Saturday, December 30, 2017

Maddox Drive-Inn - Brigham City, Utah

I previously posted a visit to Hardware Ranch on my day excursion with my two oldest grandgirls. We'd taken sleds driven by horses out to see wild elk and were on our way to Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake. Maddox Drive-Inn, in Brigham City, was on our way and has been an institution since I was a child. We used to eat there when we went boating on Willard Bay or were driving through on our way to Logan or Idaho. I remember it as a place for hamburgers and fried chicken. 

I asked my grandgirls if they'd ever been to a drive-in where you ordered from your car and had a person deliver the food to your window. They immediately mentioned Sonic Drive-Inn. Growing up, I only knew of Maddox and Hire's in Salt Lake City. That was part of what made it fun. 
It was cold, in the 20s, so the drive-inn concept was a bit chilly. We kept the car running and the heater going. 

I also ordered a home brewed root beer and enjoyed it. Less fizzy and more mellow. 
Maddox is known for its fried chicken, which is skinless, a recipe developed by I.B. Maddox in 1949. The flour must have corn meal in it. We ordered a chicken basket and asked for all thighs and got four of them. The thighs came with a home-made roll, some raspberry butter and a scone. I ate one thigh, as did one of my granddaughters, and the other granddaughter had the other two thighs and the roll and scone. She really liked the roll and scone, I didn't try them. I was really surprised by the chicken. I hadn't remembered it was skinless, which totally changes the taste and texture. It was relatively moist, because it was a thigh, but I would not order a breast, confirmed by other reviews I've seen. I think it would be dreadfully dry. It was fun to try again, but I'll pass on it in the future. 
I ordered a buffalo burger. I was thinking of Antelope Island and all of the local bison, figuring it might be fresh and local. It came with a squared Wendy-like patty on a bun with a little bit of lettuce, a few pickles, a mixture of ketchup and mustard and a small slice of cheese. It was a big disappointment, a view shared by a burger connoisseur I found on-line.  I didn't like the combination of condiments and the burger was quite dry and dominated by bun. 

Each order came with fries or onion rings. I got the onion rings and special orders of fry sauce which are $.25 extra. The onion rings are all breading and no onion. 
My other granddaughter got a cheese burger and fries. She shared some fries and they were very good: thick and salty. 
All in all, I would probably only give it a 3 on a scale of 5, yet it remains a place that I and others talk about when Brigham City is mentioned. Although I have no desire to go back, if I am ever passing through Brigham City again and I'm hungry, I'll probably stop there, and I'll probably order some fried chicken and complain that it is not as good as a remember it. It is just one of those things: a fond childhood memory that I have to keep going back to. 

At any rate, it was fun to experience it again with my grandgirls. On the way out of town, on our way to Antelope Island, we saw a huge group of elk  in a field and on the slopes of a mountain, also being fed hay. It looked like there were as many or more than we'd seen at Hardware Ranch. 
Elk at White Peaks Ranch, just off the side of the road. 
I just Googled it and found that we'd seen a private elk herd owned by White Peaks Ranch, which has 800 head of elk. They focus on bull elk and sell the antlers in Eastern Asia where they are ground up and used for medicinal purposes, such as an aphrodisiac. They also sell private, guided and guaranteed elk hunts. I was recently talking to the supplier of exotic meats I frequent and he mentioned he bought his elk meat from a ranch in Utah. This could be the place, although there are other private elk ranches. 

1 comment:

  1. It's a sad day when present reality doesn't live up to past memories. The fries look good!