Big Ed’s is one of the historical institutions of Oak Ridge, TN. I’m not sure when exactly Big Ed’s opened it’s doors, but it’s definitely the pizza place that’s been around longest in Oak Ridge, since when I lived there I knew several people that had been swearing by Big Ed’s pizza for at least 3 generations. There are a lot of reasons to go to Big Ed’s. The pizza is one of them, being a contender for the best pizza in Oak Ridge (however, as one coworker of mine would say, that’s “damning with faint praise”, the rest of the pizza in town is pretty marginal). The other draws are the gritty ambiance (shown here, just the right amount of “dank”, and a bunch of TV, sports, and military banners that have been hanging probably at least as long as I’ve been alive). The friendly service. The catering to the little kids watching them make pizzas while hoping for a spare piece of pepperoni to get hurled to them. The very cheap beer. The decades of multilingual intercontinental graffiti in the men’s room. In other words, Big Ed’s is the epitome of a “Pizza Joint”…
Where Offbeat Eats has been:
Every once in a while, instead of the standard restaurant review, it’s nice to take a few steps back and discuss broader food topics, or those sorts of things that don’t really lend themselves to a review, per se. With this being my first visit to Britiain since 2008 during "summer" (in this case, the trailing edge of it), I was able to finally try one of those British traditions of summer, the "99 Flake". Okay, at this point, my UK readers are probably saying to themselves, “Great, now he’s rambling on about 99 Flakes. What’s next, the finer points of Jaffa Cakes?” While my US and other readers are probably asking themselves, “WTF is a 99 Flake?” Well, the 99 Flake is a standard British dairy treat. At it’s most basic, it’s basically what us Yanks call as soft serve cone, with a large dollop of soft serve ice cream served on one of those wafer cones. And, to top it off, the very pièce de résistance is the insertion of a half-length Cadbury Flake into the ice cream.