Taste Of The Town ESPN Segment

At an ESPN college football seminar back in 2007, I came up with an idea of how to merge together two of my great passions: college football and food. When I broadcast a game in any college town, I like to search out unique local places to eat. What if we taped a short segment on Friday featuring my restaurant of choice and aired it during the game on Saturday night? We could call it Todd’s Taste of the Town and have a little fun with it!

The very first Taste of the Town segment showcased Mac’s Drive In in Clemson, SC, and it aired during the Florida State – Clemson game on Labor Day 2007. After only a few weeks, the segment’s popularity began to soar. People all over the country loved Todd’s Taste of the Town! All of a sudden, people who recognized me in airports or hotels no longer asked my opinion about an upcoming game, but instead where was I going to eat?

What I quickly discovered was that while many people love football, almost everyone loves to eat! I also realized that our segment struck a chord with people bringing back memories of college years, visits to campus, tailgating and family experiences. After nearly twenty years of working hard to carve a niche as a football analyst, in a matter of weeks I had become more known as a “food guy.”

“Food guy” or “Football guy”, it doesn’t matter. I love them both. I love sharing my football insights with fans through our broadcasts and I enjoy sharing my favorite places to eat in college towns across the country through Todd’s Taste of the Town.

The 2013 college football season is right around the corner and with it, year number 7 for Taste of the Town. Let’s tee it up and kick it off!

Locations

2007

Mac’s Drive In (Clemson, SC) cheeseburger steak smothered in gravy and grilled onions
The Diner (State College, PA) grilled sticky buns &ice cream
Archibald’s (Northport, AL) BBQ ribs
Bally Hoos (Gainesville,FL) grilled grouper & bananas foster
Calhoun Corner (Clemson, SC) sausage and shrimp & grits
Catfish Hole (Fayetteville, AR) fried catfish & hush puppies
Walk Ons (Baton Rouge, LA) Blackened gator and Catfish Acadiana
Litton’s (Knoxville, TN) bacon cheeseburger and fries
Beppe & Gianni’s (Eugene, OR) baked salmon and  mushroom ravioli
Yesterday’s (Columbia, SC) Arkansas Traveler & Mac -n- cheese
Camp Washington Chili Parlor (Cincinnati, OH) Five-way Chili
Byron’s Smokehouse (Auburn, AL) BBQ meat platter
Colasessano’s (Fairmont, WV) pepperoni rolls

2008

The Apple Pan (Los Angeles, CA) Steak burger & Hickory burger
B’s Barbecue (Greenville, NC) chopped pork BBQ
Chinook’s (Seattle, WA) plank-roasted salmon with risotto
Creole & Seafood Shack (Auburn, AL) gumbo & fried green tomato Po Boy
Weaver D’s (Athens, GA) fried chicken, Mac & cheese, sweet potato souffle
Mickie’s Dairy Bar (Madison, WI) The Scrambler
Avenue Bar (Madison, WI) fried cod and deep-fried cheese curds
Blue Marlin (Columbia, SC) fried green tomatoes & shrimp and grits
Ye Old Steakhouse (Knoxville, TN) Strip steak & Woodshed potatoes
Van’s Pig Stand (Norman, OK) brisket, ribs and pulled pork
Comella’s (Chestnut Hill, MA) Mother K’s Mess
The Waysider (Tuscaloosa, AL) biscuits, grits & country ham
Berkey Creamery (State College, PA) homemade ice cream
Philippe’s (Los Angeles, CA) French Dip sandwich
Yuca’s (Los Angeles, CA) steak & pork soft tacos
The Peppermill (Las Vegas, NV) Peppermill Omlette & hash browns

2009

Cabo’s Island Grill (Tallahassee, FL) Fish Tostada
Doe’s Eat Place (Fayetteville, AR) tamales and porterhouse steak
Bruno’s Pizza (W Lafayette, IN) fried pizza dough
Chandler’s Deli (Knoxville, TN) fried chicken, Mac & cheese, green beans, broccoli casserole
Salt Lick BBQ (Driftwood, TX) meat platter & blackberry cobbler a la mode
Rama Jama’s (Tuscaloosa, AL) SEC Champ Breakfast
Blue Heron (Clemson, SC) pan-fried grouper Oscar style with risotto
Misty’s (Lincoln, NE) prime rib & signature mashed potatoes
Sammy’s (Baton Rouge, LA) Shrimp Bienville& Crawfish
Restaurant Tyler (Starkville, MS) bison meatloaf & pepper jack Mac & cheese
La Teresita (Tampa, FL) Spanish – Cuban combination

2010

Dead End Barbecue (Knoxville, TN) George’s Competition Chicken
The Little Dooey (Starkville, MS) Pulled Pork and Fried Catfish
The Vegetable Medley (Columbia, SC) Fried chicken and sides
Satchel’s (Gainesville, FL) Deep dish pizza and salad
Thurman Cafe (Columbus, OH) The Thurminator burger
Herwig’s Austrian Bistro (State College, PA) Wienerschnitzel
The Golden Harvest (Lansing, MI) Breakfast Burrito & Homefries
Fletcher’s Corny Dogs (Texas State Fair-Dallas) Corny Dog
Nick’s In The Sticks (Tuscaloosa, AL) Bacon-wrapped Filet
Local Boyz Hawaiian Cafe (Corvallis, OR) Sweet Shoyu Chicken&rice

2011

The Waffle Shop (State College, PA) Greek Omlette and Homefries
Herman’s Rib House (Fayetteville,AR) Prime Rib
Pannie-George’s Kitchen (Auburn,AL) Fried chicken & Mac & Cheese
Jaxson’s Ice Cream Parlor (Dania Beach, FL) The Kitchen Sink Sundae
Triple XXX Family Restaurant(W. Lafayette,IN) Boilermaker Pete& Duane Purvis All-American burgers
Nancy’s Home Cooking (Columbus,OH) Chicken & Noodles
Momma Dean’s Soul Food (Fayetteville,AR) Twice-cooked Chicken
Tiffany’s (Noble, OK) Chicken-fried Steak

2012

The Chef (Manhattan, KS) Chicken-fried Steak & eggs

2013

BBQ on the Brazos (Cresson, TX)
Mama’s Boy (Athens, GA)
Pawleys Front Porch (Columbia, SC)
Georges Restaurant (Baton Rouge, LA)
City Cafe (Northport, AL)
Stanford Campus (Stanford, CA)
Alabama Tailgating (Tuscaloosa, AL)
Holland Peanut Store (Holland, MI)
El Ray De Las Fritas (Miami, FL)
Bin 612 (Starkville, MS)
Big Bad Breakfast (Oxford, MS)
DeFalco’s Italian Deli & Grocery (Phoenix, AZ)