By GWEN SISSON
One of Starkville’s favorite restaurants has received national recognition as one of the Best Lunches in the nation.
In Maxim’s 2011 Food and Drink Awards, The Little Dooey was in the list of top-five Best Lunches in the nation.
The restaurant was the only Mississippi-based restaurant listed in the nominations in all categories.
Other restaurants listed in magazine’s Best Lunches includes Flip Burger Boutique in Atlanta, Ga.; Din Tai Fung in Arcadia, Calif.; Fumi’s Kahuku Shrimp Truck in Oahu, Hawaii; and Town Spa Pizza in Stoughton, Mass.
Listed in the magazine is a quote from Kirk Herbstreit, college football analyst and cohost of ESPN College Gameday, about The Little Dooey: “You wouldn’t even know the original Little Dooey was a restaurant — it looks like an old house — but that only adds to the mystique. It has fried tomatoes, fried catfish — fried everything. I always get some chicken and brisket. The texture of the meat is amazing — it’s so well cooked. And they have a homemade hot sauce, called Dooey sauce, that I love. Whenever we’re in town I stop in.”
The Little Dooey recently received Best Barbeque in the Best of Starkville Awards, from Starkville Daily News.
And the restaurant was also received first place for Best Barbeque in the Best of Mississippi 2011 Awards from Mississippi Magazine.
Barry Wood, owner of The Little Dooey, said he is grateful for the recognition, but the secret to his success can be found in two places.
“I give God all the credit,” Wood said. “He has blessed us with good people who know how to cook. We have valuable employees who have been with us for 20 to 25 years. That just doesn’t happen very often in the restaurant business.”
Wood said valuable employees play an important role in everything that is successful at The Little Dooey.
He said the same women who made slaw for the restaurant in 1985, is making slaw today.
“These people care about the food and about our customers,” Wood said. “You can taste the pride they put into everything they make.”
Jack Holland, general manager for The Little Dooey, said the recognition means a lot to the restaurant.
“It tells us we have a good product that appeals to a lot of people,” Holland said. “For over 25 years, we have been creating a solid product with good service. That means a lot.”
The Little Dooey is located at 100 Fellowship St. in Starkville and is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday.