Southern Traditions Reese Witherspoon Still Follows in Hollywood
Just a few of her (and our) favorite things!
What can't Reese Witherspoon do? She's an award-winning actress, producer, author, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and designer. We can't think of anyone who doesn't love Reese; even Oprah is a fan. What fans may not know though, is how Southern Witherspoon truly is.
Reese Witherspoon was born in New Orleans and raised in Nashville. Like any good Southerner, she's proud of her upbringing and how it established her sense of family, tradition, and shaped the rest of her life. From a young age, Reese was interested in reading and acting. She was accepted into Stanford University as an English literature major but eventually left school to pursue acting. Her big break came in 1991 for her role in Man in the Moon. In 2001 she was globally recognized for her starring role in Legally Blonde. The rest is history. In addition to still being a world-famous movie star, Reese is also a mom of three, producer, founded a clothing line, and has countless members in her online book club. She lives in the Los Angeles area with her family but keeps a home in Nashville, too.
From baking biscuits to fan-girling over Dolly Parton, we rounded up our favorite Southern habits Reese Witherspoon took with her to Hollywood.
She loves to cook.
The South loves food, and food is one of Reese Witherspoon's favorite ways to incorporate Southern traditions into her L.A. lifestyle. Some of her favorite dishes include fried chicken, shrimp and grits, and corn salad. In her book Whisky in a Teacup, Reese blesses us all by sharing her grandmother's buttermilk biscuit recipe. She said it's a staple she has to have around the holidays. Reese also takes any opportunity to promote her favorite Southern food establishments and integrate Southern cooking and recipes into her family and friends' lives. When Reese stopped in Birmingham, Alabama, on her book tour, she told the audience that though it's not common in California, anytime a friend in L.A. has a baby, she shows up on their doorstep with a gift and a homemade casserole.
She believes entertaining is an art.
Whether it's cocktails on the porch, planning a dinner party, or celebrating a holiday, there's no doubt that Southerners know how to entertain; Reese Witherspoon is no exception. She believes the location of the party, general theme, and food are important elements, but says the most important aspect to any event is music and cocktails. One of Reese's favorite drinks to have on hand is a nod to her grandmother. "Dorothea's Sun Tea" is a sweet tea cocktail infused with vodka. It provides guests with the warmest Southern welcome.
She's a bookworm.
Something especially unique to the South are the stories that are passed down through generations. Although the book club Reese Witherspoon established in 2017 called "Reese's Book Club" isn't specific to the South, it does often feature Southern authors. In 2018, Reese's Book Club selected Where the Crawdads Sing by Georgia author Delia Owens, skyrocketing the book's success. This led Reese to adapt the book into a movie.
She's obsessed with Dolly Parton.
Did you think we could make a list about the South and not include Dolly Parton? She's another woman who can do it all. Reese Witherspoon says she was obsessed with the country music queen when she was a kid. Dolly inspired Reese in many ways, even her role as June Carter in Walk the Line,and after finally meeting, the duo now share a special friendship. Reese carries her adoration for Dolly Parton wherever she goes, even in Hollywood. Both of these Southern women uphold similar values and outlooks on life and are two of our favorite Southern queens. Let it be known we'd like to vote Dolly Parton as an official Southern tradition.
You can drink as many wheatgrass smoothies as you like in L.A., but when you're Southern born and raised, you'll always be reaching for the bourbon, butter, and anything monogrammed.