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Culture for lunch: $5.99


If Southerners still ate traditional Southern cuisine cooked at home, the statistics on our health wouldn’t be what they are. You only have to look at what people have in their carts at the grocery store to see that almost nobody cooks from scratch anymore. I have a lot of doubts about whether young people really learn to cook at all anymore. Often on Facebook I see pictures of dishes that I suspect pass for home cooking these days — concoctions of grated cheese, sausage, and biscuit mix, for example.

In this area, one of our cultural resources is the K&W Cafeteria, a regional chain that started in Winston-Salem in the 1930s, I believe. It’s been over 40 years since I first ate at a K&W, and almost nothing has changed. They do Southern cuisine pretty much from scratch, striking a pretty good balance between honesty of the cuisine and the low prices that people expect around here.

Many people look down on the K&W and wouldn’t want to be seen there. I am not among them. As a matter of fact, I’m a reverse snob when it comes to the K&W. When I have visitors from out of town (with the occasional exception of Californians), I almost always take them to the K&W to help acquaint them with traditional Southern cuisine. It was the favorite eating place of a friend from Europe (who made fun of restaurants that are considered fancy in these parts). And even those who look down on places popular with seniors and people of modest means have to grant that, at least, the K&W is not fast food.

Recently they started having lunch specials. One of those specials is four vegetables, plus bread and a drink, for $5.99. Today for lunch I had pinto beans (with onions), mashed potatoes, green beans, broccoli, corn bread and iced tea. How could you go wrong?


One Comment

  1. Jo Anne Sapp wrote:

    I live north of Durham and have a daughter in Siler City. We often meet half-way at the K&W in Chapel Hill. Am never disappointed with their food. The vegetable lunch special is my favorite.
    Enjoy your blog so much.

    Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

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