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Midtown & Beyond guidebook

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Midtown & Beyond guidebook

Food scene
Local breakfast and the best of Memphis BBQ
Great menu, also a micro-brewery. A stone’s throw from the “Studio on the Square” movie theater. Open until 2 a.m. daily.
22
locals recommend
Boscos Squared
2120 Madison Avenue
22
locals recommend
Great menu, also a micro-brewery. A stone’s throw from the “Studio on the Square” movie theater. Open until 2 a.m. daily.
Best burgers in Memphis! I love the Smokie Melt with grilled onions, which they will do on request. Live music every Sun. afternoon. Open daily until 1 a.m. and until 2:30 a.m. on weekends.
20
locals recommend
Huey's Midtown
1927 Madison Avenue
20
locals recommend
Best burgers in Memphis! I love the Smokie Melt with grilled onions, which they will do on request. Live music every Sun. afternoon. Open daily until 1 a.m. and until 2:30 a.m. on weekends.
Oven-baked gourmet pizza. Fun place lots of good memories. (even if it is alone just eating a whole pizza by yourself.) Tree-shaded outdoor deck and patio. Open daily 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. and until 11 p.m. weekends
13
locals recommend
Memphis Pizza Cafe
2087 Madison Avenue
13
locals recommend
Oven-baked gourmet pizza. Fun place lots of good memories. (even if it is alone just eating a whole pizza by yourself.) Tree-shaded outdoor deck and patio. Open daily 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. and until 11 p.m. weekends
Slow smoked Memphis Style. Open daily 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. This locally owned barbecue chain features juicy, wet, or dry-rubbed ribs, saucy pulled pork sandwiches, even loaded barbecue nachos piled high with pulled pork, ‘cue sauce, cheese sauce, shredded cheese, and jalapeños. Don’t miss the crispy, kettle-style homemade barbecue chips. And while you’re there, try a locally brewed beer from Memphis Made, Wiseacre, Ghost River, or High Cotton breweries.
67
locals recommend
Central BBQ - Midtown
2249 Central Avenue
67
locals recommend
Slow smoked Memphis Style. Open daily 11 a.m. - 9 p.m. This locally owned barbecue chain features juicy, wet, or dry-rubbed ribs, saucy pulled pork sandwiches, even loaded barbecue nachos piled high with pulled pork, ‘cue sauce, cheese sauce, shredded cheese, and jalapeños. Don’t miss the crispy, kettle-style homemade barbecue chips. And while you’re there, try a locally brewed beer from Memphis Made, Wiseacre, Ghost River, or High Cotton breweries.
Great sandwiches, pool, and Foosball in the Cooper-Young area. Open 11 a.m. - 3 a.m.
42
locals recommend
Young Avenue Deli
2119 Young Avenue
42
locals recommend
Great sandwiches, pool, and Foosball in the Cooper-Young area. Open 11 a.m. - 3 a.m.
Best spicy, juicy, fried chicken in the Mid-South! Open daily 11 a.m. - 9 p.m., weekends until 10 p.m.
53
locals recommend
Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken
310 South Front Street
53
locals recommend
Best spicy, juicy, fried chicken in the Mid-South! Open daily 11 a.m. - 9 p.m., weekends until 10 p.m.
Modern & classic eats, draft beer & TV sports offered in an airy, lively Irish pub with a long bar.
The Brass Door
152 Madison Avenue
Modern & classic eats, draft beer & TV sports offered in an airy, lively Irish pub with a long bar.
Just a quick walk away you can have some good mixed drinks and make some friends.
6
locals recommend
The Blue Monkey
2012 Madison Avenue
6
locals recommend
Just a quick walk away you can have some good mixed drinks and make some friends.
The place has changed since Harry left. Back then I knew it as Harry's Kwik ceck. (but then I knew the gas station up the street as Bob Mcvey's Amoco) Now owned by Harry's ex and her family, the place has moved from being a sandwich shop at the back of a convenient shop where you could get a key made and grab lunch. Recently, they made space for tables and added to the menu. I still go there every chance I get to get a proper whole muffaletta, they do offer halves, and I get mine spicy.
13
locals recommend
Kwik Chek
2013 Madison Ave
13
locals recommend
The place has changed since Harry left. Back then I knew it as Harry's Kwik ceck. (but then I knew the gas station up the street as Bob Mcvey's Amoco) Now owned by Harry's ex and her family, the place has moved from being a sandwich shop at the back of a convenient shop where you could get a key made and grab lunch. Recently, they made space for tables and added to the menu. I still go there every chance I get to get a proper whole muffaletta, they do offer halves, and I get mine spicy.
I could tell you stories about this place, but they would be best told over a drink while you're at the space. This old dive bar was once home to a brothel, and the rooms upstairs are still intact, with peeling paint and various pieces of old mismatched furniture. A couple of hair-stylist sisters -- Earnestine and Hazel -- eventually turned the 1930's pharmacy into a cafe, Russell George purchased the building in 1992 and re-opened it as a dive bar, leaving the building mostly untouched. These days, Earnestine & Hazel’s offers a glimpse into Memphis’ past, along with greasy “Soul Burgers,” pool, beers, and a famous haunted jukebox that’s known to play songs all hours of the night.
51
locals recommend
Earnestine & Hazel's
531 South Main Street
51
locals recommend
I could tell you stories about this place, but they would be best told over a drink while you're at the space. This old dive bar was once home to a brothel, and the rooms upstairs are still intact, with peeling paint and various pieces of old mismatched furniture. A couple of hair-stylist sisters -- Earnestine and Hazel -- eventually turned the 1930's pharmacy into a cafe, Russell George purchased the building in 1992 and re-opened it as a dive bar, leaving the building mostly untouched. These days, Earnestine & Hazel’s offers a glimpse into Memphis’ past, along with greasy “Soul Burgers,” pool, beers, and a famous haunted jukebox that’s known to play songs all hours of the night.
An old school dinner where what you see is what you get. Not a bad spot for when mornings come too early.
14
locals recommend
Barksdale Restaurant
237 Cooper Street
14
locals recommend
An old school dinner where what you see is what you get. Not a bad spot for when mornings come too early.
Great drinks, good food. Gets crowded. I like the catfish.
29
locals recommend
The Second Line
2144 Monroe Avenue
29
locals recommend
Great drinks, good food. Gets crowded. I like the catfish.
An old Memphis staple. Great for bbq lunch. Not typically open after 4.
Leonard's Pit Barbecue
5465 Fox Plaza Dr
An old Memphis staple. Great for bbq lunch. Not typically open after 4.
Tough to categorize this dive establishment. Great drinks, great ribs. If you are going for the ribs call ahead. They only do small batches so they might run out. Cash only.
11
locals recommend
Alex's Tavern
1445 Jackson Avenue
11
locals recommend
Tough to categorize this dive establishment. Great drinks, great ribs. If you are going for the ribs call ahead. They only do small batches so they might run out. Cash only.
Ribs. Thats the best and all the reason you need.
26
locals recommend
Cozy Corner Restaurant
735 North Parkway
26
locals recommend
Ribs. Thats the best and all the reason you need.
It's as secret as a spot gets on Beale. Burgers are one-of-a-kind. Legend has it that the "secret" was Doc Dyer's ageless cooking grease. This famous grease , strained daily, has continued to produce our juicy Dyer's Burgers for almost a century now. The Dyer's legacy continues to this day. Over the years, this famous cooking grease has been transported to our various Memphis locations under the watchful protection of armed police escorts, 􀉤nally settling here on Historic Beale Street, Home of the Blues and World Famous Dyer's! Wish I could say this place has a secret menu, but its simple in needs. All you need is a few napkins.
Dyer's Burgers
205 Beale Street
It's as secret as a spot gets on Beale. Burgers are one-of-a-kind. Legend has it that the "secret" was Doc Dyer's ageless cooking grease. This famous grease , strained daily, has continued to produce our juicy Dyer's Burgers for almost a century now. The Dyer's legacy continues to this day. Over the years, this famous cooking grease has been transported to our various Memphis locations under the watchful protection of armed police escorts, 􀉤nally settling here on Historic Beale Street, Home of the Blues and World Famous Dyer's! Wish I could say this place has a secret menu, but its simple in needs. All you need is a few napkins.
A place nearby walking for groceries and needs.
31
locals recommend
The Fresh Market
2145 Union Avenue
31
locals recommend
A place nearby walking for groceries and needs.
A few minutes walk. A source for wine and liquor due to liquor laws. Closed on Sunday's like all liquor stores in Memphis. Beer and wine are available at grocery stores.
8
locals recommend
Joe's Wines & Liquor
1681 Poplar Avenue
8
locals recommend
A few minutes walk. A source for wine and liquor due to liquor laws. Closed on Sunday's like all liquor stores in Memphis. Beer and wine are available at grocery stores.
The closest liquor store. The source for wine and liquor due to liquor laws. Closed on Sunday's like all liquor stores in Memphis.
Tip Top Liquor Stores
1883 Madison Ave
The closest liquor store. The source for wine and liquor due to liquor laws. Closed on Sunday's like all liquor stores in Memphis.
Whether you’re looking to grind or unwind, Tamp & Tap has you covered. This Downtown shop offers both coffee drinks and local craft beers. If you’re just getting started for the day, the Tennessean (a white-chocolate caramel latte) is not to be missed. Enjoy it in the spacious dining room with an order of the Nutella brioche toast. Stop by again after work for a locally brewed beer by one of Memphis’ craft breweries.
11
locals recommend
Tamp and Tap
122 Gayoso Avenue
11
locals recommend
Whether you’re looking to grind or unwind, Tamp & Tap has you covered. This Downtown shop offers both coffee drinks and local craft beers. If you’re just getting started for the day, the Tennessean (a white-chocolate caramel latte) is not to be missed. Enjoy it in the spacious dining room with an order of the Nutella brioche toast. Stop by again after work for a locally brewed beer by one of Memphis’ craft breweries.
A quaint coffee shop that sells artisan goods from around the country. City & State on Broad Avenue is a hybrid concept that combines Intelligentsia pourovers with over 40 brands of timeless handcrafted goods, ranging from blankets from an American Woolen Mill that’s been weaving heirloom pieces for over 100 years to cutting boards from third generation woodworkers in Tennessee. City & State practices this attention to local and sustainable business with food and drink items as well; the Smokey Salted Caramel Latte’s sea salt is made in state, while baked goods like the brown sugar cinnamon roll are sourced from Porcellino’s on Brookhaven Circle.
6
locals recommend
City & State
2625 Broad Ave
6
locals recommend
A quaint coffee shop that sells artisan goods from around the country. City & State on Broad Avenue is a hybrid concept that combines Intelligentsia pourovers with over 40 brands of timeless handcrafted goods, ranging from blankets from an American Woolen Mill that’s been weaving heirloom pieces for over 100 years to cutting boards from third generation woodworkers in Tennessee. City & State practices this attention to local and sustainable business with food and drink items as well; the Smokey Salted Caramel Latte’s sea salt is made in state, while baked goods like the brown sugar cinnamon roll are sourced from Porcellino’s on Brookhaven Circle.
The original location of this now local coffee chain and serves up Illy coffee, and customers can order it prepared by drip, cold brew, or French press. The specialty coffee menu offers up unique drinks -- often with Memphis-inspired names. The shop offers plenty of working space and a separate room for private meetings. There’s a full breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu of wraps, salads, burgers, and gourmet hot dogs. It's best known for its creamy baked mac & cheese, which is loaded with feta, Parmesan, and bacon. Try it in the Devil’s pot pie stuffed with mac & cheese and spicy chicken) for a real treat.
34
locals recommend
Café Eclectic
603 North McLean Boulevard
34
locals recommend
The original location of this now local coffee chain and serves up Illy coffee, and customers can order it prepared by drip, cold brew, or French press. The specialty coffee menu offers up unique drinks -- often with Memphis-inspired names. The shop offers plenty of working space and a separate room for private meetings. There’s a full breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu of wraps, salads, burgers, and gourmet hot dogs. It's best known for its creamy baked mac & cheese, which is loaded with feta, Parmesan, and bacon. Try it in the Devil’s pot pie stuffed with mac & cheese and spicy chicken) for a real treat.
When you need a quick pick-me-up, Bluff City is your place. This Downtown coffee shop only offers espresso-based drinks -- no drip coffee. However, if it’s plain black coffee you’re after, your best bet at Bluff City is the Americano -- espresso diluted with hot water. Bluff City Downtown is frequented by Downtown workers looking to get out of the office environment, so there’s plenty of working space. Breakfast and lunch sandwich menus offer easy options for dining in or eating on the go. A friend of mine who use to work there loves the pancakes.
Bluff City Coffee & Bakery Cooper Young
945 Cooper St
When you need a quick pick-me-up, Bluff City is your place. This Downtown coffee shop only offers espresso-based drinks -- no drip coffee. However, if it’s plain black coffee you’re after, your best bet at Bluff City is the Americano -- espresso diluted with hot water. Bluff City Downtown is frequented by Downtown workers looking to get out of the office environment, so there’s plenty of working space. Breakfast and lunch sandwich menus offer easy options for dining in or eating on the go. A friend of mine who use to work there loves the pancakes.
If one coffee shop fully encompasses the artsy vibe of Memphis’ Midtown district, it’s Otherlands. Full-length windows across the front of the shop allow natural light to pour into the funky, colorful space that’s 􀉤lled with sofas, tables decorated with decoupage, mismatched chairs, and at any given time, Midtowners of all ages typing away on laptops, sketching in notebooks, or engaging in deep conversation. Also it offers fresh carrot juice and homemade Italian sodas on the menu, and the food consists of veggie burgers, kosher bagels (with dairy or vegan cream cheese), tuna melts and breakfast burritos.
41
locals recommend
Otherlands Coffee Bar
641 Cooper Street
41
locals recommend
If one coffee shop fully encompasses the artsy vibe of Memphis’ Midtown district, it’s Otherlands. Full-length windows across the front of the shop allow natural light to pour into the funky, colorful space that’s 􀉤lled with sofas, tables decorated with decoupage, mismatched chairs, and at any given time, Midtowners of all ages typing away on laptops, sketching in notebooks, or engaging in deep conversation. Also it offers fresh carrot juice and homemade Italian sodas on the menu, and the food consists of veggie burgers, kosher bagels (with dairy or vegan cream cheese), tuna melts and breakfast burritos.
Elvis. The original owner of this funky Midtown-area coffeehouse was an Elvis fanatic, so the backroom at Java Cabana is a virtual shrine to all things related to the King. It’s a frequent haunt of poets, especially on Thursday night open mic nights, and Java Cabana also often hosts acoustic acts. The flavored coffee drinks have Memphis-centric names: Mystery Train (vanilla hazelnut espresso with steamed milk and whipped cream), the Lisa Marie (dark roast with cocoa and raspberry), and the Jerry Lee (a double shot of espresso with dark roast coffee). The food menu is heavy on vegetarian selections (veggie quesadilla, meatless sloppy Joes, veggie burgers).
15
locals recommend
Java Cabana, Cooper-Young's Coffeehouse
2170 Young Avenue
15
locals recommend
Elvis. The original owner of this funky Midtown-area coffeehouse was an Elvis fanatic, so the backroom at Java Cabana is a virtual shrine to all things related to the King. It’s a frequent haunt of poets, especially on Thursday night open mic nights, and Java Cabana also often hosts acoustic acts. The flavored coffee drinks have Memphis-centric names: Mystery Train (vanilla hazelnut espresso with steamed milk and whipped cream), the Lisa Marie (dark roast with cocoa and raspberry), and the Jerry Lee (a double shot of espresso with dark roast coffee). The food menu is heavy on vegetarian selections (veggie quesadilla, meatless sloppy Joes, veggie burgers).
Muddy’s opened its original East Memphis location as a cupcake and pastry shop, but when the popular bakery expanded to Midtown, owner Kat Gordon opted to make gourmet coffee drinks the new location’s focus. Of course, you can still get all of Muddy’s locally famous cupcakes at the coffee house location, but at the Cooper-Young spot, you can wash them down with espresso drinks, teas, and drip coffees. Muddy’s Grind House is located in an old historic home, and it boasts one of the largest coffeehouse patios in town. Order a caramel cream latte and a Prozac cupcake (chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream), and enjoy them from the breezy patio overlooking busy Cooper St.
41
locals recommend
Muddy's Bake Shop + Coffee
585 Cooper Street
41
locals recommend
Muddy’s opened its original East Memphis location as a cupcake and pastry shop, but when the popular bakery expanded to Midtown, owner Kat Gordon opted to make gourmet coffee drinks the new location’s focus. Of course, you can still get all of Muddy’s locally famous cupcakes at the coffee house location, but at the Cooper-Young spot, you can wash them down with espresso drinks, teas, and drip coffees. Muddy’s Grind House is located in an old historic home, and it boasts one of the largest coffeehouse patios in town. Order a caramel cream latte and a Prozac cupcake (chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream), and enjoy them from the breezy patio overlooking busy Cooper St.
A favorite among students at the University of Memphis, this small coffee shop is tucked away in a residential neighborhood, surrounded by modest homes near the city’s public university. This shop, a project developed through Mid-South Christian College, offers patrons a chance to give back as they enjoy their morning cup. Each month, the Avenue picks a different charity to which to donate a portion of its proceeds. In keeping with its mission of supporting local, the Avenue uses locally roasted beans from Reverb Coffee for its drinks and flavored lattes. Desserts range from pecan pie to orange cranberry muffins to ice cream. But they also have a bit heartier meals.
6
locals recommend
Avenue Coffee
786 Echles Street
6
locals recommend
A favorite among students at the University of Memphis, this small coffee shop is tucked away in a residential neighborhood, surrounded by modest homes near the city’s public university. This shop, a project developed through Mid-South Christian College, offers patrons a chance to give back as they enjoy their morning cup. Each month, the Avenue picks a different charity to which to donate a portion of its proceeds. In keeping with its mission of supporting local, the Avenue uses locally roasted beans from Reverb Coffee for its drinks and flavored lattes. Desserts range from pecan pie to orange cranberry muffins to ice cream. But they also have a bit heartier meals.
Local coffee roaster Ugly Mug sells its organic and fair-trade beans at stores all over the Mid-South, but fans can get their beans fresh-brewed at UM’s tiny flagship shop in East Memphis. Espressos, cappuccinos, mochas, and blended frappes are on offer, and bags of its whole bean and ground coffees can be purchased at the shop for a discounted price. The small menu features breakfast & lunch items, as well as pastries (like the buttermoon pound cake) that are prepared by Memphis’ La Baguette, a French bakery. Though the shop is tiny, there are a few tables and a small patio for those looking to stay and work or socialize.
Ugly Mug
4610 Poplar Ave
Local coffee roaster Ugly Mug sells its organic and fair-trade beans at stores all over the Mid-South, but fans can get their beans fresh-brewed at UM’s tiny flagship shop in East Memphis. Espressos, cappuccinos, mochas, and blended frappes are on offer, and bags of its whole bean and ground coffees can be purchased at the shop for a discounted price. The small menu features breakfast & lunch items, as well as pastries (like the buttermoon pound cake) that are prepared by Memphis’ La Baguette, a French bakery. Though the shop is tiny, there are a few tables and a small patio for those looking to stay and work or socialize.
When you walk through the doors of La Baguette, the first thing you notice is the fragrance – a warm, wonderful, can’t-wait-to-eat-this smell that beckons you in. A delectable which of rich brewed coffee completes the bouquet, and you know you are in a place where good food is lovingly prepared and carefully crafted. And from your first taste, you will not be disappointed! From the indulgence of the pastries to the heartier fare of the café, La Baguette has been pleasing palates in Memphis since 1976 with unique family recipes, high quality ingredients, and love of what they do.
La Baguette French Bread and Pastry Shop
3088 Poplar Avenue
When you walk through the doors of La Baguette, the first thing you notice is the fragrance – a warm, wonderful, can’t-wait-to-eat-this smell that beckons you in. A delectable which of rich brewed coffee completes the bouquet, and you know you are in a place where good food is lovingly prepared and carefully crafted. And from your first taste, you will not be disappointed! From the indulgence of the pastries to the heartier fare of the café, La Baguette has been pleasing palates in Memphis since 1976 with unique family recipes, high quality ingredients, and love of what they do.
Wiseacre Brewing is a Binghampton hot spot for craft beer-loving locals. The ten taps pour exclusively Wiseacre brews, but the variety at hand is enough to satisfy any grain/hop/yeast-craving palate. The award-winning Tiny Bomb Pilsner and crisp, hop-heavy Ananda are draft staples (due to popular demand), and the remaining taps rotate through seasonal and one-off labels. Taste your way through Wiseacre's repertoire at communal tables inside or on the patio out back, and maybe treat yourself to a snack from the roster of food trucks, while you're at it. On your way out, be sure to fill a growler with your favorite draft of the day, or purchase cans of past favorites, rare selections, and more
32
locals recommend
WISEACRE Brewing Co.
2783 Broad Avenue
32
locals recommend
Wiseacre Brewing is a Binghampton hot spot for craft beer-loving locals. The ten taps pour exclusively Wiseacre brews, but the variety at hand is enough to satisfy any grain/hop/yeast-craving palate. The award-winning Tiny Bomb Pilsner and crisp, hop-heavy Ananda are draft staples (due to popular demand), and the remaining taps rotate through seasonal and one-off labels. Taste your way through Wiseacre's repertoire at communal tables inside or on the patio out back, and maybe treat yourself to a snack from the roster of food trucks, while you're at it. On your way out, be sure to fill a growler with your favorite draft of the day, or purchase cans of past favorites, rare selections, and more
Take a break from your regular lunch spot and give Caritas Village a try. Caritas means "love for all people". Founded by Onie Johns, who left her suburban Germantown life to engage in a “ministry of presence,” she strives to “break down walls of hostility between races, rich and poor, and provide a positive street-corner alternative for neighborhood children.” Caritas Village includes a restaurant, theater, art studio, free health clinic, after-school programs, tutoring and ESL programs, as well as offers a wide range of cultural and arts activities. Stop by for a cup of coffee or lunch. The menu features burgers, paninis, salads and soup. There is a charge for the food, but everyone who is hungry eats, whether they can pay or not.
Caritas Village
2509 Harvard Ave
Take a break from your regular lunch spot and give Caritas Village a try. Caritas means "love for all people". Founded by Onie Johns, who left her suburban Germantown life to engage in a “ministry of presence,” she strives to “break down walls of hostility between races, rich and poor, and provide a positive street-corner alternative for neighborhood children.” Caritas Village includes a restaurant, theater, art studio, free health clinic, after-school programs, tutoring and ESL programs, as well as offers a wide range of cultural and arts activities. Stop by for a cup of coffee or lunch. The menu features burgers, paninis, salads and soup. There is a charge for the food, but everyone who is hungry eats, whether they can pay or not.
The Cove is a retro, nautical-themed bar and restaurant that is a resurrection of the type of dive that used to exist on every corner in New Orleans. The presence of the legendary Anderton's Restaurant Ship Bar, however, gives The Cove a flavor that is uniquely Memphis. The Cove specializes in fresh oysters and classic hand-crafted cocktails. Our sea-going décor and romantic lighting offer an intimate setting in which to savor delicious seafood, such as shrimp remoulade and baked oysters, as well as panini and pizzas. The Cove offers the most incredibly extensive cocktail list in the region, including more Bourbons and Rum than any other bar in town! Lucky Cat Ramen is there too.
21
locals recommend
The Cove
2559 Broad Avenue
21
locals recommend
The Cove is a retro, nautical-themed bar and restaurant that is a resurrection of the type of dive that used to exist on every corner in New Orleans. The presence of the legendary Anderton's Restaurant Ship Bar, however, gives The Cove a flavor that is uniquely Memphis. The Cove specializes in fresh oysters and classic hand-crafted cocktails. Our sea-going décor and romantic lighting offer an intimate setting in which to savor delicious seafood, such as shrimp remoulade and baked oysters, as well as panini and pizzas. The Cove offers the most incredibly extensive cocktail list in the region, including more Bourbons and Rum than any other bar in town! Lucky Cat Ramen is there too.
With its neon pink and teal exterior, this 1970s-era snow cone shop is a frozen treat oasis. The building -- a converted gas station -- is topped with a giant ice cream cone and a polka-dotted polar. As the name would imply, snow cones are the specialty and they have a heavy hand with the syrup. They come in an assortment of wild flavors -- Tiger’s Blood (cherry & coconut), wedding cake, Jolly Rancher (that’s the blueberry and green apple combo, get that one). “Supreme” style, comes with a swirl of vanilla soft-serve in the center. Jerry’s also serves burgers, hot dogs, nachos, and traditional concession fare, but Delta-style chicken tamales are the most popular menu item.
11
locals recommend
Jerry's Sno Cones
1657 Wells Station Road
11
locals recommend
With its neon pink and teal exterior, this 1970s-era snow cone shop is a frozen treat oasis. The building -- a converted gas station -- is topped with a giant ice cream cone and a polka-dotted polar. As the name would imply, snow cones are the specialty and they have a heavy hand with the syrup. They come in an assortment of wild flavors -- Tiger’s Blood (cherry & coconut), wedding cake, Jolly Rancher (that’s the blueberry and green apple combo, get that one). “Supreme” style, comes with a swirl of vanilla soft-serve in the center. Jerry’s also serves burgers, hot dogs, nachos, and traditional concession fare, but Delta-style chicken tamales are the most popular menu item.
Sweden Kream’s history is a bit of a mystery, but owner Terry Hardaway has said the diner predates the residential neighborhood that surrounds it. That would date it back to possibly the 1940s. From the outside, it may not look like much, but inside, Southern hospitality mixed with juicy burgers and shakes will take patrons back to simpler days. Also on the menu are snow cones, milkshakes, and a hot fudge cake sandwich stuffed with vanilla soft serve.
Sweden Kream
1472 National St
Sweden Kream’s history is a bit of a mystery, but owner Terry Hardaway has said the diner predates the residential neighborhood that surrounds it. That would date it back to possibly the 1940s. From the outside, it may not look like much, but inside, Southern hospitality mixed with juicy burgers and shakes will take patrons back to simpler days. Also on the menu are snow cones, milkshakes, and a hot fudge cake sandwich stuffed with vanilla soft serve.
Stepping into The Arcade Restaurant feels like stepping back into Memphis’ glory days when Elvis reigned supreme. This 1950s-style diner actually dates back to 1919, making it Memphis’ oldest continuously operating restaurant. The space was redesigned in the ’50s by owner Speros Zepatos’ son Harry, and it hasn’t changed much since. Diners feast on greasy breakfasts and meat-and-three plates atop boomerang-style tables. Elvis was a fan of the Arcade, and his favorite booth is marked with a plaque. The restaurant is often used as a film location and has made appearance in Mystery Train, Great Balls of Fire!, The Client, The Firm, 21 Grams, Elizabethtown, Walk the Line, and My Blueberry Nights.
