TREY WILDER and Hunter Satterwhite, owner and chef respectively of the new and quite wonderful Treylor Park on Bay, have a simpatico feel for good food that goes way back.
They first met just out of college and formed a foodie partnership in L.A. while working together at the Playboy Mansion for several years. Afterwards these two went their separate ways for a while, with Trey residing in Manhattan and Hunter honing his culinary skills with food truck cuisine in L.A.
Trey’s a good old Southern boy at heart though; a native of Macon, Georgia, and Dixie does tend to call its own back after a while, especially when it comes to memories of our delicious and down-home food.
Eventually Trey moved to Savannah, asking his good buddy to join him. They both wanted to open a place that served recognizable, fresh Southern food, but with a twist. Working his own name into the label they created Treylor Park.
Hunter’s experience with fast and tasty food-truck fare and Trey’s quirky sense of humor have produced a menu in a style that some might called elevated white-trash, but has a funky, fun flavor all its own.
My advice is to ask for details on the dishes because the menu is changeable. I’ve dined there satisfactorily and am impressed with the permutations of favorite Southern dishes.
The bar and restaurant have a laid-back feel, with gray walls, soft lighting, unique art and a dining room overlooked by an immense deer skull encased in silver, its antlers reaching up to nearly touch the ceiling—a gift from Trey’s dad after a recent hunting expedition.
“I wanted to keep things simple, with food people recognize easily, but with our own unique personal take. It’s trailer park staples but at a higher level,” Trey tells me.
“Our logo is a Jetstream trailer—still a trailer for sure, but the best kind. Hunter is really fun and inventive with each dish.”
I did balk at his suggestion to try the PB&J Wings, but I am happy to admit that I’m glad I did. Not peanut butter but pecan butter, freshly ground and made in-house, coats a set of fine fried wings, and a scattering of fresh-made peach jam. I’ve eaten all sorts of wings in my time, but this was a new experience: a rich creamy coating of pecan butter, fresh roasted pecan pieces and that light glaze of jam is amazing.
A foodie friend of mine pronounced the Fish Tacos, crisp grouper sticks dressed in cilantro-lime chow-chow, “wonderful,” and an accompanying girlfriend, who ordered the Treylor Park Nachos was floored by the big dish full of, not chips, but waffle fries, loaded with fried chicken chunks, two cheeses, jalapenos and more.
I ask Trey about the small menu:
“I’ve seen so many places that overdo this, having just too many menus for too many different meals: breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, whatever,” he says.
“Servers have other lives when they get off work, and who wants to spend their time memorizing dishes and prices from all those menus? It gets to be too much to familiarize yourself with! We’re into keeping it small, changing it up according to the freshest seasonal produce, and thus making it all easier to deal with.”
I love it that you can walk in late at night (kitchen open until midnight) and get a scrumptious meal of Biscuits Benedict, Trey’s version of the well-known dish, but made with two halves of a big ole Southern biscuit replacing the English muffin, and perfectly cooked Applewood bacon slices topped with poached eggs, the whole smothered in rich sausage-milk gravy and a sprig of fried collard bits.
My daughter, the burger-hound in the family, absolutely loved the big, char-grilled burger made of grass-fed beef, and yet, she was just a little put off by the sweet, caramelized onions on the classic Grilled Cheese—ask for it minus the grilled onions if you prefer.
The big seller here, though, is the Chicken ‘n’ Pancake Tacos: tender, fried chicken-fingers wrapped in actual golden pancakes, dressed in honey-chili sauce and a flavorful jalapeno-strawberry salsa—try’em with a dark ale or Old Rasputin, a Russian Stout.
An explanation on the ‘Tart Flambé’:
“This is actually a kind of flatbread pizza. We wanted a really good flatbread, though, different than you usually find, with its own flavor; so we choose a French dough, which is thin, light and crispy with a subtle sweetness.”
Available with a Charcuterie of meats and cheeses; American-breakfast style with bacon, eggs & cheese; or with seasonal vegies & béchamel sauce, it’s fast becoming a local favorite.
Desserts here are not for those faint-hearted about sugar! Fried Oreos (a popular food-truck goodie) and a super-rich Bacon Brownie, wearing a unique bacon-fat n’sugar glaze, real bacon-bits sprinkled on top and crowned with toffee ice-cream—damn, y’all! Can’t wait to see what they think of next!