Waffle House tends to have a reputation.
The restaurant chain is known for its inexpensive breakfast, perfect after a night out, as well as plenty of viral videos – mostly of fights – but also gems such as the Tiktok in which a few Waffle House patrons cooked their own meals.
And don’t forget the classic, “Can I please get a waffle?” Vine video.
The fact that Waffle House is a mainstay of American food culture with nearly 2,000 locations in 25 states, I have never eaten at a Waffle House in my 24 years of life. Until now.
I grew up in Ohio — home to around 40 Waffle House restaurants — but I’ve never lived close enough to one to warrant a trip. But now that I live in coastal Mississippi, a state so obsessed with Waffle House that a former Jackson-based Clarion-Ledger newspaper reporter spent 24 hours at a location in Brandon, I knew I had to give it a try.
On Thursday, a colleague and I decided to enter Waffle House #1275 on Denny Avenue in Pascagoula (not to be confused with Waffle House #1479 which is also located on Denny Avenue, about a mile down the road) after a long morning of reporting.
Just like any chain restaurant, the restaurant was no different from other Waffle House locations with its restaurant decor and kitchen hidden behind the counter. The Waffle House design is so ubiquitous that every time you see it in a viral post, video, or meme, you know it’s a Waffle House.
Since it’s called Waffle House and not Omelette House, I knew I had to order the waffle. I was surprised that the waffle was really different from others offered in breakfast restaurants. It was thin, sweet and addictive and delicious.
Given that the Mississippi Coast has nearly 30 Waffle House locations – in a place that has only two Denny’s locations, three IHOPs and no Panera Breads, by comparison – I’m sure this won’t be my only visit to Waffle House. What should I try next?
This story was originally published March 25, 2022 4:54 p.m.