39
locals recommend
The Arcade Restaurant
540 South Main Street
39
locals recommend
Stepping into The Arcade Restaurant feels like stepping back into Memphis’ glory days when Elvis reigned supreme. This 1950s-style diner actually dates back to 1919, making it Memphis’ oldest continuously operating restaurant. The space was redesigned in the ’50s by owner Speros Zepatos’ son Harry, and it hasn’t changed much since. Diners feast on greasy breakfasts and meat-and-three plates atop boomerang-style tables. Elvis was a fan of the Arcade, and his favorite booth is marked with a plaque. The restaurant is often used as a film location and has made appearance in Mystery Train, Great Balls of Fire!, The Client, The Firm, 21 Grams, Elizabethtown, Walk the Line, and My Blueberry Nights.
For something a little different, try Belly Acres, a fast-casual concept with a focus on using meats and produce grown on farms with sustainable growing practices. All 12 of their signature burgers are made with grass-fed beef, and there are three beefless burgers (portabello mushroom, black-eyed pea, and lentil & caramelized onion). Burger toppings range from pickled collard greens, to pork belly, to jalapeño jam, to maple ketchup. Inside, the space is designed to look like a farm, with a bright yellow crop duster suspended from the ceiling. In keeping with the sustainable theme, Belly Acres features wall paneling and furnishings made from locally sourced, reclaimed wood.
Belly Acres
2102 Trimble Pl
For something a little different, try Belly Acres, a fast-casual concept with a focus on using meats and produce grown on farms with sustainable growing practices. All 12 of their signature burgers are made with grass-fed beef, and there are three beefless burgers (portabello mushroom, black-eyed pea, and lentil & caramelized onion). Burger toppings range from pickled collard greens, to pork belly, to jalapeño jam, to maple ketchup. Inside, the space is designed to look like a farm, with a bright yellow crop duster suspended from the ceiling. In keeping with the sustainable theme, Belly Acres features wall paneling and furnishings made from locally sourced, reclaimed wood.
Hit up The Four Way. There, you’ll find fried chicken prepared with just as much love and care from a mom-and-pop soul food joint in the heart of Soulsville (the South Memphis neighborhood that’s also home to the Stax Museum of American Soul Music). Additionally, you’ll find a full menu of soul food staples. The Four Way offers country fried steak with creamy gravy, fried catfish, slow-simmered neck bones, and Southern-style turkey and dressing. Those are served with house-made sides that range from boiled okra and pickled tomatoes to mac & cheese and mashed potatoes & gravy.
6
locals recommend
The Four Way Soul Food Restaurant
998 Mississippi Boulevard
6
locals recommend
Hit up The Four Way. There, you’ll find fried chicken prepared with just as much love and care from a mom-and-pop soul food joint in the heart of Soulsville (the South Memphis neighborhood that’s also home to the Stax Museum of American Soul Music). Additionally, you’ll find a full menu of soul food staples. The Four Way offers country fried steak with creamy gravy, fried catfish, slow-simmered neck bones, and Southern-style turkey and dressing. Those are served with house-made sides that range from boiled okra and pickled tomatoes to mac & cheese and mashed potatoes & gravy.
Hidden inside the Cash Saver grocery store on Madison, the Growler offers a huge selection of craft and specialty beers. Pick and choose to create your own sixer or fill an empty growler (it’s an extra $5 to buy the growler bottle if you don’t already have one).
Madison Growler & Bottle Shop
1620 Madison Ave
Hidden inside the Cash Saver grocery store on Madison, the Growler offers a huge selection of craft and specialty beers. Pick and choose to create your own sixer or fill an empty growler (it’s an extra $5 to buy the growler bottle if you don’t already have one).
They’re so good, y’all. You can find the cookies in local grocery stores, but you’ll want to stop in the Downtown location and say "hi" to Tamika.
Makeda's Butter Cookies
488 S 2nd St
They’re so good, y’all. You can find the cookies in local grocery stores, but you’ll want to stop in the Downtown location and say "hi" to Tamika.
Named for a beloved Beale Street bluesman, Automatic Slim’s has been a staple in the downtown Memphis dining scene for 20 years. Slim’s has always been known for its innovative food and lively bar. The menu changes regularly using fresh seasonal ingredients from local farmers. Aside from the excellent food Slim’s boasts the largest martini list in Memphis, at $3 a pop on Martini Mondays, and has become known for its famous popsicle martinis. Over the years Slim’s has been featured in numerous international publications as the place in the mid-south to see and be seen. Some of Hollywood’s finest have stopped by such as Susan Sarandon, Tom Cruise, and Francis Ford Coppola.
9
locals recommend
Automatic Slim's
83 S 2nd St
9
locals recommend
Named for a beloved Beale Street bluesman, Automatic Slim’s has been a staple in the downtown Memphis dining scene for 20 years. Slim’s has always been known for its innovative food and lively bar. The menu changes regularly using fresh seasonal ingredients from local farmers. Aside from the excellent food Slim’s boasts the largest martini list in Memphis, at $3 a pop on Martini Mondays, and has become known for its famous popsicle martinis. Over the years Slim’s has been featured in numerous international publications as the place in the mid-south to see and be seen. Some of Hollywood’s finest have stopped by such as Susan Sarandon, Tom Cruise, and Francis Ford Coppola.
Live Music
Great amphitheater with the history of Memphis musicians playing the venue. Most people just call it the Shell
42
locals recommend
Levitt Shell
1928 Poplar Avenue
42
locals recommend
Great amphitheater with the history of Memphis musicians playing the venue. Most people just call it the Shell
America's Most Iconic Street by USA Today National Poll runs from the Mississippi River to East Street, a distance of approximately 1.8 miles (2.9 km). It is a significant location in the city's history, as well as in the history of the blues. Today, the blues clubs and restaurants that line Beale Street are major tourist attractions in Memphis. Festivals and outdoor concerts periodically bring large crowds to the street and its surrounding areas. See the Beale Street Flippers in action. Featured on America’s Got Talent and regularly perform during NBA halftime shows across the country. You can find the younger up-and-coming flippers somersaulting up and down Beale most every night.
21
locals recommend
Beale Street
21
locals recommend
America's Most Iconic Street by USA Today National Poll runs from the Mississippi River to East Street, a distance of approximately 1.8 miles (2.9 km). It is a significant location in the city's history, as well as in the history of the blues. Today, the blues clubs and restaurants that line Beale Street are major tourist attractions in Memphis. Festivals and outdoor concerts periodically bring large crowds to the street and its surrounding areas. See the Beale Street Flippers in action. Featured on America’s Got Talent and regularly perform during NBA halftime shows across the country. You can find the younger up-and-coming flippers somersaulting up and down Beale most every night.
To hear music like a local, head to Overton Square, the Midtown entertainment district where Memphians hang out, and grab a seat at Lafayette’s Music Room. The live music menu features a mix of local and traveling performers every night of the week, ranging from Memphis soulstress Susan Marshall and blues saxophonist Brian "Breeze" Cayolle, to classic rockers Devil Train and singer/songwriter duo Pam and Terry. The two-story venue features floor and balcony seating, all with great stage views. Grab a bite from Lafayette’s full menu of Southern dishes, like barbecue pork belly and jambalaya pasta.
56
locals recommend
Lafayette's Music Room
2119 Madison Avenue
56
locals recommend
To hear music like a local, head to Overton Square, the Midtown entertainment district where Memphians hang out, and grab a seat at Lafayette’s Music Room. The live music menu features a mix of local and traveling performers every night of the week, ranging from Memphis soulstress Susan Marshall and blues saxophonist Brian "Breeze" Cayolle, to classic rockers Devil Train and singer/songwriter duo Pam and Terry. The two-story venue features floor and balcony seating, all with great stage views. Grab a bite from Lafayette’s full menu of Southern dishes, like barbecue pork belly and jambalaya pasta.
Arts & Entertainment
The new playhouse is right across from its old home. The old place was a movie theater where Elvis use to privately screen movies. I even know someone who was kissed by Elvis there.
18
locals recommend
Playhouse on the Square
66 Cooper Street
18
locals recommend
The new playhouse is right across from its old home. The old place was a movie theater where Elvis use to privately screen movies. I even know someone who was kissed by Elvis there.
Gets the blockbusters and smaller independent films. The only theater that does so in Memphis.
19
locals recommend
Malco Studio on the Square
2105 Court Avenue
19
locals recommend
Gets the blockbusters and smaller independent films. The only theater that does so in Memphis.
Located on the original site of the Stax Records studio in the Stax Museum pays special tribute to the artists who recorded there, as well as other American soul legends, with a rare and amazing collection of more than 2,000 artifacts, interactive exhibits, films and galleries.
34
locals recommend
Stax Museum of American Soul Music
926 E McLemore Ave
34
locals recommend
Located on the original site of the Stax Records studio in the Stax Museum pays special tribute to the artists who recorded there, as well as other American soul legends, with a rare and amazing collection of more than 2,000 artifacts, interactive exhibits, films and galleries.
A complex of museums and historic buildings, its exhibits trace the history of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States from the 17th century to the present. The museum is built around the former Lorraine Motel, where Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968. Two other buildings and their adjacent property, also connected with the King assassination, have been acquired as part of the museum complex.
100
locals recommend
National Civil Rights Museum
450 Mulberry Street
100
locals recommend
A complex of museums and historic buildings, its exhibits trace the history of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States from the 17th century to the present. The museum is built around the former Lorraine Motel, where Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968. Two other buildings and their adjacent property, also connected with the King assassination, have been acquired as part of the museum complex.
Sun Studio is a recording studio opened by rock-and-roll pioneer Sam Phillips, on January 3, 1950. It was originally called Memphis Recording Service, sharing the same building with the Sun Records label business. Reputedly the first rock and roll single, Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats' "Rocket 88" was recorded there in 1951 with song composer Ike Turner on keyboards, leading the studio to claim status as the birthplace of rock & roll.
31
locals recommend
Sun Studio
706 Union Avenue
31
locals recommend
Sun Studio is a recording studio opened by rock-and-roll pioneer Sam Phillips, on January 3, 1950. It was originally called Memphis Recording Service, sharing the same building with the Sun Records label business. Reputedly the first rock and roll single, Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats' "Rocket 88" was recorded there in 1951 with song composer Ike Turner on keyboards, leading the studio to claim status as the birthplace of rock & roll.
Where the King held court.
78
locals recommend
Graceland
Elvis Presley Boulevard
78
locals recommend
Where the King held court.
One of two places with pregnant panda in 2015. Home to more than 3,500 animals with over 500 di􀉡erent species. Created in April 1906, it has been a major tenant of Overton Park for more than 100 years. In 2008, the Memphis Zoo was ranked "#1 Zoo in the U.S." by TripAdvisor. Since the early 1990s, the Memphis Zoo has invested over $77 million for renovation and expansion. The zoo's animal inhabitants reside in three zones with 19 exhibits, such as Teton Trek, Northwest Passage and China, home to giant pandas Ya Ya and Le Le The Memphis Zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). There is a Je􀉡 Buckley Memorial at the zoo on the wall by tigers.
81
locals recommend
Memphis Zoo
2000 Prentiss Pl
81
locals recommend
One of two places with pregnant panda in 2015. Home to more than 3,500 animals with over 500 di􀉡erent species. Created in April 1906, it has been a major tenant of Overton Park for more than 100 years. In 2008, the Memphis Zoo was ranked "#1 Zoo in the U.S." by TripAdvisor. Since the early 1990s, the Memphis Zoo has invested over $77 million for renovation and expansion. The zoo's animal inhabitants reside in three zones with 19 exhibits, such as Teton Trek, Northwest Passage and China, home to giant pandas Ya Ya and Le Le The Memphis Zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). There is a Je􀉡 Buckley Memorial at the zoo on the wall by tigers.
Don’t miss out on the two wheeled revolution happening in Memphis. Revolutions Bicycle Cooperative has the simple vision of saving the world, one bicycle at a time. To do this, they provide affordable and reliable bicycles to all Memphians. Co-op members repair their own bicycles with the assistance of volunteer mechanics that have received training and experience in professional bicycle shops. The Co-op is a meeting ground for a variety of people ranging from professional bicycle mechanics to individuals learning bike repair for the first time. Such diversity requires that the shop provide sanctuary from all forms of bigotry and discrimination. Revolutions accepts donated bicycles.
First Congregational Church
1000 Cooper St
Don’t miss out on the two wheeled revolution happening in Memphis. Revolutions Bicycle Cooperative has the simple vision of saving the world, one bicycle at a time. To do this, they provide affordable and reliable bicycles to all Memphians. Co-op members repair their own bicycles with the assistance of volunteer mechanics that have received training and experience in professional bicycle shops. The Co-op is a meeting ground for a variety of people ranging from professional bicycle mechanics to individuals learning bike repair for the first time. Such diversity requires that the shop provide sanctuary from all forms of bigotry and discrimination. Revolutions accepts donated bicycles.
They don’t call it the "Broad Avenue Arts District" for nothing. The Broad Avenue Water Tower is Memphis’ tallest and most iconic installation of public art, soaring 150ft into the air. Youngblood Studio did the mural, and Jeremy Allen Fisher did the lighting design. The mural itself reflects the topography of the Mississippi River. Just below the water tower on the warehouse is the This is We mural by French artist Guillaume Alby, aka ReMed. The mural is one of the largest in Memphis, spanning approximately 200ft. Adjacent is Terpsichore -- a color block mural brought to life by students from one of the Binghamton schools under direction of resident artist Tom Clifton.
T Clifton Art
2571 Broad Avenue
They don’t call it the "Broad Avenue Arts District" for nothing. The Broad Avenue Water Tower is Memphis’ tallest and most iconic installation of public art, soaring 150ft into the air. Youngblood Studio did the mural, and Jeremy Allen Fisher did the lighting design. The mural itself reflects the topography of the Mississippi River. Just below the water tower on the warehouse is the This is We mural by French artist Guillaume Alby, aka ReMed. The mural is one of the largest in Memphis, spanning approximately 200ft. Adjacent is Terpsichore -- a color block mural brought to life by students from one of the Binghamton schools under direction of resident artist Tom Clifton.
As we enter a time when facts are fighting a losing battle, reading will be more important than ever. Nestled in the heart of the Cooper-Young, Burke's Book Store is one of the oldest independent book stores in the country. Since 1875, Burke's has provided Memphis with the finest selection of new, used, and rare books. The store has expanded and changed over the years, and now encompasses "the best of the old, the latest of the new, and hard to find collectibles."
15
locals recommend
Burke's Book Store
936 Cooper Street
15
locals recommend
As we enter a time when facts are fighting a losing battle, reading will be more important than ever. Nestled in the heart of the Cooper-Young, Burke's Book Store is one of the oldest independent book stores in the country. Since 1875, Burke's has provided Memphis with the finest selection of new, used, and rare books. The store has expanded and changed over the years, and now encompasses "the best of the old, the latest of the new, and hard to find collectibles."
The Five in One Social Club bills itself as “Kindergarten for Grown Folks.” Twice a week in their Clubhouse they host creative workshops for small groups. The workshops are fun and engaging for everyone, whether you have a creative bone in your body or not. Upcoming classes include wood-burning treasure boxes, stained glass suncatchers, and vintage cover sketchbooks. The retail store features hand-crafted goods from regional artists and craftspeople. They focus on limited editions and one-of-a-kind pieces created by people with active studio practices.
Five in One Social Club
2535 Broad Avenue
The Five in One Social Club bills itself as “Kindergarten for Grown Folks.” Twice a week in their Clubhouse they host creative workshops for small groups. The workshops are fun and engaging for everyone, whether you have a creative bone in your body or not. Upcoming classes include wood-burning treasure boxes, stained glass suncatchers, and vintage cover sketchbooks. The retail store features hand-crafted goods from regional artists and craftspeople. They focus on limited editions and one-of-a-kind pieces created by people with active studio practices.
Home to endless -- and often amazing -- art shows, the Crosstown Arts area has sprouted up in anticipation of the redevelopment of the Sears building. The mesmerizing Beacon sculpture, also known as the “Bicycle Windmill," by Eli Gold and Colin Kidder greets visitors to the area. There are also several murals including the new I Love Memphis mural by Jay Crum and Kong Wee Pang. The Moonpie Project is a rotating mural series featuring new artists (from both Memphis and other cities) every two months. Now look up! The billboard "Jackie in the Secret Garden" is by Maritza Davila.
Crosstown Arts
1350 Concourse Ave.
Home to endless -- and often amazing -- art shows, the Crosstown Arts area has sprouted up in anticipation of the redevelopment of the Sears building. The mesmerizing Beacon sculpture, also known as the “Bicycle Windmill," by Eli Gold and Colin Kidder greets visitors to the area. There are also several murals including the new I Love Memphis mural by Jay Crum and Kong Wee Pang. The Moonpie Project is a rotating mural series featuring new artists (from both Memphis and other cities) every two months. Now look up! The billboard "Jackie in the Secret Garden" is by Maritza Davila.
Include the Orange Mound Gallery when doing your Friday night gallery hopping. OMG, a package store that has been transformed into a gallery, is located in the Lamar Airways shopping strip. It’s also a flex arts space and community gathering spot for the historic Orange Mound neighborhood (the first African-American neighborhood in the United States -- built by and for African-Americans). The gallery hopes to form a safe space for its residents; a space to specifically support the work of African-American artists and other people of color. It’s open Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and by appointment.
Orange Mound Gallery (OMG)
2232 Lamar Ave
Include the Orange Mound Gallery when doing your Friday night gallery hopping. OMG, a package store that has been transformed into a gallery, is located in the Lamar Airways shopping strip. It’s also a flex arts space and community gathering spot for the historic Orange Mound neighborhood (the first African-American neighborhood in the United States -- built by and for African-Americans). The gallery hopes to form a safe space for its residents; a space to specifically support the work of African-American artists and other people of color. It’s open Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and by appointment.
Open since 1966, the Summer Drive-in -- Malco Theatres -- is among a handful of drive-ins left in the US. The four-screen cinema looks much like it did on opening day in ‘66 (when it screened Doris Day’s The Glass Bottom Boat and Paul Newman’s The Prize on one screen) with its massive, retro hourglass sculptures designed to emit neon lights. The theater is open seven days a week from Memorial Day through Labor Day, and on Fridays and Saturdays for the rest of the year. Each screen shows a double-feature, and patrons can listen to the movie through their car radios. Although there’s a concession stand, many people opt to bring their own snacks and beverages. Some folks even bring small grills.
