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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

‘Better Choices’

G’Marie’s already a local favorite

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It’s not everyday you meet a manager whose staff calls her “Sweetie,” but at G’Marie’s it’s a thing.

“Sweetie,” aka Fonda Davis, is the manager of G’Marie’s and also cooks some of the menu items, but more importantly, she bakes the sweets.

Though G’Marie’s, located at 2130 Greenwood Road, has only been open since November, the restaurant, open for breakfast and lunch, has plenty of regulars that pop in almost daily to enjoy the specials or their own favorites on the menu. Breakfast is served 6 to 11 a.m. Monday through Friday, and lunch is served 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Davis is usually the first friendly smile that pops up from the counter to offer customers a seat or to kid around with her regulars. The regular customers range from health care workers to firemen and even police officers. One of the officers can’t get enough of the meatloaf served on Mondays.

Davis and owner Gladys Bush cook items on the menu and are tight-lipped on the ingredients used in the dishes.

Bush’s broccoli casserole is one such dish. No one knows the recipe except for the crew.

“[The crew] isn’t even allowed to serve it to their family members,” Davis said.

This casserole is one of Bush’s specialties that Davis requests by the pan at their family functions. (Davis and Bush are sisters-inlaw.)

For the casserole, broccoli is mixed with ground beef, cheese, and the rest, Davis said, is love.

The taste of it is addictive and could almost become a main dish on its own.

While some of the Monday regulars opt for the meatloaf, the beef tips are another homestyle flavor many can’t pass up. The beef is slow-cooked until the meat is tender and juicy. The beef is perfectly cushioned on a bed of rice and served with two sides.

As for the sides, Bush knows her vegetables. Bush herself is a vegetarian and prides herself on offering healthy lunch alternatives to go with their motto, “better choices.”

Davis is also big on serving fresh ingredients. “The quality of the meat and the quality of the product – I know what it is,” she said. “We aren’t cutting any corners from what you find at home.”

Another special served on Thursdays is Davis’s smothered pork chops.

“I tell everyone that they are not fork tender; they are spoon tender,” Davis said. “[The pork] has more of a down South, momma’s kitchen-type flavor.”

Davis said right before G’Marie’s opened, both she and Bush considered only doing burgers, which is why some customers go straight for the burger.

The ground beef is about a quarter of a pound patty on a soft white bun. The meat is tender and not too thick but still offers a flavor that could go up against any burger businesses.

While Davis is fine cooking meaty dishes, she appreciates her vegetarian-minded owner.

“Gladys does a lot of what I call ‘gourmet.’ She’s a vegetarian, and she does a lot of marinated crab claws and veggie burgers. She tends to sway to more on the healthy side; I tend to sway to whatever I want to eat.”

For those wanting a lighter lunch, Davis recommends the chicken salad. This salad is light but packed with a generous amount of chicken and greens accompanied with hard-boiled eggs and almost a side serving of dressing. The chicken is lightly seasoned but has a grilled flavor perfect for the summer. For a salad, it’s filling.

But don’t fill up too much. To be a regular here, always save room for dessert.

“Sweetie” offers plenty of cake choices, while Bush’s main attraction is the peach cobbler. The cobbler is perfectly layered and hits each of the tastebuds at just the right moment.

Besides the cobbler, the honey bun cake is a must-try. The flavors are kin to the breakfast pastry but bask in a cake form. Davis pours a sweet icing on top to make anyone want to lick the plate.

The whole menu is why G’Marie’s is growing and quickly becoming a mainstay for workers around the location.

“I’m proud of the environment and knowing the actual love and attention that we actually do put into the food because these are the recipes that we cook for our family,” Davis said.


G’Marie’s

Location: 2130 Greenwood Road, Shreveport 222-0303

Hours: 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday


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