ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Mashed has compiled the best food at gas stations in every state in the U.S.
“Of course, it's perfectly possible to find good gas station grub in the convenience aisles,” writes Mashed. “Still, there are also unassuming gas stations all over the country that are kicking things up six or seven notches with gourmet-worthy food that makes them a destination all in and of themselves.”
Many of the gas stations featured in the Mashed article also have been featured in the NACS Ideas 2 Go video series. Here are a few of the ones that overlap:
El Carajo's Croquettes in Florida: In addition to a traditional convenience store, there are three unique elements at El Carajo: the bakery café, the 2,500-plus bottle wine shop and the acclaimed international tapas restaurant.
Joe’s Kansas City Barbecue: Joe’s personifies the notion that great food can be eaten at a gas station. Not only is it considered the best barbecue in Kansas City, it is considered among the best places to eat anywhere, earning lines out the door and raves from Anthony Bourdain, among others.
Farmer’s Grandson in Minnesota: Owner Tony Donatell has taken a traditional Shell/Oasis Market and transformed it into a unique food and beverage operation with three concepts around food—sharing the same kitchen in the convenience store with other high-end dining and drinking experiences.
Casey’s in Kentucky and other states: In many small towns, Casey’s is a mom-and-pop shop, a gas station, a pizza parlor, a bakery and community gathering place. In 2011, it added pizza delivery, which increased sales and helped the company continue to redefine how they are all things to all people, especially in smaller communities.
Sheetz in Pennsylvania: This Ideas 2 Go video features the first modern location for Sheetz without gasoline or parking, with a complete focus on the food and beverage offering. The nearly 15,000-square-foot location is “a giant sandbox” to experiment and develop programs to redefine the company.
Follow the Gas Station Gourmet’s columns in NACS Magazine each month for a look at some gas station food gems.