6
locals recommend
Malco Summer Drive-In
5310 Summer Avenue
6
locals recommend
Open since 1966, the Summer Drive-in -- Malco Theatres -- is among a handful of drive-ins left in the US. The four-screen cinema looks much like it did on opening day in ‘66 (when it screened Doris Day’s The Glass Bottom Boat and Paul Newman’s The Prize on one screen) with its massive, retro hourglass sculptures designed to emit neon lights. The theater is open seven days a week from Memorial Day through Labor Day, and on Fridays and Saturdays for the rest of the year. Each screen shows a double-feature, and patrons can listen to the movie through their car radios. Although there’s a concession stand, many people opt to bring their own snacks and beverages. Some folks even bring small grills.
Not much is left of Memphis’ stock of grand Victorian mansions. Once known as “Millionaire’s Row,” Adams Ave was lined with stately homes before the 1960s urban renewal movement oversaw their demolition. The Woodruff-Fontaine House hasn’t changed much at all since it was constructed in 1871 for the family of carriage maker Amos Woodruff. As the other nearby homes in the area were being demolished, the Association for the Preservation of Tennessee Antiquities managed to step in and save the Woodruff-Fontaine House in ‘62. These days, the space is open as a museum filled with period furniture and artifacts from the Woodruff and Fontaine families.
Woodruff-Fontaine House Museum
680 Adams Ave
Not much is left of Memphis’ stock of grand Victorian mansions. Once known as “Millionaire’s Row,” Adams Ave was lined with stately homes before the 1960s urban renewal movement oversaw their demolition. The Woodruff-Fontaine House hasn’t changed much at all since it was constructed in 1871 for the family of carriage maker Amos Woodruff. As the other nearby homes in the area were being demolished, the Association for the Preservation of Tennessee Antiquities managed to step in and save the Woodruff-Fontaine House in ‘62. These days, the space is open as a museum filled with period furniture and artifacts from the Woodruff and Fontaine families.
You wouldn’t know it from witnessing the crowded patios, gorgeous murals, gleaming sculptures, and overall shiny appearance of Memphis’ newly revitalized Overton Square, but this hip entertainment district sat nearly empty for more than a decade. In the 1970s and ’80s, the Square was the hottest spot in town for bar-hopping and shopping. But most of the old restaurants and shops were shuttered after the closing of the second-ever T.G.I. Friday’s in the country (its flagship) in 2003. Maggie’s Pharm weathered that storm, a purveyor of dried herbs and handmade lotions and soap. Elizabeth “Beaver” O’Cain opened Maggie’s in 1981, and it hasn’t changed much since.
Maggie's Pharm
13 Florence St
You wouldn’t know it from witnessing the crowded patios, gorgeous murals, gleaming sculptures, and overall shiny appearance of Memphis’ newly revitalized Overton Square, but this hip entertainment district sat nearly empty for more than a decade. In the 1970s and ’80s, the Square was the hottest spot in town for bar-hopping and shopping. But most of the old restaurants and shops were shuttered after the closing of the second-ever T.G.I. Friday’s in the country (its flagship) in 2003. Maggie’s Pharm weathered that storm, a purveyor of dried herbs and handmade lotions and soap. Elizabeth “Beaver” O’Cain opened Maggie’s in 1981, and it hasn’t changed much since.
This is one of those spots your mom warned you about. But we love it anyway! For years, Hollywood Raiford entertained Memphians in a huge old building on Vance, just south of the central business district downtown. A light-up dance floor, a la 'Saturday Night Fever' was the main attraction, after Riaford himself. Fast forward a few years, and the club has re-opened in a two-story space on S. Second, with the same fog machine and disco ball, and Raiford himself. Daughter Paula is in the mix now, but not much has changed - the crowd is a combination of suburban white folks, hipsters and medical students, plus a few well-heeled Memphians. The beers still come in a bucket, and cash is king here.
23
locals recommend
Paula & Raiford's Disco
14 South 2nd Street
23
locals recommend
This is one of those spots your mom warned you about. But we love it anyway! For years, Hollywood Raiford entertained Memphians in a huge old building on Vance, just south of the central business district downtown. A light-up dance floor, a la 'Saturday Night Fever' was the main attraction, after Riaford himself. Fast forward a few years, and the club has re-opened in a two-story space on S. Second, with the same fog machine and disco ball, and Raiford himself. Daughter Paula is in the mix now, but not much has changed - the crowd is a combination of suburban white folks, hipsters and medical students, plus a few well-heeled Memphians. The beers still come in a bucket, and cash is king here.
For something a little more low key, check out Club Rumba. This South Main club features salsa dancing late into the night every Friday and Saturday. For those with two left feet, there are free salsa lessons at 9:30pm both nights. If salsa isn’t your thing, Club Rumba has a hip-hop night on the first Saturday of each month from 6-9:30pm. Unlike Raiford’s, which doesn’t serve food, hungry dancers can feast on Club Rumba’s small pub grub menu of nachos, wings, and taquitos.
Rumba Room
303 South Main Street
For something a little more low key, check out Club Rumba. This South Main club features salsa dancing late into the night every Friday and Saturday. For those with two left feet, there are free salsa lessons at 9:30pm both nights. If salsa isn’t your thing, Club Rumba has a hip-hop night on the first Saturday of each month from 6-9:30pm. Unlike Raiford’s, which doesn’t serve food, hungry dancers can feast on Club Rumba’s small pub grub menu of nachos, wings, and taquitos.
Those who wish to get a little closer to the muddy Mississippi (and receive a geography lesson to boot) should check out Mud Island River Park. A monorail ride over the Mississippi River to this free attraction located on an island in the river itself. The highlight is an exact scale model of 954 miles of the lower Mississippi, from Cairo, IL, to the Gulf of Mexico. Designed using Army Corps of Engineers navigation charts, the mini river, which stretches for one mile throughout the length of the park, features all the twists and turns of the real river. You can see the Mississippi from the park, so wade in the model river while gazing at the real thing. The park is open from April -October.
18
locals recommend
Mud Island
18
locals recommend
Those who wish to get a little closer to the muddy Mississippi (and receive a geography lesson to boot) should check out Mud Island River Park. A monorail ride over the Mississippi River to this free attraction located on an island in the river itself. The highlight is an exact scale model of 954 miles of the lower Mississippi, from Cairo, IL, to the Gulf of Mexico. Designed using Army Corps of Engineers navigation charts, the mini river, which stretches for one mile throughout the length of the park, features all the twists and turns of the real river. You can see the Mississippi from the park, so wade in the model river while gazing at the real thing. The park is open from April -October.
Here, you’ll find the goods for all of your divinatory, smudging, and spellcasting needs. With a little magic, perhaps you can turn your $10 into $20.
Ebbo Spiritual Supply House
1331 Madison Avenue
Here, you’ll find the goods for all of your divinatory, smudging, and spellcasting needs. With a little magic, perhaps you can turn your $10 into $20.
$8/person to bowl, includes shoes; $2 16oz can of PBR on Tuesdays) Bowling and beer. Need we say more?
Billy Hardwick's All Star Lanes
1576 South White Station Road
$8/person to bowl, includes shoes; $2 16oz can of PBR on Tuesdays) Bowling and beer. Need we say more?
Shangri-La Projects is a record label that grew out of and split off from the Shangri-la Record store and released several of the seminal records of the early 90's Memphis indie scene. It also manufactured and distributed records for the Sugar Ditch label among others. So, visit the store for its history, or its occasional live music, or some of the treasures to be found in the bargain bin.
6
locals recommend
Shangri-La Records
1916 Madison Avenue
6
locals recommend
Shangri-La Projects is a record label that grew out of and split off from the Shangri-la Record store and released several of the seminal records of the early 90's Memphis indie scene. It also manufactured and distributed records for the Sugar Ditch label among others. So, visit the store for its history, or its occasional live music, or some of the treasures to be found in the bargain bin.
We can’t often see the stars in Memphis through the clouds and bright city lights. For less than $5, Sharpe Planetarium is a fun alternative.
11
locals recommend
Pink Palace Museum and Planetarium
11
locals recommend
We can’t often see the stars in Memphis through the clouds and bright city lights. For less than $5, Sharpe Planetarium is a fun alternative.
Plenty of pretty stuff to look at, and you’ll leave feeling extra cultured.
39
locals recommend
Brooks Museum
1934 Poplar Avenue
39
locals recommend
Plenty of pretty stuff to look at, and you’ll leave feeling extra cultured.
Initially, the "Blues Hall of Fame" was not a physical building, but a listing of people who have significantly contributed to blues music. Started in 1980 by the Blues Foundation, it honors those who have performed, recorded, or documented blues. The actual building for the hall opened to the public on May 8, 2015. Where else can you see Johnny Winter’s Firebird guitar or handwritten lyric sheets from the Father of the Blues, W.C. Handy? Nowhere.
6
locals recommend
Blues Foundation
421 S Main St
6
locals recommend
Initially, the "Blues Hall of Fame" was not a physical building, but a listing of people who have significantly contributed to blues music. Started in 1980 by the Blues Foundation, it honors those who have performed, recorded, or documented blues. The actual building for the hall opened to the public on May 8, 2015. Where else can you see Johnny Winter’s Firebird guitar or handwritten lyric sheets from the Father of the Blues, W.C. Handy? Nowhere.
The massive retail space combines a giant-sized version of a Bass Pro shop with a giant cypress swamp filled with fish and alligators, a 13-lane bowling alley, a 28-story freestanding glass elevator, a 120-room hotel that resembles a swanky lodge, an observation deck at the tip of the Pyramid (visit for a fee), and all manner of boats, ATVs, and more to explore. Oh, and a gun range, an archery range, a shooting gallery, and a hotel spa. So, let's just call it Disney for outdoorsy types. Or anyone who wants to marvel at the marriage of a pyramid and a hunting lodge. Weirdly, it just works. Well worth the fee for the view on good weather days.
53
locals recommend
Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid
1 Bass Pro Drive
53
locals recommend
The massive retail space combines a giant-sized version of a Bass Pro shop with a giant cypress swamp filled with fish and alligators, a 13-lane bowling alley, a 28-story freestanding glass elevator, a 120-room hotel that resembles a swanky lodge, an observation deck at the tip of the Pyramid (visit for a fee), and all manner of boats, ATVs, and more to explore. Oh, and a gun range, an archery range, a shooting gallery, and a hotel spa. So, let's just call it Disney for outdoorsy types. Or anyone who wants to marvel at the marriage of a pyramid and a hunting lodge. Weirdly, it just works. Well worth the fee for the view on good weather days.
Rev. Al Green makes everyone feel welcome. It is a remarkable and historic service. And you never know who will make a cameo. Feel free to come and go as you please. It is a very relaxed atmosphere.
7
locals recommend
Full Gospel Tabernacle Church
787 Hale Road
7
locals recommend
Rev. Al Green makes everyone feel welcome. It is a remarkable and historic service. And you never know who will make a cameo. Feel free to come and go as you please. It is a very relaxed atmosphere.
Medical Care
The wait can be a bit, but it is the closest minor emergency care.
Baptist Minor Medical Center
3295 Poplar Ave
The wait can be a bit, but it is the closest minor emergency care.
The wait can be a bit, but it is the best rated minor emergency care.
Methodist Minor Medical Center
8095 Club Pkwy
The wait can be a bit, but it is the best rated minor emergency care.
http://www.methodisthealth.org/about-us/er-wait-times/ The best and closest emergency facilities. Check the link for ER wait time.
Methodist University Hospital
1265 Union Ave
http://www.methodisthealth.org/about-us/er-wait-times/ The best and closest emergency facilities. Check the link for ER wait time.
Outdoor Spaces
Shelby Farms Park lies in the heart of Shelby County in Memphis, Tennessee on 4,500 acres of green space and 10.65 miles of urban trail. It's a community treasure, unrivaled in size and potential anywhere else in the United States. Shelby Farms Park has recently opened major improvements that will give the park new amenities, more adventures, healthier ecology and a lot more to love! Biking, hiking, boating, golf, and lounge
55
locals recommend
Shelby Farms Park
55
locals recommend
Shelby Farms Park lies in the heart of Shelby County in Memphis, Tennessee on 4,500 acres of green space and 10.65 miles of urban trail. It's a community treasure, unrivaled in size and potential anywhere else in the United States. Shelby Farms Park has recently opened major improvements that will give the park new amenities, more adventures, healthier ecology and a lot more to love! Biking, hiking, boating, golf, and lounge
The Overton Park Conservancy’s gateway project has made the city’s crown jewel a more welcoming place. The arched sculpture that artist Tylur French of Youngblood Studio created from scrap bicycles was installed at the intersection of East Parkway and Sam Cooper Blvd in February 2014. The sculpture weighs 7,000lbs and is made up of more than 300 bicycles, each welded onto a steel frame. Yvonne Bobo’s Rhapsody was recently installed at the gateway beside golf clubhouse. Two more gateways will be installed over the next few months: Ben Butler’s Growth at the one adjacent to the East Parkway Playground. More are being installed over time.
66
locals recommend
Overton Park
1914 Poplar Avenue
66
locals recommend
The Overton Park Conservancy’s gateway project has made the city’s crown jewel a more welcoming place. The arched sculpture that artist Tylur French of Youngblood Studio created from scrap bicycles was installed at the intersection of East Parkway and Sam Cooper Blvd in February 2014. The sculpture weighs 7,000lbs and is made up of more than 300 bicycles, each welded onto a steel frame. Yvonne Bobo’s Rhapsody was recently installed at the gateway beside golf clubhouse. Two more gateways will be installed over the next few months: Ben Butler’s Growth at the one adjacent to the East Parkway Playground. More are being installed over time.
Wanna get your hands dirty? The Carpenter Art Garden is working with the children of Binghampton to promote each one’s creative potential and self worth through exposure to artistic, educational, and vocational programs. Under the umbrella of the Binghampton Development Corporation, they partnered with neighborhood children and adults, as well as local artists, to transform a blighted lot into a place of beauty. Each Tuesday volunteers work with approximately 70 children on permanent art installations, take home art projects, and the tending to the garden boxes. At the adjacent Purple House, they offer tutoring, small group art lessons, mentoring and clubs every day after school.
Carpenter Art Garden
296 Carpenter St
Wanna get your hands dirty? The Carpenter Art Garden is working with the children of Binghampton to promote each one’s creative potential and self worth through exposure to artistic, educational, and vocational programs. Under the umbrella of the Binghampton Development Corporation, they partnered with neighborhood children and adults, as well as local artists, to transform a blighted lot into a place of beauty. Each Tuesday volunteers work with approximately 70 children on permanent art installations, take home art projects, and the tending to the garden boxes. At the adjacent Purple House, they offer tutoring, small group art lessons, mentoring and clubs every day after school.
The Memphis Botanic Garden is a 96-acre botanical garden located in Audubon Park. Memphis Botanic Garden is open to the public daily, where guests can take a stroll through various gardens on the grounds. Get lost in nature in the middle of the city.
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locals recommend
Memphis Botanic Garden
750 Cherry Road
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locals recommend
The Memphis Botanic Garden is a 96-acre botanical garden located in Audubon Park. Memphis Botanic Garden is open to the public daily, where guests can take a stroll through various gardens on the grounds. Get lost in nature in the middle of the city.
Neighbourhoods
The most notable public art on South Main these days is the South Main Mosaic Artwalk -- a collection of eight temporary public art installations throughout the South Main neighborhood featuring the works of local artists. Don’t miss Lance Turner’s Jay, which pays homage to Memphis musician Jimmy Lindsey, the famous garage- and punk-rock icon known as Jay Reatard who passed away at the age of 29. The artist's technique shows a memory as simultaneously fading from life and becoming famous. Keep going to the train station to see Anthony Lee’s Modern Hieroglyphics, and right across the street, along a 48ft stretch, eight popular song lyrics about Memphis.
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locals recommend
South Main
10
locals recommend
The most notable public art on South Main these days is the South Main Mosaic Artwalk -- a collection of eight temporary public art installations throughout the South Main neighborhood featuring the works of local artists. Don’t miss Lance Turner’s Jay, which pays homage to Memphis musician Jimmy Lindsey, the famous garage- and punk-rock icon known as Jay Reatard who passed away at the age of 29. The artist's technique shows a memory as simultaneously fading from life and becoming famous. Keep going to the train station to see Anthony Lee’s Modern Hieroglyphics, and right across the street, along a 48ft stretch, eight popular song lyrics about Memphis.
Cooper-Young is an eclectic neighborhood named after the intersection of Cooper St and Young Ave. The entrance to the neighborhood is marked by another one of Midtown’s most iconic works of art, the Cooper-Young Trestle, sculpture which depicts the neighborhood. Created by metal artist Jill Turman, the sculpture was dedicated in 2000. Adjacent to it is the original I Love Memphis mural which has probably appeared in more photos than any other mural in the City, ever. Go for a walk, bike ride, whatever) through the neighborhood and you’ll find numerous colorful underpasses and beautiful recycling bins, thanks to artists artists Jay Crum and Kong Wee Pang, in the First Congo parking lot.
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locals recommend
Cooper-Young
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locals recommend
Cooper-Young is an eclectic neighborhood named after the intersection of Cooper St and Young Ave. The entrance to the neighborhood is marked by another one of Midtown’s most iconic works of art, the Cooper-Young Trestle, sculpture which depicts the neighborhood. Created by metal artist Jill Turman, the sculpture was dedicated in 2000. Adjacent to it is the original I Love Memphis mural which has probably appeared in more photos than any other mural in the City, ever. Go for a walk, bike ride, whatever) through the neighborhood and you’ll find numerous colorful underpasses and beautiful recycling bins, thanks to artists artists Jay Crum and Kong Wee Pang, in the First Congo parking lot.
A hideous turquoise blue building housing Yosemite Sam’s used to be the focal point of this entertainment district. But thanks to Loeb Properties, it's now a colorful, vibrant home to murals and sculptures. The most recent mural, Love Birds, by artists Jay Crum and Kong Wee Pang, is a real standout thanks to its iridescent, sparkly nature. In addition to all of the live music in the Square, the massive wind chimes in the tower, installed by Sean Murphy and Anne J. Froning of Being Art, are well worth a listen. Thats for the art, but as far as area and nearness to the house — You name it. You might find it here. There is even a costume shop, and fair trade teas and lotions.
