Don’t Judge a Biscuit by its Crust

20140316-151723.jpgThe first time I passed it, I thought it was abandoned. I thought it was just another old building that was left to slowly decay along one of the narrow country roads in Cumming. It certainly didn’t look like an operating business. The rusted roof, unpainted plywood walls, giant potholes in the parking lot – they all supported my assumption. The peeling, barely-readable white letters stenciled onto the side of the building seemed almost laughable: “FRESH BISCUITS 5:30 – 11AM.” I figured it had been a long time since any biscuits had been served.

The biscuit place is not on a road I travel frequently, and I usually pass it on weekend afternoons. Then one day, I took a different route to work and passed it early on a Tuesday morning. There was a line of cars wrapped around the building waiting in line at a drive-thru window, and a red neon “OPEN” sign lit up in the window. To say I was surprised would be an understatement. I figured maybe the locals had been going there for biscuits for so long that they weren’t bothered by the building’s deteriorating exterior.

I didn’t think of the place again until it was mentioned by my neighbor one early morning while waiting at the school bus stop. He casually mentioned that he was going to get some biscuits. I asked him where and when he didn’t even know the name of the business, just it’s location “at the corner of Dr. B. and Spot.” I knew it was the same place.  When I asked if the biscuits were any good he rubbed his stomach and replied, “Oh yeah. The best in town.” At that point I knew I had to set my judgments aside and give this place a shot. They must have some pretty darn good biscuits to make up for the lack of aesthetics. This same neighbor asked me join him at the biscuit place one morning. “I’m not hitting on you or anything, just thought it would be nice to have a coffee.” But that’s a different story.

20140523-085841-32321367.jpgLuckily I had some cash in my wallet on the day I decided to stop by; they don’t accept credit cards, just cash and checks (who writes a check for a breakfast biscuit?). I notice as I pull in that there is a faded, barely-legible sign over the front entrance that says “Guy’s Biscuit Barn.”

I pulled up and was greeted by a young lady with a braces-filled smile. I told her it was my first visit and asked for a suggestion. She turned to get the opinion of several older ladies behind her and one of them reached her arm across the girl, out the window, and pointed to a hand-typed piece of computer paper taped to the inside of the window and said, “Here’s the menu.” While she stared at me impatiently, I quickly chose my default breakfast sandwich, a bacon egg & cheese biscuit. I paid about $3.75 for the sandwich and waited a minute or two while they prepared it. I didn’t mind the wait, in fact I was happy they didn’t reach back and hand me a prepared sandwich that had been sitting under heat lamps.

Surely you’ve glanced at the photo by now and seen the deliciousness that I was served. The biscuit was wonderfully crumbly while maintaining enough firmness to allow it to be eaten without falling apart. It had just the right amount of salt to give it a little kick. The ladies in the kitchen did not skimp on the bacon and the cheese beautifully served as the glue that held it all together. Making biscuits is tricky business (I’ve yet to perfect my recipe), and man, that was a good biscuit. The shape was ingenious, with a  wide, flat bottom that allowed the food to be stacked inside without falling out the sides. It was big too – almost too big for me to finish. Almost.

So, I’m guilty of judging Guy’s Biscuit Barn before giving it a fair shot. Turns out you don’t need a fancy new building to make the best biscuits in town. But if you do decide to visit, be ready to order once you get to that window!

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