Tag Archives: cafe

Linden, The Little Town that Could With Help From the Dumonts

Lunch and music at the Commodore Music Café was a treat. Few restaurants offer live music with lunch.

American Press Travel News-June 19, Linden, TN.–Bob and Barb “On The Road Again.” When we arrived in the small town of Linden, Tennessee we almost immediately felt at home. We had been invited to stay at the newly remodeled, and upgraded Commodore Hotel. We met Kathy and later Michael Dumont, and realized they were on a mission. However, they were incredibly friendly and accommodating. Michael took us on a delightful trip through the county, and also showed us his remodeled B&B outside of town, and close to the Tennessee River (we’ll be back) that has more species of fish in its depth than any other American river (according to Mr. Benson of the Chattanooga Aquarium) and I plan to get close and personal with some of them as soon as possible. The Commodore held 22-rooms at the hotel and next door annex, and all done-up first rate, but with very reasonable cost. www.commodorehotellinden.com (931) 589-3224–114 East Main St. Linden TN. 37096

We were invited to fish with the Mayor, Wess Ward, and Perry Counties Sherriff, Nick Weems, who also brought his boat, and fished with us on the Buffalo River for smallmouth and largemouth bass (more on fishing in part-2 of our Linden experience later). Travel writers do travel on their stomachs, and we knew we would be in for a treat with the live music, as we chowed on terrific fare at the corner Music Café in the hotel.

While I fished, Barb went next door on main St., and just after I arrived back at the hotel, we availed ourselves of the opportunity to do “Wave- Painting” at the Buffalo River Co-Op Craft Immersion project. Lots of fun, met great folks doing their crafts “thing” in wood and textiles. We were sent our little paintings to our home after they finally dried. We walked main street and met proprietors of Sparky and Ringos, Dimples Shop & Restaurant, Custom Creations Jewelry and also ate at Tims Video Corner Café our second evening in town. We also met Allyson Hinson Dickey, the new Chamber Director who offered us the Keys to the town (so-to-speak) for us to visit and experience. The Dumont’s invited us to have dinner with them, even though their restaurant was closed that evening. Before I forget; we also visited Mouse tail Landing State Park with Michael Dumont ,and everyone that enjoys camping would love the facilities and hiking ops.

When Michael and Kathy Dumont decided to change their life from Rhode Island to a little town between Nashville and Memphis, TN., they moved to Linden, a town that had seen better days before the Interstate way-laid most of its business and tourist traffic, as new interstates have done so, all over America (remember route 66) they chose the gorgeous rural area between Memphis and Nashville, and purchased land for their home, and acquired several building in the town of Linden. Linden has a backyard of the Buffalo River and the Tennessee River, rife with fabulous landscapes and wildlife.  * Stay tuned for part-2 our visit to Perry County, fishing, The Buffalo River Resort,  and an unusual museum on the Tennessee River.

We were strolling the neat little town of Linden!!
Larger than life, Minnie Pearl statue. A well known figure from Linden. She is in the lobby of the Commodore Hotel.
Barb heading for the hotel. The red car is a 1949 perfect condition, Dodge that belongs to the Dumont’s.

 

 

 

 

 

One of the small mouth bass while fishing with the Mayor and Sheriff of Linden and Perry County,
Newspaper article reminiscent of how folks in a small town (Similar to Mayberry RFD) takes time out for just having fun! Article was on the wall of the hotel lobby.
Sheriff of Perry County took a time-out to take me fishing!!
Mayor of Linden also took me fishing!!!
Sheriff and mayor were a “hoot” to fish with and get to know!!
While I went fishing, Barb took a class in art at the Buffalo River Artisans Cooperative, next door to the Commodore Hotel.

Abuelas Cuban Cafe

Americanpresstravelnews- September 19th, Crossville, TN.-“Bob & Barb on the Road Again”–Crossville has several very good Mexican Restaurants, now it has Abuelas Cuban Café.  No, not all Hispanic food emporiums are the same. There are many variations on rice and beans, pork and beef, spicing and marinating, etc,

What’s different? An island such as Cuba, and the little city within a city; Little Havana in S. Florida, has its own distinctive take from Mexican and Puerto Rican foods. Cubans grow Yucca, of course, as in other Hispanic foods; Plantains and black beans, yet marinated roast pork, seasoned chicken and Cuban Spice Veggies are usually distinctive to Cuban style foods, of course not always.  Havana salad (use of fruits such as mango and papaya) has avocado and a very different take on citrus salad dressing.  Piccadillo bowl has savory stewed beef with raisins and olives (Mexican piccadillo does not usually have raisins) white or yellow rice, yes, but seasoned differently.  All of this is to say, Cuban foods are just different and savory too, in their own right.

We tried the Cuban sandwich, and the roast pork sandwich-they are definitely quite unique in their food genre. In true Cuban style, meats are usually marinated, and this not only softens them, but adds considerable flavor. The Cuban bread is toasted with the ingredients in between the bread, usually pressed solidly on the grill. Various items (pork, ham, salami, pickle and cheese) are melted and hot when brought to the table with a side of sweet plantains (banana’s) delicious!.

Mom Karen Reph (the Abuela- means Grandmother) and her daughters;  Kelsey  Green, and Karly opened the restaurant July 7th 2017. But first, they did a few “pop up” trials where they went into two other off-day restaurants, and showcased their dishes to the public. They had great responses, and so they “jumped the broom” so to say, on to, and into 595 Main Street in Crossville and opened Abuelas Cuban Café.

WOW! The café con leche (Coffee with hot milk) a very Cuban coffee presentation, is superb. Their flan custard dessert was delicious, and the empanadas (little fried pocket sandwiches like those fresh fried pies) were filled with ground, marinated beef with raisins and olives. The empanadas were terrific, and we know; Barb and I lived near some of the best Cuban restaurants in S. Florida, and frequented all of them from time to time several years ago. When you go, try the Yucca Fries with some tangy mojo mayo for dipping.  The Havana Salad, try it for yourself-its got the goods for flavors of the islands.

We really like Cuban coffees, and starting out the day with a strong, sweet Espresso is a real mood, eye opener, and energy wake-up.

Karen Reph, mom and grandmother amongst the 3-co-owners said that: “We brought to Crossville our heritage foods we grew up with, and felt Crossville folks would love them too.”

We explored something new in Crossville, and found ourselves at a Cuban Restaurant, so reminiscent of what we enjoyed in South Florida and the Keys, and we are happy to recommend Abuelas for everyone looking to spice up their lives and palates, for a change of pace.  Abuelas is Located at 595 Main Street, store #102 in Crossville.

By the way Barb and I wrote the book “Best Restaurants in the Florida Keys.”(Available at Amazon) Of the hundreds of restaurants, one of our favorites was a Cuban Restaurant.