2101 Madison Ave
2101 Madison Avenue
A hideous turquoise blue building housing Yosemite Sam’s used to be the focal point of this entertainment district. But thanks to Loeb Properties, it's now a colorful, vibrant home to murals and sculptures. The most recent mural, Love Birds, by artists Jay Crum and Kong Wee Pang, is a real standout thanks to its iridescent, sparkly nature. In addition to all of the live music in the Square, the massive wind chimes in the tower, installed by Sean Murphy and Anne J. Froning of Being Art, are well worth a listen. Thats for the art, but as far as area and nearness to the house — You name it. You might find it here. There is even a costume shop, and fair trade teas and lotions.
Sightseeing
Clients came from far and near. Led Zeppelin, Leon Russell, and James Taylor sought out the place, and Ardent became a second home for Stax artists, including Isaac Hayes, Sam and Dave, the Staple Singers, Don Nix, the Bar- Kays and Booker T. and the MGs. The Stax relationship blossomed, and in the early 1970s, Ardent Records became a Stax distributed label. Unfortunately, Stax got caught up in its CBS Records quagmire, and some of Ardent’s greatest albums, including Big Star’s #1 Record and Radio City, did not reach a wide audience until years later.
Ardent Music
2000 Madison Avenue
Clients came from far and near. Led Zeppelin, Leon Russell, and James Taylor sought out the place, and Ardent became a second home for Stax artists, including Isaac Hayes, Sam and Dave, the Staple Singers, Don Nix, the Bar- Kays and Booker T. and the MGs. The Stax relationship blossomed, and in the early 1970s, Ardent Records became a Stax distributed label. Unfortunately, Stax got caught up in its CBS Records quagmire, and some of Ardent’s greatest albums, including Big Star’s #1 Record and Radio City, did not reach a wide audience until years later.
The Memphis pedestrian mall, in front of city hall, boasts a new mural almost every day it seems. Students from the Memphis College of Art along with a few local artists transformed the ugly green utility boxes on Main Street pedestrian mall into works of public art. Concepts range from men’s hairstyles to a No. 2 pencil. Behind City Hall, facing Front St, is Greely Myatt’s breathtaking Quiltsurround, which is composed of recycled street signs. And Roof Like Fluid Flung Over the Plaza by Vito Acconci, think of it as Memphis’ version of Cloud Gate in Millennium Park. At night, don’t miss Lightspan, a 60-meter pedestrian bridge lit with action-sensitive lights over by the law school.
125 N Main St
125 North Main Street
The Memphis pedestrian mall, in front of city hall, boasts a new mural almost every day it seems. Students from the Memphis College of Art along with a few local artists transformed the ugly green utility boxes on Main Street pedestrian mall into works of public art. Concepts range from men’s hairstyles to a No. 2 pencil. Behind City Hall, facing Front St, is Greely Myatt’s breathtaking Quiltsurround, which is composed of recycled street signs. And Roof Like Fluid Flung Over the Plaza by Vito Acconci, think of it as Memphis’ version of Cloud Gate in Millennium Park. At night, don’t miss Lightspan, a 60-meter pedestrian bridge lit with action-sensitive lights over by the law school.
American Dream Safari Even if you've lived in Memphis your entire life, chances are there are parts of it you have never seen. Enter American Dream Safari. Tad Pierson offers customized cultural expeditions in his 1955 Cadillac. He is passionate and knowledgeable about Memphis’s music, history, and people and will create a specialized tour just for you. He offers city tours, Juke Joint tours, and even Road Therapy tours. Packages start at $200 for up to 4 passengers. It’s an experience you won’t soon forget. Phone Number: +1 901-527-8870 tad@americandreamsafari.com
343 Madison Ave
343 Madison Ave
American Dream Safari Even if you've lived in Memphis your entire life, chances are there are parts of it you have never seen. Enter American Dream Safari. Tad Pierson offers customized cultural expeditions in his 1955 Cadillac. He is passionate and knowledgeable about Memphis’s music, history, and people and will create a specialized tour just for you. He offers city tours, Juke Joint tours, and even Road Therapy tours. Packages start at $200 for up to 4 passengers. It’s an experience you won’t soon forget. Phone Number: +1 901-527-8870 tad@americandreamsafari.com
On the morning of Tuesday, September 26, 1933, Memphis police, along with FBI Agents, surrounded a bungalow at 1408 Rayner Street owned by George “Machine Gun” Kelly's longtime friend John Tichenor. The agents then made a violent forced entry. As legend has it, at that moment, Kelly coined the phrase: "G-Men, please don't shoot." Kelly was found badly hung over from the prior evening's drinking binge and still in his pajamas". Might be worth your own drive-by if you are visiting Stax or Graceland.
1408 Rayner St
1408 Rayner St
On the morning of Tuesday, September 26, 1933, Memphis police, along with FBI Agents, surrounded a bungalow at 1408 Rayner Street owned by George “Machine Gun” Kelly's longtime friend John Tichenor. The agents then made a violent forced entry. As legend has it, at that moment, Kelly coined the phrase: "G-Men, please don't shoot." Kelly was found badly hung over from the prior evening's drinking binge and still in his pajamas". Might be worth your own drive-by if you are visiting Stax or Graceland.
How could this storybook house on Cowden have raised Public Enemy Number One? While a student at Central High, 1914-1917, Barnes began selling bootleg liquor. Newspaper clippings compiled by William Currotto suggested he fell in love with easy money. Running afoul of the law meant getting an alias, so Barnes began using the name George Kelly. After he kidnapped Oklahoma oilman Charles Urschel in 1933, he became known as Machine Gun Kelly, and every lawman across the country knew of him. He did return to the welcoming arms of Memphis later that year, and soon afterwards, into the welcoming arms of the Memphis City Jail.
2098 Cowden Ave
2098 Cowden Ave
How could this storybook house on Cowden have raised Public Enemy Number One? While a student at Central High, 1914-1917, Barnes began selling bootleg liquor. Newspaper clippings compiled by William Currotto suggested he fell in love with easy money. Running afoul of the law meant getting an alias, so Barnes began using the name George Kelly. After he kidnapped Oklahoma oilman Charles Urschel in 1933, he became known as Machine Gun Kelly, and every lawman across the country knew of him. He did return to the welcoming arms of Memphis later that year, and soon afterwards, into the welcoming arms of the Memphis City Jail.
Birthplace of Aretha Franklin. Who knew this minister’s daughter and church singer would become “Queen of Soul?” The Polk’s City Directory shows her father living in the house only in one edition, but according to The Stax Museum, she lived here until she was about eight years old. Then it was off to Detroit and off to history.
406 Lucy Ave
406 Lucy Avenue
Birthplace of Aretha Franklin. Who knew this minister’s daughter and church singer would become “Queen of Soul?” The Polk’s City Directory shows her father living in the house only in one edition, but according to The Stax Museum, she lived here until she was about eight years old. Then it was off to Detroit and off to history.
The only remaining original business on Beale, A. Schwab dates back to 1876. It was opened by Abraham Joseph Schwab as a men’s haberdashery, but it later became more of a dry goods store. Schwab’s is still selling a few dry goods (old-fashioned candies, homemade soaps), as well as Memphis souvenirs. Also an old-timey soda fountain, where soda jerks whip up milkshakes with homemade syrups, but more bizarrely known for a selection of voodoo paraphernalia (candles, spell books, dolls, incenses, etc.). Need to attract new love or ward off evil? Schwab’s has you covered. In fact, the store’s motto is “If you can’t find it at Schwab’s, you’re better off without it.” They’re probably right.
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locals recommend
A. Schwab
163 Beale Street
8
locals recommend
The only remaining original business on Beale, A. Schwab dates back to 1876. It was opened by Abraham Joseph Schwab as a men’s haberdashery, but it later became more of a dry goods store. Schwab’s is still selling a few dry goods (old-fashioned candies, homemade soaps), as well as Memphis souvenirs. Also an old-timey soda fountain, where soda jerks whip up milkshakes with homemade syrups, but more bizarrely known for a selection of voodoo paraphernalia (candles, spell books, dolls, incenses, etc.). Need to attract new love or ward off evil? Schwab’s has you covered. In fact, the store’s motto is “If you can’t find it at Schwab’s, you’re better off without it.” They’re probably right.
The historic Peabody Hotel’s Downtown rooftop offers sweeping views of the Mississippi River, and it’s certainly one of the best places to catch a sunset. During the summer months, the hotel hosts weekly rooftop parties on Thursday nights, with cocktails and live music. And don't forget about the daily ritual of the elevator duck ride between the rooftop to the fountain to the lobby.
53
locals recommend
The Peabody Memphis
118 Union Avenue
53
locals recommend
The historic Peabody Hotel’s Downtown rooftop offers sweeping views of the Mississippi River, and it’s certainly one of the best places to catch a sunset. During the summer months, the hotel hosts weekly rooftop parties on Thursday nights, with cocktails and live music. And don't forget about the daily ritual of the elevator duck ride between the rooftop to the fountain to the lobby.