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On the lush grounds of Stanton Hall, the Carriage House Restaurant, 401 High St. (tel. 601/445-5151), open since 1926, serves lunch daily and dinner only during pilgrimage tours. Sip a mint julep in the dining room, where polished, pale-wood furnishings are illuminated by lots of natural light. The menu features burgers, salads, sandwiches, and Southern staples such as fried chicken. Main courses run about $12.

Check your political correctness at the door if you want a peek at Mammy's Cupboard, 555 Hwy. 61 S. (tel. 601/445-8957), an eye-popping, lunchtime-only landmark known as much for its food (try the chicken salad, or chocolate "mud" pie for dessert) as for the unusual shape of its building. It's essentially a statue several stories high depicting the stereotypical Old South black "Mammy" figure; her hoop skirt forms a dome that houses the restaurant. This is one of those quirky places that you have to see to believe. Entrees run $6 to $8. For a potent combination of tangy, "knock-you-naked" margaritas and spicy tamales, head to another maternalistic favorite, Fat Mama's Tamales, 500 S. Canal St. (tel. 601/442-4548). Look for the cactus-bedecked log cabin aglow with orange neon. Nachos, chili, homemade sweet pickles, and Snickers pie round out the short menu. Nothing here costs over $8. In the downtown area, there are several notable diners, including Pearl Street Pasta, 104 A. Pearl St. (tel. 601/442-9284), and even the unexpected, new Thai Planet, 112 N. Commerce St. (tel. 601/442-4220).

In the area along the river known as Natchez-Under-the-Hill, you'll find Bowie's Tavern, 100 Main St. (tel. 601/445-6627; www.bowiestavern.com). Spirits and pub grub are dished out at this convivial nightspot that's part sports bar and part Old English-style tavern. Televisions carry live sporting events, and there's also occasional live music. Main courses run $9 to $14.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.