I was on CBC Radio’s Alberta at Noon show the other day, talking about my new Marathon Mouth ebook on great road-trip eats in the western U.S./Canada.
But the real stars were the province-wide listeners who called in or tweeted to champion their favourite food stops near or far from their homes. And despite my extensive research trips, many of their picks were places I’d never heard of. So this post is dedicated to their suggestions (I hope my spelling guesses of their names is reasonably accurate).
Bernie won a free download of the book for suggesting The Last Straw in Libby, Montana. How often do you find hand-pressed, fresh burgers made from your choice of Angus or longhorn beef or bison? Or, at breakfast, corn beef hash for under $7? It’s apparently great stuff, especially for a small town off the beaten path on Highway 2, between Bonners Ferry and Kalispell.
Many Albertans travel to adjoining British Columbia, so it’s no surprise places in the western province featured prominently in listener picks. On his drive west along the Trans-Canada Highway to Vancouver, Ralph often stays overnight in Sicamous at Joe Schmuck’s Roadhouse so he can partake in both dinner (ribs and deep-fried pickles are menu features) and breakfast before hitting the road again.
There are also some great finds on less-travelled B.C. roads. An hour north of Kamloops on Highway 5, Little Fort is a wee place on the long drive to Blue River and Valemont. Glenn likes pulling over here at friendly High Five Diner for a healthy feed of burgers, pie or maybe stew and warm biscuits. In the southeast corner of B.C. on Highway 3, Fernie is an active outdoors community. When visiting, Pat frequents Big Bang Bagels for its fresh-baked bagels, perhaps converted to an eggy breakfast sandwich.
Of course, this being an Alberta radio program, there were several callers promoting places closer to home. I hadn’t found a good, affordable place to eat in Claresholm, south of Calgary on Highway 2. So I was delighted to hear Carol Anne nominate Meadow Creek Sausage, where the fresh, natural meats can turn up in, say, a chorizo burger or a flame-grilled sausage served on a pretzel bun. At the other end of the province, just east of Grande Prairie on Highway 43, Kendra likes pausing at tiny Crooked Creek Store for hot-from-the-oven doughnuts.
Hey, if you’ve got a favourite place for road-trip cheap eats, let me know, in a paragraph or so, either through the comment box below or by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll share the results and select one entry for a free download of my Marathon Mouth ebook.