Doe’s Eat Place in Greenville is one of those places that most of us have probably heard of at some time or another. The Signa family opened Doe’s back in 1941 as honky tonk/tamale shop. Doe Signa began feeding a doctor in between calls, serving him what was apparently a really good steak. That doctor began bringing friends in, one by one, to try said steak. Before Doe knew it, folks from all over were coming to try his cooking! Once the restaurant traffic picked up making his “eat place” a thriving establishment, Signa shut down the “honky tonk” to focus solely on really. good. food. Doe retired in 1974 and turned the restaurant over to his son, Little Doe, who still runs it to this day.
Worth the Drive to Greenville
From Jackson, it takes about two hours to get to Greenville. Mr. Jackson and I recently decided to take this journey, and invited our Delta-dwelling in-laws to join us! You may not believe me when I tell you this, but I could feel how good this meal was going to taste before we even left Jackson!
We rolled into Greenville a little before 8:00 pm. After a quick wine store run – Doe’s is a brown bag institution – we pulled up to the restaurant where a security guard directed us into a parking spot. (The security guard helps ease the mind of anyone who may feel uncomfortable in this neck of the hood. As with much of the Delta, things in Greenville have changed a bit since back in the day.)
We entered Doe’s through the front door, which landed us in the kitchen. (Seems backwards, I know. But it’s not!) Since we got there after the dinner crowd had thinned out, we were seated right away. We were escorted past the ovens, past the chopping block, through the salad-making station, and past the bread-buttering station before we found our table. We happily took our place at a six-top and ordered a round of Doe’s famous tamales. The tamales are made in-house using Mamie Signa’s special recipe. You know a 70-year-old recipe is going to be a rockstar recipe!
Now, I can’t recall a time when I’ve come to Doe’s and been handed a menu. That might be because you don’t need one. Here are the choices: Ribeye, Filet Mignon, Porterhouse, Sirloin, or Shrimp. There may be a few other options that I’m not aware of, but again, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a menu! Each steak comes with a House Salad and some buttered bread. Our table ordered a round of Filets.
While we were still putting a dent in our tamales, (which are a MUST try), our House Salads appeared. This salad comes with one choice of dressing: The Doe’s House Dressing. It’s a blend of olive oil, lemon juice, and a dash of salt and pepper. I’ve never heard a single person complain about not being able to switch to Ranch. “How can this one salad dressing be so universally pleasing?” I’ve asked myself time and time again. All I can come up with is this: It’s from Doe’s.
Is the Doe’s Steak on YOUR Bucket List?
Tamales and salads demolished, it was time for the steaks! If I had to guess, I’d say their filets are about 10 ounces, and they’re served with a side of house-made fries. Our waitress and her assistant set down a round of plates, each steaming savory goodness!
Steaks from Doe’s have been known to change lives. Steaks from Doe’s have won national awards from the likes of Bon Apetit, Food Network, Southern Living, and Men’s Journal. One of the awards is “No. 1 of the 100 best things to eat in America.” That ought to tell you something! Eating a steak from Doe’s should be an item on any Mississippian’s bucket list.
Finished with an Ice Cream Sandwich
Each of us enjoyed every single bite of every single thing on our plates. By the end of this course, we were all extremely fat and happy. But we weren’t finished yet.
Our waitress appeared with little tiny ice cream sandwiches! How can anyone say no to a mini ice cream sandwich? Of course we ate them, then we all helped roll one another out of the building.
All we could talk about on the car ride home was how spectacular that meal was….
Have you eaten at the ORIGINAL Greenville Doe’s Eat Place? What’s your favorite part about dining at this unique restaurant?
Doe’s Eat Place
502 Nelson St
Greenville, MS 38701