Awesome Tomatoes

Feature: Fried Green Tomato

Critics 83% Audience 91%

Movie Info

2010: It was plenty busy on a Saturday at lunch time, but I was taking my order to go. They allow you to order by the quarter pound, so I went for a pork spare rib, a beef rib, and some brisket slices. The knife man clued me in that they smoke with mesquite. My first bite of beef rib tasted like acrid meat. The fat had soaked up too much of the bitter flavor from the mesquite wood and had tainted the flavor of the fatty parts of the rib. The top of the rib, however, had a good smoky flavor and a nice punch of saltiness from the rub. The salty rub was also present on the fatty brisket slices—the meat was falling apart tender and plenty moist but overcooked. The decimated pork ribs were also overcooked, and they couldn’t even hold their shape. There was just too much fat to wade through to enjoy these ribs.

Genre: Southern, Comfort Food, Comedy Synopsis: The Whistle Stop Café it ain’t, but the Fried Green Tomato, on the corner of South First and Live Oak, holds the deep South dear to its crunchy, plump heart. The trailer serves up first-rate junk food featuring the signature fare, a thin yet sturdy slice of the rotund fruit deep-fried and gleaming with goodness. The tomato has mastered this role (we’ve heard the words “Oscar-worthy” growing through the grapevine), and though this is more of a character study, the plot is certainly furthered by her supporting actors, homemade pimento cheese and everyone’s favorite heartthrob, the bacon strip. When the three come together, good times and hilarity ensue. Though some critics have already sputtered all through the gutter about the film’s being “wincingly overwrought,” we delighted in the overall cheesiness, which sent our stomachs aflutter. Rated: PG-13, for mild off-color heirloom humor and a few adult-size calorific sandwiches. Distributor: Costco, unfortunately, is the supplier of the trailer’s bland wheat bread. Nice, thick, slices of lightly toasted sourdough, or even buttermilk bread, could have won one of these performances Best Sammy of the Year. Running Time: Less than 15 minutes. Or, if you want to linger, there are nice tables, and the SOFI trailer park is dog-friendly. Just watch out for the flies. In Theaters: Showing now! Box Office: Under $10. Cast: Caprese Salad. A few Italians might roll over in their graves if they saw this concoction, but more likely, they’d push aside that dirt and dig in: The “salad” was that good. It’s hard to go wrong with a stack of fried green tomatoes and fresh, melty mozzarella, topped with pesto and a sweet balsamic reduction. A bit on the oily side, but still a nice twist on a household name. BL(FG)T Sandwich. The BLT was taken to the next level with fried green tomatoes, crisp romaine lettuce, and huge bacon strips. We would have liked to see a little more of that ranch dressing in the performance, though, before this one can earn the “FG” in its name. Dirty South Sandwich. No, Matthew McConaughey is not in this movie. This is a different kind of dirty Southerner, with (surprise!) fried green tomatoes, bacon, pickled jalapeños, ranch, and pimento cheese. Reminiscent of Mary Louise Parker in a movie with a similar name, the cheese shone in this role—pink, alluring, and a little trashy. (In other words, we could see this pimento-studded star dealing weed in the future.) Supporting cast. The crab cake slider was clean sold out by the time we got there, and we’ll have to leave the pimento cheese sandwich, the “local” salad, and the FGTs Foster (green tomatoes fried in pancake batter with rum sauce and vanilla ice cream) for our next feature. SOFI Food Court, 603 W. Live Oak (817-937-6730). Open Mon–Sat 11–3 & 5–8. Closed Sun. Posted by Megan Giller