When you think of gas-stations fare, chances are nachos, lukewarm hot dogs and donuts come to mind. But there are several gas stations across the country that will have you doing a double take. Whether these stops fuel your road trip or are the sole inspiration of your travels, these gourmet gas stations will surprise you in a very good way.
1. Rations – Wilson, Wyoming
Come summertime, particularly around lunch, there's always a line out the door at Rations, a Southern-inspired restaurant inside of the Basecamp gas station. It comes as no surprise, with menu items like the falafel salad, fried chicken sandwich and smoked brisket, which is made using an old-school, off-set, wood-burning smoker.
“We’ve tried really hard to flip on its head what you think of when you think of a gas station,” says Jimmy Fraser, the general manager of Basecamp. “The dichotomy and juxtaposition of it all has really been fun. We love that you can get your tank filled, buy a quart of oil, a snickers bar, and have a six-course dinner with a bottle of wine picked out by our in house sommelier, all in the same building.”
Don’t forget the sloshies (aka alcohol-infused slushies), natural wine on tap and take-home dinners. There’s also locally made cheeses, craft beer and kombucha. And you can’t beat the nearby attractions: Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Grand Teton National Park and the Snake River.
2. AllTown Fresh – Plymouth, Massachusetts
Popular menu items at AllTown Fresh include the chili chicken bowl made with grilled chicken, broccoli, red cabbage, carrots, quinoa and hot honey chili lime; the Spicy Tom sandwich, which comes with roasted turkey breast, avocado, smokehouse bacon, cheddar, lettuce, tomato and spicy chipotle aioli on a ciabatta bun and the Southwest Scramble, made with cage-free eggs with cream, roasted peppers, onions, cilantro, lime, black bean smash and salsa roja. Drooling yet?
Top it off with a ViTea Kombucha (flavors on tap include Strawberry Sage and Peachmint), and you’re good to go. Before you leave, grab some local honey, cheese, jam and fresh-baked bread for the road. Oh and a bean-to-cup coffee to go. The beans are locally roasted and pressed right in front of you under five bars of pressure for maximum flavor. Nearby pitstops include Plimouth Plantation (an outdoor museum) and Plymouth Rock.
3. Jordan Springs Market – Stephenson, Virginia
Chow down on the Valley’s best BBQ, wings and chili at Jordan Springs Market, about an hour from DC. Crowd pleasers include the brisket grilled cheese (the brisket is smoked for 15 hours), the Alabama smoked chicken wings and the BBQ Sundae, which comes with pulled pork served on top of baked beans and topped with creamy homemade cole slaw. Thanks to the ethanol-free gas, it’s not uncommon to see antique cars fill up at the pumps.
4. Parker's Market Urban Gourmet – Savannah, Georgia
Parker’s Market Urban Gourmet, on Drayton Street in Savannah’s National Historic Landmark District, will wow you in so many ways. The first thing you’ll notice is the unique exterior; it’s a renovated automobile dealership with Mediterranean-style architecture. Menu items range from mac and cheese to egg casserole to curry chicken salad. Post chow-down, stroll over to River Street, City Market, Broughton Street, Forsyth Park, the Telfair Museum of Art and Savannah Civic Center.
5. The Station – Charleston, South Carolina
The Station at Freshfields Village on Johns Island is a foodie destination, no doubt. Believe it or not, it’s known as one of the best delis in the Charleston area. Fill up your tank and then fill up on buttermilk chicken sandwiches, fried okra or a breakfast burrito filled with honey chicken, egg and cheese. Spend the rest of the day checking out the Angel Oak Tree, Charleston Tea Plantation, bike trails and coastal hikes. Don’t forget to snap a selfie in front of the 1950s John Deere gas pumps.