Marie and Greg Heiser's once diminutive lunchroom along U.S. 64 in Lamar grew to new digs a year ago at 51 E. Main St., a cavernous space filled with tables, booths and more than 450 teapots. And yet most lunchtimes the parking lot overflows to the surrounding lots with hungry customers seeking a dependable plate lunch and the tallest meringue pie in all of Arkansas.
Sweet Treats only serves lunch, Monday through Friday, and does it on a cash-or-check only basis. Each weekday, a single plate lunch is offered, a meat-and-two spanning the breadth and depth of classic Arkansas comfort food. One day it's pinto beans and ham with fried potatoes, cabbage and cornbread. Another, it's smothered steak, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans and a roll. Spaghetti days come with salad and garlic bread. Sometimes there's chicken and dumplings, or goulash, pot roast, meatloaf or fried chicken.
Every day there are sandwiches, either with chips or with the soup-of-the-week, your choice of ham, turkey or bologna on wheat or white sliced bread or roll, dressed as you like with American or hot pepper cheese. There's an old-fashioned char-grilled burger or chicken salad and hot ham-and-cheese and turkey-and-cheese sandwiches. You can get a hot dog or a taco salad. It's all prepared just like you were sitting at your mom's table, made to order, satisfying and reasonably priced.
What dwarfs everything else on the whiteboard by the door is the immense list of desserts, featuring a truly extraordinary selection of pies, every one of them made from scratch on handmade, blind-baked crusts. The possum pie's custard is from real cocoa and eggs, not from a gelatin pudding box. Ample slices of strawberry banana cream cheese pie served chilly, peach or apple warmed delightfully, and egg custard, sweet potato, turtle and buttermilk pies delivered quickly and essentially perfect are a smorgasbord of different flavors like opening the pages of a favored cookbook. And it's all for $2.95 a slice, right alongside all manner of cakes, cheesecakes and cobblers and in the presence of soft serve sundaes and root beer floats.
The standouts in this deep bench of sweets, listed within the two dozen different offerings each day, are the meringue pies in lemon, coconut and chocolate. Atop Marie's fine custards float the thickest, tallest meringue currently found in the state of Arkansas, inching out the legendary Charlotte's Eats and Sweets in Keo and bringing to mind the dearly departed Ed and Kay's of Benton. The super flurry meringue's height is only limited by the internal dimensions of the ovens, yet these are meringues that never bead, that cling well to their custards and which come delivered on a never-soggy hand-rolled crust, an airy yet substantial dessert that ensures you'll only be craving a cup of coffee (just a buck!) and a post-lunch nap. Worth the drive.
For information, call 647-0133.