford. How will we assault it, you ask? Why, by enumerating the best eating establishments, bars, stores, etc. that it has to offer, of course. Yes, that's right. It's award time. Call it the Cuppies (we've just hit a new low).
"Wait, but how is that 'assault?' "
You know what? Just shut up with the questions already.
Today's installment of what is to become a terribly irregular segment: Breakfast, and the five finest Oxonian establishments by which to procure it.
5. Huddle House - Ole one tooth Edna may not look so good when sober, but when it's 3 AM, and you're recovering from a night chock full of poor decisions, Edna's sex appeal is amped up. While it doesn't rival Edna's beauty, the breakfast food at Huddle House ain't so bad. The patty melts (breakfast? I submit so) are to die for.. I mean, the patty melts are a meal for which I am seriously willing to die. And the hash browns with every possible thing on them are great. The House has everything you could ask for in a 24-hour establishment on the wrong side of town: giggling stoners, burnt coffee, a gentleman who works both the griddle and security, and cigarette butts mixed in with your scrambled eggs (loads of flavor, I promise).
Huddle House would, of course, be quickly supplanted on this list were Oxford to offer the staple of all 24-hour artery killers, Steak n' Shake. Hell, even Waffle House would knock Huddle House off the list. It's that bad.
4. Sonic - Seriously, it's available all day. The Sonic Breakfast Burrito is delectable.
3. The Beacon - While the 80 year old townies who somehow live in Oxford but work on a farm will stare at you (with a "shunning" look) the whole time you're there, the food is classic down home southern cooking. Everyone loves walking into a place where the menu doesn't even need to exist. If it's an American breakfast item, they have it. If it's something you learned about in Italy, they don't. The constant influx of regular customers and extremely simple menu items have kept their menu classic and inexpensive. When you want nothing more than some ham and eggs with a side of grits, look no further than The Beacon. Aside from the food, the ambiance of the place is creepy yet inviting, kinda like a time-capsule.
Well, that's because the place really is a time capsule. If the building itself--an old 1950's style diner, complete with red "leather" booths and wood paneling--doesn't do it for you, the geriatric clientele sitting in a room wallpapered with the confederate flag will make you think the 1960's never happened.
Somehow though, they don't have sweet tea, so they drop to #3.
2. Bottletree Bakery - "The sandwiches are shit but chicks dig it, nuff said." That's what Ghost wanted me to say but that's, well, so like him. While Bottletree will always be for some of us a place where regret-filled hangovers are spent piecing togehter the previous night's events with whoever this damn Mary Sue sitting across from you is, the rest of us can really appreciate a place forged by hard work and a bit of an artsy streak. Bottletree has a lot of good choices and it's a bit on the lighter side, which, for folks who don't want your typical greasy spoon type of stuff, can be pretty refreshing. Even though they cause a major fire hazard every time they re-heat croissants or cinammon buns by firing up some old toaster oven on loan from the former Soviet Bloc, it's worth it. I rarely pass up the turkey and cheddar croissant, but when I do, the cinammon bun that's bigger than my head (which is saying a lot) is always what I get. Unless you get the aforementioned bun, you probably won't leave stuffed, but sometimes that's a good thing. Other good choices include their brioche and their bagels, but I'll stick by my original recommendations.
Ghost is right though, it's kinda-sorta a sorority girl Mecca.
1. Big Bad Breakfast - BBB has been a hit in Oxford since it first opened its doors. Local ingredients which are cooked well and delivered by a young woman who is, at the very least, hotter than the aforementioned Edna will always be a hit in places like Oxford. Honestly, it doesn't get better than BBB. What isn't there to love? Their fried chicken is brined in Coca Cola. The tomatoes, herbs, fruits, et cetera are grown in a garden behind the restaurant. The meats are all from local farmers. The coffee comes from Cafe du Monde. The freshly made jam is, for lack of a better term, "DA JAM!"
I would try to recommend something but, here's the catch, I can't. You will not go wrong with anything on the menu. Biscuits, chicken, eggs, bacon (oh dear heavens the bacon), hashbrowns, grits--it's all good. You will leave stuffed... and delicious to a cannibal.
P.S. - I promise, none of these establishments are giving us a dime for this. We just really felt like generating some discussion.