Kate Krader (@kkrader on Twitter) is Food & Wine's restaurant editor. When she tells us where to find our culinary heart's desire, we listen up.
A few months ago, several newspapers got punked by a fake news account from Arkansas that claimed a man had gone into a coma after eating 413 Cheddar Bay Biscuits at Red Lobster. (That’s nearly 62,000 calories in biscuits!)
For anyone wishing to make that faux record a reality at a place that’s not Red Lobster, there are several excellent new biscuit places opening around the country. They’re not quite as ubiquitous as cupcake emporiums...yet, but they’re still rolling out, like the 24-hour biscuit-centric spot in New York City that has to keep closing because of overwhelming demand. Also, look out for Chicago as a biscuit powerhouse.
Empire Biscuit (New York, New York)
This brand-new East Village spot is trying to be open 24/7, or as the menu says for “Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Drunk.” Empire offers a plethora of biscuit options, from a New Orleans-style muffuletta to the "You-So-Nasty" (pineapple and thyme jam with Creole cream cheese) to the Fancy Pants (with foie gras butter). As befits a modern biscuit place, you can customize: Choose either a country-style or all-butter biscuit, then select one of 12 butters and spreads (such as bacon-and-cracklin’ butter or pimento cheese) and one of a dozen jams, jellies and marmalades (like pumpkin pie spread, if you’re thinking Thanksgiving biscuits).
The Buttered Biscuit (Chicago, Illinois)
“Farm-to-table waffle house” is the mission statement for this opening-soon diner in the kitschy Ohio House Motel. Look out for every iteration of biscuit you’ve ever dreamed of, from the ubiquitous fried chicken biscuit sandwich to a slew of bacon, eggs, sausage, gravy and biscuit combos to - maybe, just maybe - a black velvet dessert biscuit. There’s also an ingenious breakfast salad in the works with bacon, eggs, hot sauce vinaigrette and biscuit croutons.
Bang Bang Pie Shop (Chicago, Illinois)
Bang Bang is renowned for its pies, but now it’s focusing on its fantastic sour cream-based, Midwestern-style biscuits (at Food & Wine, we say they’re some of the best in the country). The new biscuit sandwich menu includes the Ham Biscuit with a poached egg, pimento cheese, pepper jelly and grits; and the Sausage Biscuit (which, they say, is “rendering the McMuffin obsolete”) with a poached egg, sausage, gravy and Concord grape jelly.
Pine State Biscuits (Portland, Oregon)
Biscuit lovers’ hearts were broken when this Portland spot closed its Belmont Street location earlier this year, but Pine State’s other spots are going strong. And in early 2014, a new location opens on Division Street. Pine State is legendary for its crazy biscuit sandwiches like The Wedgie (fried chicken, fried green tomato, iceberg lettuce and blue cheese dressing), as well as biscuits and gravy. (The Moneyball is a biscuit and gravy, topped with an over-easy egg; for $1 more you can Double Down with another egg.)
Maple Street Biscuit Company (Jacksonville, Florida)
Last summer, Maple Street opened its second biscuit-centric location in Jacksonville. The menu features more than a dozen signature sandwiches like Squawk on the Street (fried chicken and house-made pepper jelly) and the Blues Biscuit (pulled pork, house-made slaw and barbecue sauce). If you’re trying to carbo- and/or cholesterol-load, you can get an order of five-cheese mac and cheese with a cheese cracker crust on the side.
Biscuit Head (Asheville, North Carolina)
This new breakfast and brunch café works hard to be ultra eco-friendly: The goal is to make everything either compostable or recyclable. You can substitute meat products with seitan sausage at no extra charge. Biscuit Head’s menu options include the Black Eyed Pea Biscuit (posole, black-eyed pea cakes, poached eggs and green chile hollandaise); the Benedict Biscuit (mortadella, poached eggs and hollandaise); and the Brisket Biscuit (brisket, pickled onion, smoked goat cheese, egg and barbecue hollandaise). Because Biscuit Head is also friendly to dietary restrictions, you can get any of these on a gluten-free biscuit for an extra dollar.
More from Food & Wine:
More of the Country’s Best Biscuits
Best Southern Food in the U.S.
Spectacular Salty-Sweet Desserts
Greatest Chili in the U.S.
© 2011 American Express Publishing Corporation. All rights reserved.
We make biscuits in Texas, our gravy is creamy with bacon grease and coffee... Please try the real the biscuits and gravy before listening to a this east coast crap... Cast iron or go home...
I find it HILARIOUS that for decades now, the enire North, Midwest and West coast has done nothing but mock and belittle all Southern cusine as being unhealthy, ignorant and useless, but NOW, suddenly, they just can't seem to get enough of it!
THAT is rich!...
CatHead's BBQ in San Francisco. We took our name after a Buttermilk biscuit that is as big as a cat's head. We have them everyday.
Is BiscuitHead a relation of yours?
Of course he is….a cousin from my 'Sista's side of the family and living in the Florida grasslands.
If someone can re-create the cheddar bay biscuits that Red Lobster serves, they will make a killing. Nothing short of addictive.
I concur. Lightyears better than their seafood.
Sam's Club sells a package mix for these...I have one, just haven't tried them yet. Have to mix in your own cheddah, but will be interesting to see if they compare!
JB – soooo the box at Sam's is basically repackaged Bisquick then? I'll just buy the Bisquick and be done with it.
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