Trailheads were missing in inaction last week. Many crew members were down with Covid, or the crud (“crudius phlegmias” is the official medical term). Patrick was healthy, but he and his wife Donna had a big weekend ahead as their son Jack was marrying a lovely woman named Leigh. The proud parents hoped rest would rally the troops to attend the wedding.
But only Roy and Karlenne, Steve and Edith, and Carole sans sickly husband George made the marital festivities. It was a joyous bash and a pity we did not have a full roster of Trailheads–– they must have been terribly sick to pass up a full bar.
Those in attendance were gussied up and looked awfully snazzy (we wore our formal hiking boots).
Our wives (AKA “Trailmates”) looked incredible. Trailheads have all married well. What are these beautiful women doing with those jokers?!
So, we all wondered who would attend this week’s hike. Surprise–all the sickly Trailheads came: Trail Master Guy, George, and Brad joined Patrick. Roy fled to Boston, where he strolled the art museums with Karlenne, touched canvases, and said, “Gee, it looks like fresh paint, but it’s dry as dirt.” Steve was not feeling well and stayed in bed. Something must be going around, people. Be careful.
Trail Master selected a favorite path of ours, Jones Bridge Trail. We assembled in the parking lot on a beautiful autumn day, and Guy shared some gummy sushi he had bought. It was tasty, not at all fishy, and very gummilicious (with no Delta 8, 9, or THC). We wondered if they’d taste even better if the gummy sushi were battered and deep-fried. The answer is, of course.
We began the hike with Brad negotiating the brute Elvis and the muscular ball of energy Nilla on two leashes. The dogs dragged him along the path as Guy dealt with Fio, which left George to handle Patrick (off-leash).
Jones Bridge is an exceptional trail that runs along the Chattahoochee River. There are paths leading up hills for some gorgeous vistas and trails that snake through the dense woodlands. Watch your step, though. Many exposed roots are looking for trouble––and they will trip you but good. We know this from experience and nasty bruises.
Trailheads discussed a little of this and a lot of that. Then a little of that and a lot of this. Anyone listening to us would never mistake our inane babbling for a Mensa meeting.
On top of a hill, Brad went to change Elvis’s collar, and he accidentally dropped Nilla’s leash. At that moment, a deer scampered by. Nilla immediately took chase, and off the two animals ran into the woods.
Brad began shouting for her to come back, but Nilla has never been good at active listening, and obeying is not on her “things to do” list. She was MIA. Off playing hide and seek. She had escaped, no Rita Hayworth poster necessary. Andy Dufresne would be proud. As would Red.
Thus began an adventure of scouring the woodlands and waterways for Nilla, a rambunctious dog on a short leash with no human attached at the other end. Brad and Elvis split off as one search team, Guy and Fio another, and George and Patrick yet another. We had acres to cover, and worse yet, it was getting to be lunchtime.
We yelled, “NILLA!” like we were Stanley Kowalski, and she was Blanche DuBois in “A Streetcar Named Desire,” to no avail. We asked fellow hikers on the paths if they had seen a small white and brown dog running around with a leash. Nope, nothing––they hadn’t seen the escaped fugitive on the lam.
We continued yelling and whistling. Guy and Fio journeyed through the deep woodlands in case she had gotten her leash handle stuck in a tree. They found no dog, no leash, no dice.
Brad began wondering how he would tell his wife Barb that the dog somehow managed to do a Houdini on his watch. He planned a course of action––he'd post MISSING DOG signs. Of course, because it's Brad designing them, they would be worthy of being framed and hung. (To make sure it would be eligible for the Communication Arts Design Annual, the critical copy would be set in 8-point, extra thin, condensed type in a light gray, making it illegible to anyone older than 12).
After almost an hour of extensive searching, Guy and Fio walked along a path, and Nilla joined them from behind. Trail Master quickly snagged her leash and gave Nilla a perp-walk back to the parking lot. There was much rejoicing because the humans were hungry. Fio wasn't impressed. No one ever gleefully cheered for her because she doesn't get lost in the woods. Nilla is a drama queen in Fio's eyes.
