Lunch in the city

Yesterday we left our intrepid reporter counting hawks soaring over the hills, sighing over the sights, then merrily singing “Follow the Yellow Brick Road” as she rolled down into Natchez.  The plan was to go to a plantation house’s restaurant for lunch, then stop in its gift shop.

Stanton Hall occupies a full block in the heart of Natchez.  Here is the description featured on the Natchez website:

“When you first get a glimpse of Stanton Hall, it will boggle your mind to know that builder, Dr. Frederick Stanton, paid a mere $83,000 to build this opulent, Greek Revival style mansion, which occupies an entire city block.  Dr. Stanton was an Irish immigrant and he’d originally named the house Belfast, for obvious reasons.  In addition to being a family physician, Stanton was a wealthy planter and cotton merchant.  The house was built in 1857 and is noted for its scale, outstanding marble mantles, and large pier mirrors that give the double parlors infinite appeal.”

We had toured the house on previous visits, and believe me, it lived up to the PR prose.  Ever after, when I see large, fancy mirrors on the HGTV show “If Walls Could Talk”   Stanton Hall’s mirrors  come to mind.  This trip, hunger trumped culture, and the Carriage House Restaurant was our first destination.  Even the side entrance to the yard was elaborate.

See the sign proclaiming the Carriage House hours? 

We didn’t.  It says “OPEN” in large letters.  Read the bottom line…that’s right, “closed Tuesday and Wednesday”.  (It was Wednesday!)

On we went, happily anticipating our lunch adventure.  As you top the steps the house and its magnificent live oak greet you.  (I just love a house that sits on its own hill.  After all, hills were the theme of the road trip.)

Up a short walk, and located behind the house is the Carriage House Restaurant.  Unlike the sometimes fanciful names that are given to eating establishments, this one truly is located in the former carriage house of the home, thus its position at the rear of the block.

It took us just a few short steps to find the place closed.  We were confused at first because people were leaving as we arrived.  However, it was the Rotary’s scheduled lunch, and no general seating happens on Wednesday.

Never mind, only steps away was the gift shop!  This was to be a focused stop, too.  You see, on that former trip to Stanton Hall I had purchased a blue and white Staffordshire plate.  It hung on the kitchen wall in a grouping with plates from two other homes. Then, one day a guest accidentally brushed the Stanton Hall plate as she passed, and it crashed on the floor.  As I told the gift shop lady on Wednesday, I’m just glad it was the Stanton Hall plate that broke, and not the one from Washington’s headquarters in Morristown, NJ.  Now that would be a road trip!

Replacement plate purchased, we returned to the car to find an alternate lunch spot.  I just couldn’t resist one more picture.  We were parked across the street, in front of a simple cottage home.  It was their sidewalk, however, that caught my eye.  Knitters see patterns everywhere!

Next post:  more adventures in Natchez.



  1. Knitnana said,

    November 6, 2009 at 10:12 am

    Oh! I hope you got a lovely lunch anyway…but the sidewalk. OH now that’s lovely. Entrelac?
    Beautiful photos….

  2. AlisonH said,

    November 7, 2009 at 1:05 pm

    Oh, I know that lace pattern! Flame Chevron variation, can’t think of the name. But watch that Fun Fur on the right, it’ll kill ya.

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