"To understand the world, you must first understand a place like Mississippi," said the native son William Faulkner. The best way to do that, if you ask me, is to eat. Here is a cross-section of Mississippi's soul-stirring culinary landscape.
**The best burgers in the state are served on grilled sourdough buns at this college hangout in Starkville.
**This Greek-American restaurant in Jackson serves a top-notch version of the city's beloved "comeback" sauce, a tangy salad dressing and all-purpose dip popular across the state.
The catfish pate and catfish Allison (a whole filet gratineed in a scallion cream sauce) have kept this Indianola restaurant going strong for 33 years.
**The Crystal Grill
**Since the 1920s, people have traveled from all over the state and beyond for the gumbo, fried pork cutlets, and mile-high meringue pies at this Greenwood restaurant.
**This restaurant in Vicksburg serves fried chicken, mustard greens, and other Southern fare in a renovated private home.
**Biloxi's freshest crab, oysters, and Gulf shrimp can be had at this eatery tucked inside a seafood and meat market. Try the po' boys.
Mississippi State University at Starkville
The dairy at this university's noted agriculture school makes a mean muscadine ripple ice cream with local grapes and an outstanding Dutch-style Edam cheese beloved by Mississippi chefs and home cooks.