Next week, I’ll be heading back to Mississippi and Memphis alongside my trusty driving and dining companion (aka Mama) to take part in several fun events to talk about Eat Drink Delta — and hopefully sign and sell lots of copies! (Please check my home page as I update these listings of events.) I love to explore the little back roads of my home state. While I was teaching journalism at Ole Miss last semester, I sometimes took day trips to surrounding towns just to explore, like Water Valley. I had read an inspiring story in the New York Times about a group of creative young women who had banded together to revitalize this former railroad hub that has definitely seen its better days. One weekend while my husband was visiting, we took a little drive down Highway 6 to check it out. We were both quite smitten by its surprising mix of frozen-in-time businesses and lively new establishments that respect the local history, while giving new life to some of the long-dormant buildings in the aging business district.
Besides the antique shops, homegrown hair salons, and old-time drug store with a real soda fountain, there is also a flourishing arts culture in Water Valley. To the left are some very unique jewelery pieces (by Beth Long of Bruce, MS) that I happened upon in a lovely local art gallery called Bozarts.
But my favorite find in Water Valley — not surprisingly to anyone who knows me — was The B.TC. Old-Fashioned Grocery
(above), which is full of fresh …everything! From
almost-too-pretty-to-eat produce and just-baked bread, to local and high quality milk and honey (below), B.T.C. is a grocery go-er’s dream come true.
Y’all can probably guess which “aisle” I loved most in this store: every one that housed southern specialties like Delta Grind grits, delicious fried pies, and ready-to-go homemade casseroles (to name just a few).
If your mouth is now watering like mine is just writing this, you might be excited to hear that there’s a dine-in area too, complete with well-loved, fire engine red booths and homey round tables. The best part is, there’s no shortage of daily hot breakfast or homemade cornbread (which I certainly recommend) in this quaint little brunch and lunch spot. In case you are wondering what B.T.C. stands for, it’s “Be The Change (you wan to see in the world) — a Gandhi quote.
If you too find yourself hankering to take the Water Valley exit, I would certainly encourage you to visit the Chamber of Commerce
Website, or even take a self-led tour like I did. In future posts I’ll be writing about other tasty road trips — planned and accidental, like this one — and would love to hear about yours!
Eat, drink, and enjoy the journey,