Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 39

OUR FOOD WRITER FRED SAUCEMAN, WHO'S
TASTED THE BEST ALL OVER THE SOUTH AND WRITTEN
ABOUT THOSE TASTES IN SEVERAL BOOKS, SAYS
SIMPLY, "THE BEAN BARN IS MY FAVORITE
RESTAURANT IN ALL THE WORLD."
by Fred Sauceman
"WE MAKE BEANS ALL THE WAY. We start off with a

little bit of beef broth from our beef stew in the bottom of the bowl, a small potato, the beans, and then
the onions on top, and we have Beans All the Way."
That's co-owner Donna Hartsell's description of
the soup beans/beef stew combination that has been
served at what is now The Bean Barn, since the
1950s.
"I've brought people from all over the world to
the Bean Barn, and if we're going to have one meal,
I'm going to have it from here," says local philanthropist Scott M. Niswonger, founder of Landair
Transport. "I have a restaurant downtown at the
hotel, but this is the place they need to see to get a
feel for what East Tennessee is all about."
Dan Walker, Greene County Trustee, says his
father, Reagan Walker, came up with the original
recipe for Beans All the Way. Lard-seasoned, onionsprinkled soup beans are common in the hills and
valleys of East Tennessee. It's the beef stew that sets
Beans All the Way apart.
Donna Hartsell describes the recipe-less tech-

nique: "For my beef stew, I get a pressure cooker,
put two large cans of tomatoes in it, get my hands
down in there, squish the tomatoes up, salt and pepper, Kitchen Bouquet to add flavor and coloring,
onions, and then I put the meat in, which [my husband] Jerry takes care of, cuts it up himself, gets all
the fat off of it - we put that in there, put the lid on
it, cook it. The potatoes and carrots are cooked separately, and after the stew meat is done, we add that
to the potatoes and carrots after they've cooked. I
don't think I could write it down if I had to. It adds
just a little bit of kick to the beans.
"I'm from South Carolina, and I sure didn't grow
up eating soup beans. We ate butter beans and rice.
That was one of my dad's favorite dishes, the butter
beans over the rice, so I'm not used to being around
soup beans until I moved to Tennessee."
Jerry Hartsell cooks about 10 pounds of beans at
a time - usually two big pots every three days.
"All the pots we use are the pots that were here
when I first took over. I don't usually go into buying
too many new things," he says.

Beans All the Way is a combination of soup beans and beef stew, with chopped onions on top.

MARCH/APRIL 2014 | 39



Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014

Cover
Table of Contents
From the Editor / Worth a Click
From the Farm
Digital Help Guide
Creature Feature
The Hike
Mountain Report
Great Home Buys in the Mountains
Festivals & Events
Country Roads
Sip the Best: Mountain Wines, Brews and Spirits
Experience North Georgia
Wild Ponies of the Grayson Highlands: The Photoessay
‘Favorite Restaurant in All The World’
Sadie, Ace Baseball Dog
Sleeping in the Museum (No, on Purpose! In a Bed!)
Mountain Garden
Cabin in the Woods: The Expansive Welcome of Primland
Guest Column
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Intro
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover1
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover2
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Table of Contents
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 4
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - From the Editor / Worth a Click
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - From the Farm
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 7
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Digital Help Guide
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Creature Feature
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - The Hike
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 11
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Mountain Report
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Great Home Buys in the Mountains
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Festivals & Events
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 15
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 16
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 17
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Country Roads
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 19
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Sip the Best: Mountain Wines, Brews and Spirits
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 21
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 22
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 23
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 24
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 25
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Experience North Georgia
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 27
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 28
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 29
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 30
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 31
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 32
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 33
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Wild Ponies of the Grayson Highlands: The Photoessay
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 35
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 36
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 37
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - ‘Favorite Restaurant in All The World’
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 39
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 40
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 41
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 42
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 43
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Sadie, Ace Baseball Dog
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 45
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Sleeping in the Museum (No, on Purpose! In a Bed!)
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 47
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 48
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 49
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 50
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 51
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 52
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 53
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 54
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 55
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 56
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 57
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 58
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 59
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Mountain Garden
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 61
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cabin in the Woods: The Expansive Welcome of Primland
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 63
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 64
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - 65
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Guest Column
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover3
Blue Ridge County - March/April 2014 - Cover4
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