Being ravished, we sped the backroads to Moe’s Original BBQ in Peachtree Corners (you can read a previous review here).
This joint is in a small plaza. The barbecue place anchors one end, a dry cleaner the other (they probably do a big business with barbecue sauce stains). Next to Moe’s Original BBQ is a new Henri’s Bakery & Deli: la-di-freakin’-da, a taste of Buckhead in the burbs.
Moe’s interior is comfortable. Walk to the counter, read the specials, order, pay, and grab a seat for table service. On the wall is a beautiful folk-art portrait of Stevie Ray Vaughn. Nice.
We grabbed a table on the patio so the dogs could join us. The kind counterwoman brought the dogs some water, and they drank as if they had been traveling across the Sahara.
The dogs looked suspicious, especially Nilla. Was she planning another escape? Would she swipe a motorcycle and do a Steve McQueen as she made her great escape?
Let’s gab about the grub. Brad and Patrick ordered the beef brisket. It was the daily special, and we heard it’s only offered twice weekly. While we liked it, we think next time we’ll pick pork. A joint with its roots in Alabama naturally knows pigs better than cattle.
Rib Master George and Trail Master Guy both got the St. Louis-style ribs. They were happy diners. The ribs are meaty with a nice smokey flavor and brushed with a tasty sauce. They made piles of bones in no time.
All the meats get kicked up a notch when drizzled with Moe’s Original Barbecue Sauce. Squeeze liberally and enjoy a trip to Flavor Town without riding beside Guy Fieri—no thanks to that road trip.
On to the sides. Fried green tomatoes were a daily special, and since you don’t see them very often in barbecue places, Patrick ordered some. They were excellent. Here’s the recipe: take a once-healthy tomato, slice it, dip the slices into a flavorful batter, and dunk them in a fryer until cooked golden brown. Then drizzle them with secret sauce. They eat like a dream.
Another daily special was the squash casserole. It had a good taste but was not a standout. Come to think of it, has any squash casserole ever stood out? Let us know.
The collard greens were authentic; give them a go if they’re your thing. You’ll be happy.
The baked beans were fine, and the Brunswick stew was good but heavy on the lima beans. Not our thing. Keep lima beans in Lima.
The coleslaw is delicious. It has a nice, sweet flavor and a crisp crunch.
We all raved about the toasted cornbread. This is a new take on a Southern classic. A slab of cornbread is toasted on both sides. Um-um. It is a flavor assault, and we were taken prisoners.
With our bellies full, we called it a day. All of us were exhausted from playing “Where’s Waldo” with Nilla. Guess which one of the leashes was hers?
We hope Nilla is on the straight path to rehabilitation. Then again, she does give off a Steve McQueen vibe, and no leash can contain that.
Rating: Four Ribs*
Moe's Original BBQ
5005 Peachtree Parkway Suite 810
Peachtree Corners, GA 30092
*About Our Barbecue Rating System
Trailheads do not claim to be food experts, epicureans, or sophisticated palettes. We are hungry hikers who attack a selected barbecue venue and ravage our way through whatever smoked fare and fixings they're dishing. Our reviews feature what we believe are the highlights of the menu we sampled. So our intent is not to trash talk the saintly folks who tend to smoldering smokers on hot, humid summer days. They are sacrificing themselves in the noble art of smoking meats and feeding the drooling masses. Many are independent entrepreneurs who are the backbone of this humming American economy. Now that you know our standards, you may wonder why every barbecue place gets a four ribs rating. The answer is easy: our group has acclaimed designers, and they think the ribs graphic looks cool. Who are we to argue? Enjoy.
Elvis Loves Fio
North Georgia BBQ
Pierre de Coubertin Medal
Glacier National Park
Island Ford Trail
Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy