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Restaurant Road Trip

West End Café

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A good place to eat can usually be found by following the locals.

And residents in West Union fill the booths at the West End Café every lunch and dinnertime.

"We know everybody in this town. Just about," Beth Barnes, manager at the West End Café, said.

At around three on a Tuesday afternoon, Beth Barnes, manager of the West End Café, finally gets a little break.

"I delivered at lunchtime today, and I was just in, out, in, out. Just in to get the food and back out."

That business is something Barnes wouldn't change.
And during the slower time between the hectic lunch hour…
And the dinner rush is when Barnes gives me a tour of the kitchen…

"And we have a breakfast bar today. All you can eat breakfast bar. We have everything on it. Breakfast casserole, scrambled eggs, biscuits and gravy, home fries, sausage, bacon, ham," Barnes said.

And the smells of crispy bacon and syrup, not to mention a growling stomach.
The daily specials are what keep customers coming back.

 "You have so many people in here that want to get their food and get out, because they've got to get back to work. And, you know, that's why we have so many specials at lunchtime. So, our specials are really fast so they can get it and get out," Barnes said.

Of course the food is integral to the Café's recipe to success, but there is one other very important ingredient.

"I think they really come back because we make them feel at home here," Barnes said.

Customers agree.

"What's nice here is that everybody kind of knows each other. So, it's really very friendly and you get a chance to see people you haven't seen in a while. And say hello to people. It's really nice. So, they treat you really nice here. They treat you like family," Mary Daugherty, who stops by the Café a couple of times a week, said.

That home-style feel goes right to the way the food is prepared.

Even the potato chips are homemade.

"You wouldn't believe how many potatoes we use," Barnes said.

Barnes says customers stop by just for an order of the crispy, seasoned chips.

Some make a trip for something sweet.

"We have a really famous coconut cream pie that's homemade," Barnes said.

The coconut cream pie and the café's other famous pie, peanut butter, often sellout, so it is best to get to the café early.

The West End Café is located at 512 W. Main Street in West Union. It is open Monday to Saturday 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

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