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PCS: A Chance at Great Food

There are so many pros to military life. But of all the awesome perks of being a military spouse, my favorite is the opportunities I have had to eat the country. We have lived in four different states during the last seven years, which means we have gotten to chance to sample cuisine from coast to coast.

But on the flip side, I have also had to leave behind my favorite eating establishments when we move to our next duty station. After leaving friends behind, this is my second least favorite part of military life. When we reminisce about the places we lived, the restaurants we left behind are always part of the conversation.

It’s common knowledge that most Army posts are not located near cities known for culinary excellence. However, you might be surprised to learn that some of the best, and most diverse food I have ever eaten, can be found near some of the most unlikely Army posts. And by the way, I grew up as a city girl, so that says a lot.

The best Turkish food I have ever had was at a hole in the wall joint outside the gate of Fort Bragg. It’s right next door to an awesome Thai restaurant. Hands down the best Sushi was at a restaurant near Fort Benning. The best french fries were at a dinner in Watertown, NY (home of Fort Drum). I really could go on an on.

So how do you find these gems without risking your intestinal happiness in the process? Here are my three tips for finding the best food at your new duty station.

1. Ask around. Locals are my favorite people to ask right off the bat. But,  I also like to ask other military folks that have been in the area for a long time.

2. Google is your friend when it comes to finding new places to eat. Internet websites like Yelp are great for finding reviews of potential spots. I have been steered in the right direction many times by using this site.

3. Be brave! Try new restaurants even if your are skeptical, especially if they come highly recommend. Like I said, some of my favorite places haven’t been in the best location or don’t look great from the outside. And some of the worst places I have eaten are ones that look great on the outside. Never judge a book by it’s cover, so to speak.

What are some of the best places to eat where you have been stationed and how did you find them?

About Erin

Erin is an Army wife of seven years and the mother of two little girls. Her Army wife resume includes five deployments, five PCS moves, four duty stations, and a few stints volunteering with the family readiness group. She has been documenting her family's military life experience since 2008 on her blog The Unexpected Army Life.