Just two hours north of Atlanta, the Dillard House is a family style southern cooking restaurant located in the Little Tennessee River Valley of North Georgia in the town of Dillard. It has been in the same family since its creation in 1917.
The restaurant has twice received a Southern Living Magazine Reader's Choice Award, is Zagat rated and has been featured in numerous news stories.
The food is delicious and plentiful, served on platters and meant to be shared by the whole table.
The price: $24.95 for adults and $11.95 for kids.
The quantity. It is all you can eat, and though there are many healthier choices on the menu, that fried food can't be very good for you.
Just like any business establishment, the Dillard House may not always be perfect. There will always be a certain turnover, especially with seasonal hires, even if the restaurant does work hard to screen and train its employees. However, both times that my family has eaten here have been excellent. The staff was friendly and prompt.
Their menu changes regularly, but always has a great selection of meats including fried or barbecued chicken, Virginia or country ham, country steak and prime rib. Their sides include such southern staples as green and lima beans, glazed carrots, corn tomatoes as well as rolls and cornbread (marvelous). You can top off your meal with a tasty cobbler a la mode. There is no buffet line; platters of your selections are brought to the table to share.
Although the $24.95 price might seem a little steep, it's no more than the cost at a nice (read fancy) restaurant in the city. Plus, it is all you can eat. Unlike other buffets, you're not constantly admonished to take only what you'll eat in one sitting. The staff will box up your leftovers. We were able to eat an entire lunch from those leftovers.
Everything I ate was good, but I must highly recommend the fried chicken, lima beans and cornbread. I don't know the recipe or cooking process, but the fried chicken seemed lighter than others that I've eaten. I could have made an entire meal from the cornbread.
The Bottom Line
Don't let the location fool you. If you go into the Dillard House expecting a simple and inexpensive country diner, you'll be disappointed. It is a popular, nationally known award winning establishment. Expect a wait at certain times of the year, but I believe you'll find it worth the wait. If you are in the area, I really recommend giving them a try.
Dillard House Restaurant
768 Franklin Street
Dillard GA, 30537
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Disclaimer: I visited Dillard House Restaurant anonymously, paid for my own meal, and was not compensated for my visit or review.