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A Nod To The Five And Dime-100 Dishes To Eat In Alabama Before You Die

My second “Two-fer Tuesday”  with two dishes at Carlisle Drug Soda Fountain in Alexander City.

  • MEGabite #39 and 64 counting down and Limeade #40/63 Chicken salad

In the era of Wal-Mart and Target, the five and dime with a soda fountain are much like finding a wheat penny, very few exist. The moment that I stepped into Carlisle Drug to play “My 100,” I had an unexpected visit to my childhood .

My experience with trying these two dishes reminded me of a time when I was a pre-teen living in Appleton, Wisconsin. I would save my allowance and take the bus downtown to the Kresge’s store, sit on the counter stool, and order a sandwich and malt. I would usually be goofing off with a friend, yet we knew our neighbors were present, we behaved. This was my wanderlust in its pre-puberty stage. I had not visited these memories in some time and it makes me smile to know that there is a little girl in Alexander City, Alabama who will someday have the same memory.


I looked at a wonderful display of artifacts and photos from a by-gone era

In 2014, Carlisle Drug recently celebrated its 100-year anniversary and yet she doesn’t look a day over two



Inside, I found a gift shop, a boutique and an old-fashioned soda fountain in this Main Street Building.   Reminiscent of those five and dime stores once found throughout the United States, this place is a story of survival. I found a small seating area where people come and go. Alexander City is near the beautiful and popular Lake Martin area.


Wind Creek Stat Park view from the tower

Local people as well as area guests visit this quaint setting for a wonderful bite and a treat.


On “The 100” list, the chicken salad may be ordered as a plate or a sandwich and the limeade I ordered the plate and as soon as I ordered this, I wished that I had ordered the sandwich.   The sandwich comes on plain white sandwich bread served with those lays potato chips. Regret.



While poking around, I found a story that the wife of pharmacist. Mrs. Ellie Carlisle used to make this sandwich and send them to work with her husband; and so it began.   It is said that Mrs. Carlisle even made her own mayonnaise. This is a creamy chicken salad and appears to have eggs and pickles in the salad. Tasty indeed. Unpretentious. Why mess with success. And yes it was fantastic with the limeade.

Fresh-squeezed limeade done just right will have that balance between a pucker and a kiss. I can imagine drinking this on a warm summer day before a.c. (air conditioning.) This beverage is said to be among the best in all of Alabama and even has it’s own fan page on Facebook. $2.19 gets you a refreshing and wonderful change from the ordinary.



MEGastars: 3 *** for each dish

Limeade MEGastars3 *** Far a good tasting limeade and Chicken Salad 3 MEGastars ***

MEGatrip down memory land=Priceless


  1. Try these two dishes together. They make a cute couple.
  2. Mon-Saturday 9-5
  3. Don’t know what a five and dime store is? In the old days, The Great 5 cents store was opened in 1879 by Mr. Frank Woolworth, later he added 10 cents to the name and items. At one time, you could pick up mascara and a garden shovel and top it off with a grilled cheese sandwich and a milkshake. Check out this page on pinterest-who knew?                                    
  4. Save some room and bring friends. I was flying solo on this site visit but wish I had a few friends to nibble on other classic diner foods such as; egg and olive sandwich, the pimento cheese sandwich, the macaroni and cheese and of course the malts, sundaes banana splits, hot fudge brownie Sundaes
  5. The boutique had a lot of really nice and reasonably priced items.   I walked out with a bag.
  6. This Alexander City area has 5 Dishes on “The 100.” Visit this gorgeous part of Alabama and stay for a few days.
  7. This area holds many outdoor opportunities. Save time for walking off any extra calories and don’t forget to support beautiful Alabama State Parks.
  8. I did not find the recipe on line. If I had to try to recreate this recipe, I would try this strategy. 12 ozs of chicken, 3 tbsp. of finely chopped onion, 2 tbsp of FINELY chopped celery, 1-2 large hard boiled eggs, chopped, ½ cup Heilemann’s mayonnaise (or homemade) 1 tbsp of sweet pickle relish, ¼ tsp salt and 1/8 tsp white pepper. This salad will not come with the five and dime experience. 

    This MEGabites and MEGastars description is found at the bottom of each post. If you are new to my 100 Dishes in Alabama escapade, this may be helpful.  *100 Dishes to eat in Alabama before you die is a compilation of food to chow down on Bama style. Thanks to Tourism Alabama, my Alabama bucket list just became a little easier. I am going to have some fun while making my way like Ms. Pacman, in yet another state that I call home.   You too may pick up the brochure at Alabama Tourism stops or download the alphabetical brochure that begins in Abbeville and ends in York. From the little old diner to the white cloth joint, it is an opportunity to explore and experience pride in the food from restaurateurs who are dedicated to local food with some Alabama style. From the local BBQ cook to James Beard recipients, you too will take a culinary trip across scenic and historical Alabama. From this list, I select visits based on convenience of location and they are in no particular order. I already have a few favorites and perhaps when I finish this list, I will rank my favorite dishes.

    I use a 5 MEGastar system. I am not a food critic, just Meg, a curious traveler, with an interest in trying different foods and sharing my two cents on my experience. I try to follow my star system so that I may be fair to the wonderful dishes on this list.

    • *meh food. Just wasn’t good. Maybe the food came from a can. The place was not one that I would want to send someone to show pride in Alabama.   This has happened to me a few times and it is a difficult write.
    • ** passable – the food was ok and above happened but the place or vice versa
    • *** good but not outstanding or unique
    • **** Very tasty dish AND meets one of the definitions set forth by Alabama Foods/Tourism, of local food and/OR highlights Alabama Pride.
    • ***** I actually died, went to heaven and came back when I ate the dish. OR, something is very unique, something you cannot get anywhere else



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