Once I joined Chi Psi as an undergrad, I loved reading the blog posts from Updates from the Road. However, one string of blog posts always seemed to stand out to me, and apparently to other Alpha Visitors, and that was Brotherly Grub. Because who doesn’t love food? So to keep the tradition alive, and at the request of Br. Buglewicz the Elder from Alpha Gamma, I’ve decided to try my own hand at the theme. And where better to start than right at home?
As a graduate of Ole Miss and a Mississippi native, one of my favorite posts from the Brotherly Grub line was obviously Br. Derek Taylor’s post regarding Oxford, Mississippi. While Taylor Grocery should definitely be one of your top stops for food to get a true taste of the state (it IS the catfish capital of the world, after all. The more you know!), I’ve decided to expand upon Br. Taylor’s post to provide a few more options should you ever decide to navigate the northern hills of Mississippi and the lovely town of Oxford. So without further adieu, here were some of my favorite places to eat during my time at Ole Miss.
Tucked just north of the square in Oxford is Volta Taverna, a quaint little gas station turned Greek restaurant. If you ever find yourself in Oxford during the spring or summer, this should definitely be one of your first stops. They are consistently voted best patio in Oxford, and the service is impeccable (though I’m a bit biased, as this Alpha Visitor was once employed here during his college career).
Dan’s 21+ drink pick: House Margarita. If you come in on a Monday, Thursday, or Saturday they’re half off!
Dan’s food pick:
Appetizer: Hotty Toddy Balls/Dip Plate
Entrée: If it’s your first time, get the gyro. The meat is much heartier than your traditional gyro. Also, if you enjoy sweet potatoes, swap the standard side of fries for the sweet potato variety.
One of Oxford’s most famous restaurants, Ajax is right on the square in downtown Oxford. Known for it’s southern comfort food, Ajax is a solid choice if you want a filling southern meal for a reasonable price that won’t break the bank.
Dan’s pick: Chicken and dumplings, with sides of mac and cheese and butter beans.
Big Bad Breakfast/ Snackbar
Both of these Oxford gems are owned and operated by the award-winning Chef John Currence, otherwise known as the Big Bad Chef. At the end of a long parking lot just across the road from the earlier mentioned Volta Taverna, you’ll find these restaurants neighboring each other.
Big Bad Breakfast is known for their brunch, and also for being PACKED just about every day of the week. Expect a wait to get into this restaurant, but it’s totally worth it. Also, everything is locally sourced, so the freshness shines through.
Dan’s Pick: Just about anything. Seriously. It’s all fantastic.
Snackbar is a bit more on the expensive dinner side of things, but with the atmosphere, setting, and amazing food, you get what you pay for. Snackbar is one of my personal favorites because due to its location, it’s often overlooked. So if you time it right there shouldn’t be too much of a wait. Think of it as a classy restaurant with a southern theme to all of their food.
Dan’s 21+ drink pick: Old Fashioned. One of the few restaurants in Oxford to make the drink the way it was originally intended.
Dan’s food pick: Snackbar has a good variety of seafood, so my personal preference is to order a dozen oysters. They generally have a variety from different parts of the country, so try a platter to get different levels of saltiness and size.
Here are a few more honorable mentions to provide even more variety:
- Pizza: Soulshine, Square Pizza (late night)
- Authentic Mexican: The Taco Shop (authentic Mexican food, unauthentic name)
- American Mexican: South Depot Taco Shop (think higher quality Chipotle/Qdoba)
- Steak: The Oxford Grillehouse
- Burger: Handy Andy
- Sushi: Jensei
- Thai: Rice and Spice
Oxford has quite a few restaurants to choose from, and to be fair, it’s hard to go wrong with any choice. Oxfordians are very particular about their food, so if a restaurant isn’t top-notch, it isn’t going to last very long.
Alpha Visitor Dan Hooks, Gamma ’14