To kick off the Hub City’s third annual Restaurant Week, officials from Visit Hattiesburg recently launched a new Hatties[burger] Trail that allows visitors and residents to experience a variety of hamburger offerings at 33 restaurants around the city.
A ceremonial ribbon cutting for the trail, which runs from west Hattiesburg to downtown, was held Oct. 12 at the Hattiesburg Visitor’s Center in front of Lake Terrace Convention Center.
“Fulfilling our mission of attracting visitors to Hattiesburg, we are always exploring best practices in the travel and tourism industry,” said Marlo Dorsey, executive director of Visit Hattiesburg. “Nationwide, foodie trails and tours are highly popular, and it’s certainly a big growth opportunity for us. Hattiesburg’s culinary sector draws people from far and wide, and this new addition of the Hatties[burger] Trail is now one more delicious and fun reason to visit the Hub City.”
Hatties[burger] Trail stops in west Hattiesburg include, but are not limited, to Pier 98 Bar & Grill, Cotton Blues Kitchen & Marketplace, Po-Boy Express and Sidelines Sports Café. Midtown includes several restaurants in The District at Midtown – including Ed’s Burger Joint – along with Strick’s BBQ, Burger Theory, Sully’s Tavern and more.
The Avenues features restaurants such as Gold Post, Colludium Brewing Company, Petra Café and Murky Waters. Downtown Hattiesburg offers stops such as Coney Island Café, Art of Roux Food Truck, and Triangle Seafood.
Robert St. John, owner of The Midtowner, Crescent City Grill and Ed’s Burger Joint, said he is honored that Visit Hattiesburg chose those restaurants to highlight on the Hatties[burger] Trail.
“One of the best-kept secrets in town is the burger at Crescent City,” he said. “But at Ed’s, it’s what we do, and what we do best. At Ed’s we use Certified Angus beef with the two-patty method.
“When you use two patties, there is more surface area to grill and that’s where all of the flavor is developed. We appreciate the good folks at Visit Hattiesburg for showcasing all of the great burgers that are available in our area, and we are proud to be among that number.”
A full list of stops can be found online at www.visithburg.org, and brochures detailing the trail and its stops can be picked up outside the Hattiesburg Visitor’s Center.
“Download a copy of the new brochure, and then go try some hamburgers here in Hattiesburg,” said Kristen Brock, director of programs and promotions at Visit Hattiesburg. “We want to know what your favorite is, so once you’ve tried a few restaurants, be sure to show us on social media, and use the hashtag #eathuburg.
“We invite everybody to officially join us on the trail, tour Hattiesburg and try our namesake food item. We’re excited to cut the ribbon on the official new culinary trail of Hattiesburg, with many more to come.”
Restaurant Week runs from Oct. 12-18 and is designed to attract foodies from across the region and support sales for Hattiesburg’s eateries. Visitors and residents are encouraged to enjoy the week’s overall theme, OctoberFEAST, and favorite menu items and Restaurant Week exclusive specials will be featured at more than 40 Hattiesburg restaurants.
A Foodie Guide showcasing the week’s feature menu items can be found at visithburg.org/eatlocal/.
“(Those restaurants) have special features, menu items, and delights that they can’t normally get on a regular week in Hattiesburg,” Brock said. “We want people to go out and support our small businesses, and support our locally-owned restaurants who really need our support right now in Hattiesburg.”
In addition the Hatties[burger] Trail, Restaurant Week also will feature two culinary crawls. The first will be held the evening of Oct. 13 in downtown Hattiesburg and will include four restaurants throughout that area, while the second one will be held the evening of Oct. 14 in Newpointe Shopping Center.