Picket House Pig Out

Our friends Bob and Beth recommended that we visit Picket House, a unique restaurant located in Woodville, Texas.  Woodville is just outside of nowhere, and not on the typical tourist trail, but it was on our route.

Picket House is part of a heritage village that gets mixed reviews, so we didn’t check it out.  It’s located off the highway on a side road, easy to miss, but we found it on our 2nd pass.  The old building is rustic outside and in, as if the clock has been turned back 80 years, but it’s clean and comfortable.

A building with a red roof, yellow paint, and a large porch with white posts and railings and the words 'Picket House' painted on the front

Picket House has Rustic Country Charm

A sign at the entrance explains the “Boarding House Eatin’ Rules”.  Patrons pay in advance ($10 each), are assigned a seat (which may be at a table shared with others if it’s busy), fix their own drinks, and clear their own dishes.  Food is served family style and is ‘all you can eat’.  Leftovers go to the hogs.

A brown sign on a yellow background with 5 rules that are summarized in the blog text above

Boarding House Eatin’ Rules

Although Picket House is often very busy, it wasn’t on Thursday at 1 PM when we arrived.  There were only a few tables occupied, including one with a very old, frail, African-American woman eating alone wearing a hat.  I was dying to talk to her but couldn’t get up the nerve.  The walls of the two dining rooms are blanketed with old circus posters and the tables have checkered table clothes.  The combination creates a unique and interesting atmosphere.

A white wall covered with circus posters behind 2 tables with red and white checkered tableclothes

Circus posters on every wall

Diane seated at our table with circus posters on the wall behind

Our Table

Our food was served quickly.  We barely had enough time to get a glass of tea (a classic southern beverage served cold over ice, typically unsweetened), and some condiments (pickled jalapenos, beets, and watermelon rind).  Neither Diane nor I had ever had pickled watermelon rind, and we had to ask the waitress what it was!  The menu is the same every day – fried chicken, chicken and dumplings, mashed potatoes and gravy, greens, beans, biscuits (with butter and optionally honey or cane syrup), coleslaw, peach cobbler, tea, and coffee.  The fried chicken and the biscuits were exceptional.

White bowls of food on a red and white checked tablecloth

Southern Food!

I got my money’s worth.  I ate:

  • 6 pieces of fried chicken,
  • 2 helpings of chicken and dumplings,
  • 2 helpings of mashed potatoes and gravy,
  • 1 helping of greens,
  • 1 piece of corn bread,
  • 1 and a half servings of peach cobbler,
  • 3 pieces of pickled watermelon rind,
  • 3 slices of pickled beets,
  • 1 glass of sweet tea,
  • and 3 biscuits with butter, 1 with cane syrup and  honey
A biscuit on a white plate

Biscuit with honey on the right side and cane syrup on the left

Patrick with a biscuit in hand and cobbler dish ont he table

My friends, biscuit and cobbler

I may have overeaten.  I couldn’t breathe fully for 2 hours afterwards without pain.  I didn’t eat again until the next day.

Diane had a good time too, limiting herself to a mere 4 pieces of fried chicken.

Diane wearing burgandy fleece seated a table with coffee, tea, and cobbler

Diane enjoying her meal

Before we left, I met Brenda, one of the cooks.  With her strong accent, she was hard to understand, but she was very friendly.  Although she’s normally responsible for just the fried chicken, today one of the other staff called in sick, so she also made the biscuits (mmmm, biscuits) and the peach cobbler (mmmm, cobbler).

Patrick standing beside Brenda, a short African-American woman wearing a pink t-shirt and red apron and making a peace sign

Brenda and a bigger me

Picket house is heaven for southern hogs.


7 Responses to Picket House Pig Out

  1. Lucy says:

    Good thing you guys do not eat like that everyday!

  2. Annette says:

    The “Dream Machine” is not the only thing that will be rolling down the freeway if you keep eating like that Pat. But sounds yummy!!!

  3. beulah kotzer says:

    sounds so good and I am hungry at the moment as well… hope all is well with your tour and have a great time…

    • Great to hear from you Beulah. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’ll have a few more restaurant posts in the near future that might make your stomach growl. Last night I passed on a peanut butter & bacon milkshake, thinking that might be too crazy, even for me!

  4. I can’t imagine eating all of that…mind you I can’t imaginr doing an Iron man either,- dream big eat boldy dude


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