After making southern food at a local restaurant for several years, short-order cook and Memphis native Johnny Jones decided to move his food truck around Springfield, offering southern cooking to customers from his large yellow Big Dad's food truck.
Big Dad's, most of the time parked in the 800 block of Memorial Boulevard, in front of Stewart Williams Furniture and the Robertson County Connection office, offers the usual burger and fries you would find at any fast food chain, but not cooked like Johnny cooks it.
"I learned to cook from my Mama and Grand Mama," Jones said. "I make southern home cooked food, the food that people were raised on."
Springfield Alderman Bobby Trotter said he periodically picks up lunch from Big Dad's for his 92-year-old mother Mary Trotter.
"She loves the fish sandwiches, with a little hot sauce on them," Trotter said.
Last Friday, four water department workers with the City of Springfield stopped by for what they called, "The best cheeseburgers around."
Jones said when he was young, most kids were outside playing while he watched his Mama prepare dinner.
"She let me help her," Jones said. "I cook with a lot of love and I make what people like. When they taste it, and say they like it, that makes me feel good."
In 2002, Johnny, who is married to Tameeka Jones, moved their family to Springfield, where they now raise their four children.
Sometimes the kids even pitch in and help with the Big Dad's menu, which has daily offers of the Johnny Burger with fries and his specialty Philly Cheese Steak.
Throughout the week, Jones offers daily specials on Tuesday through Friday, including fried pork chops, baked chicken, ribs, meat loaf, roast beef, spaghetti and fried fish.
Sides range from hot water corn bread, to macaroni and cheese, turnip greens, baked beans, mashed potatoes, broccoli and cheese and green beans, depending on the day of the week.
Jones, who runs Big Dad's Home Cooked Catering, has catered events for Relay for Life, birthday parties and prom parties and offers a long list of meats, sides and peach cobbler, apple cobbler and pudding cake for dessert.
His hamburgers are so popular, he ran out of them recently at a special Predators viewing party on the square, where local Preds fans stood in a long line to purchase some of his southern cooking.
"The reason I do this is because I love to see people happy," Jones said. "When they eat the food and talk about it being so good, that makes me happy."
For more information, visit Facebook/bigdadshomecooking or call 615-707-1451.