Updated June 27 2020.
Just a quick drive from Colonial Williamsburg or Newport News you’ll find adorable, charming, tasty Smithfield! It’s known for its ham, but the whole region is also known for peanuts. Plus it’s the South, so you know there will be fried everything and sweet treats to keep you cool on those hot summer days. Get ready, because we’re about to find just what you need to eat in Smithfield, Virginia!
It’s first on the list for a reason! The pigs used to eat the peanut vines, giving the pig products a distinctive sweet taste! (You learn a lot of fun things about pigs when you visit Smithfield!) You will definitely be able to find pork in your favorite form while you’re in town, so whether it’s bacon, sausage, spiral-cut ham, or a honey-ham and cheese sandwich like me, eat that ham!
Read next: What to Eat in Smithfield
So, the difference between Virginia peanuts and other peanut species is that Virginia peanuts are larger! There are typically two Virginia peanuts in a pod instead of three peanuts, and you can get them in an unbelievable combination of flavors! I love them chocolate covered, pralined, honey roasted, or anything sweet, but you can also get cajun spiced, creole style, Indian curry, and more! Don’t pass on the peanuts when you’re in town.
Fried Green Tomatoes
I’m about to shock you: I don’t care for fried chicken, and I’m not a fan of fried fish. But fry up my veggies, and I’m so there! Fried green tomatoes are almost cliche, but it for good reason: they’re delicious! Our waitress at Taste of Smithfield even told us that the restaurant manager went to the Smithfield Farmers’ Market just days before and got a huge bag of green tomatoes—these! It doesn’t get fresher, better, or more Southern than right around the corner.
Pimento Grilled Cheese with Bacon
I mean, if the fried green tomatoes aren’t enough for you, this certainly should be! Everyone loves grilled cheese, but not everyone has tried a house-made pimento grilled cheese with Smithfield bacon! They call it “The Southern” sandwich. It’s warm, it’s wonderful, and it could be served with tomato soup.
No Southern summer’s day is complete without an ice cream pit-stop! My friend Amanda said she was still too full from lunch, but we both agreed I was a bad influence and she got some, too! Smithfield Ice Cream had 32 flavors to choose from, and while it was the hardest decision to make of the day, we each chose a winner: Camo for me (described as a “heroic mix of toasty smores flavors with peanut butter icing) and Dark Chocolate Raspberry Swirl!
Which one is your favorite? I can’t wait to head back down to Southern Virginia for more!
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