Paradise Found

On a side road between Greensboro and Madison sits a quaint store named Carey Station Provisions. Driving by you might notice the words “BAIT & TACKLE” painted across the top, but this unique paradise is known for much more.


Owners Mark and Jennifer Hardee have over 30 years of experience in the restaurant business and decided to open a local provisions store a year ago.



The 6-ounce hamburger is served on a brioche bun and topped with American cheese. The bun is buttered and placed on the griddle to give it a nice crunch. The beef patty is mixed together with salt, pepper and a tiny bit of garlic.


“You gotta’ have American on a burger,” Mark said. “We get our beef right down the road at Carhan Farm.”


My favorite item is the Crab Cake Sandwich. It is served freshly off the griddle, and the cake is made fresh to order with the claw and the lump. When you open the aluminum foil, steam gushes out filling the air with fresh ocean scents. The meat is crunchy on the outside but soft and flavorful on the inside.



The crab cake is mixed with breadcrumbs, eggs, mayonnaise and a variety of secret spices. The crab cake is placed on an Everything Brioche Bun that is buttered and toasted. Served on the side are fresh lettuce leaves and a slice of tomato which are fresh from the garden behind the store. The sandwich is served with a homemade remoulade sauce.

Mark loves to serve Greek specials, and the most popular item is the Gyro. His passion for Greek food came from his aunt Angelico.



“We would go to Greece quite a bit, and we would get in the kitchen and start cooking,” Mark said. “Neither one of us could talk to each other except she would do her Greek and I would do my English, but I learned so much from her showing me, not telling me. She taught me so much about Greek cooking.”


Locals stop by on their way to Athens or Madison to eat the popular homemade gyro. The Gyro is made of a beef and lamb meat combination, seasoned with a variety of spices and served on pita bread. The gyro is topped with lettuce, tomato and onion fresh from the garden and served with a homemade tzatziki sauce.



“This is the best gyro I’ve ever had,” local lake resident Tom Schlehuber said. “It’s hot, flavorful, high quality lamb and off the charts.”


No matter what you choose to order, everything is made fresh and with quality ingredients. Paradise found!


Story & photos by Katie Marie O'Neal - Small Towns Big Flavors

Published in the May-June 2021 issue of Lakelife Magazine