[caption id="attachment_6155" align="aligncenter" width="300"]<a href="https:\/\/mountainmedianews.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/sites\/13\/2014\/08\/Jims-Drive-In2.jpg"><img class="size-medium wp-image-6155" alt="Morgan Murphy visited Jim\u2019s Drive In to try their famous big ranch burger. With him are Kathy Massie (right) and sisters Lynn and Elizabeth Massie (left) " src="https:\/\/mountainmedianews.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/sites\/13\/2014\/08\/Jims-Drive-In2-300x199.jpg" width="300" height="199" \/><\/a> Morgan Murphy visited Jim\u2019s Drive In to try their famous big ranch burger. With him are Kathy Massie (right) and sisters Lynn and Elizabeth Massie (left)[\/caption]\r\n\r\nWhen Morgan Murphy heard about the big ranch burger at Jim\u2019s Drive In, he knew he had to visit.\r\n\r\n\u201cI am constantly searching the South for the most inventive and creative fare - and hot damn, does Jim\u2019s Drive In have it,\u201d joked Murphy. The <i>Southern Living<\/i> food critic and TV personality was in town July 8 for his series.\r\n\r\nMurphy is known for his hilarious stories and the amazing recipes he pries out of mom-and-pop restaurants. His books include the best-selling Off the Eaten Path series and coming this fall: Bourbon & Bacon.\r\n\r\n\u201cWhen you cook as badly as I do, you\u2019ve got to have a sense of humor,\u201d cracks Murphy, who describes his four Southern food groups as, \u201cbourbon, salt, bacon and PIE.\u201d\r\n\r\n\u201cJim\u2019s is a drive-in serving all things American,\u201d said Murphy.\r\n\r\nHow did he choose Jim\u2019s Drive In? Murphy says he picks all his restaurants based on three criteria: the food, the service and the ambiance, \u201cBut shoot, the ambiance and the service can be broken if the food is good enough,\u201d says Murphy, \u201cWho doesn\u2019t love a great BBQ shack that looks like it might fall in on you?\u201d\r\n\r\nThe Southern food writer says he gets his restaurant tips mainly through fans to his website, morganmurphy.co or directly on Twitter @ morganmurphy. \u201cI love to get tips from readers. They\u2019re the ones who know the best spots,\u201d says Murphy. And Murphy always follows up in person, often driving his huge 1956 Cadillac, \u201cI research restaurants the old-fashioned way: I go there. Google just can\u2019t take the place of actually being there.\u201d\r\n\r\nMurphy\u2019s work has been read by millions, and he has been featured on many popular television programs, including the TODAY Show and Fox & Friends. He\u2019s become a regular on QVC, and this summer, he\u2019s making his Travel Channel debut as a judge on \u201cAmerican Grilled.\u201d\r\n\r\n\u201cThey\u2019re just lucky I didn\u2019t accidentally burn down the set,\u201d Murphy said with a laugh.\r\n\r\nHow did the Bama boy and Navy reserve officer become one of the most popular food critics? \u201cI just write about the food people really like to eat. Who cares about whether the coriander was milled by Polynesian virgins during a lunar eclipse? Does that dish taste good?\u201d\r\n\r\nYou can order signed copies of his book directly from www.morganmurphy.co.