There was a Saturday not long ago when Marie had to go into work. The girlchild was also gone; her godfather was in town and she went to spend the day with him. I looked at the baby and told him, “It’s just the menfolk today, baby. What do you want to do?”
I am not certain, but I think that he wanted to watch every single Sesame Street clip that they’ve posted to YouTube, and shout “Melmo!” to each one. Unfortunately for him, that was not an option. We packed up a little dish of pasta and a sippy cup and made our way north.
I had an approximate idea of where I wanted to go. There’s a barbecue place in Adairsville that I’d been intending for ages to visit – more about that next time – and while I wasn’t absolutely sure where I wanted to start a drive, I knew that I wanted to end it there. A look around Urbanspoon and Google Maps showed me that a section of GA-53 that I had never seen connects the town of Jasper with I-75, and while I couldn’t find any barbecue restaurants that far up I-575 that I had not previously visited, I did find a promising old burger joint about five miles away from Jasper’s Davis Bar-B-Que.
Quick Burger has been serving this community for nearly fifty years. Unfortunately, the exterior doesn’t show off the old history anymore; what was once a classic white-and-blue roadside attraction has, under the present owner Robin Parsons, been transformed into something modern and a little dull. It’s not quite as merciless an upgrade from the past and into deadly boring like the Dairy-O in Orangeburg, South Carolina suffered, but it is similar.
As for the grub, it is fairly standard roadside fast food, with little to nothing in the way of secret recipes or unusual local specialties. Quick Burger has gained the loyalty of its guests by virtue first of its incredibly good service – staff here doesn’t turn over anywhere like a national fast food chain sees – and also its location. This is actually the closest restaurant to Pickens County High; generations of teenagers have made this their hangout and are likely to continue.
The baby and I shared a very basic burger and fries. It was ordinary fast food, but it was nice to be in a small restaurant well off the beaten path. Nothing special, but perfectly pleasant in its simple way. It was a good place to relax and let a little time pass. It’s definitely a place where the locals eat and travelers don’t hear about.
Interestingly, a little further up the road in Jasper, there is a very similar restaurant to Quick Burger. It is called Speedburger, and it is not open on Saturdays, so I couldn’t compare the food – I expect that it is quite similar – but it also has some glowing reviews from diehards and longtime guests. I enjoyed learning that a place as small as Jasper can provide a comfortable home to two similar locally-owned fast food joints. Since most of the national chains moved out to GA-515 when the Wal-Marts and the like started sprouting, I suppose that it gave the locals room to thrive, and, in their no-frills way, shine a little.
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