Monday, April 09, 2007
barbeque, memphis style!
mmm...here it is, 'cause this was what the trip was really all about, now wasn't it!? o.k., maybe not all, but close! today i'll do the b.b.q., and later i'll do more about our memphis 'adventures'. we did do a pretty good 'test-tasting' of the barbeque joints...we decided we liked the 'wet' b.b.q. (covered in sauce while cooking) over the 'dry' (a dry mixture of seasonings rubbed into the meat before cooking) b.b.q., although i did like some of the 'dry' b.b.q. with sauce added later at the table! we asked several locals what was their place was, and in asking maybe a dozen different folks, we got nearly a dozen different answers! we got two people that said the same place, "rendezvous", but they both warned us the same thing...that "the waitstaff can be a little rude". it was on our list of places to try, (yes, we really did have a list!) but there were so many other places that we passed on someplace that's gonna be rude! why reward a business for THAT?!
we stopped in on the "blues city cafe" on our first night in memphis. it was right on beale street and it was really the first place we saw and it smelled really, really good! o.k., at this point we were really hungry, and anything would have smelled good, i think! oh yeah, i almost forgot this part...when we got off the plane in memphis, the airport smelled like barbeque! SERIOUSLY!!! we had left pretty early in the morning, and we had only eaten a crummy burger on our layover in minneapolis (which kicked in my asthma for some reason) so we ended up in blues city cafe starving! they had a bit of a wait, but it was sooo worth it! there is an open place where they put the orders together, and we watched the guys putting together the plates, and they were pretty amazing! they opened up the huge racks over the pit full of ribs, and it was beautiful! this place turned out to be hubby's favorite. i tried several times to get a shot of the guys serving up the food, but the shots never came out, due to the fast moving of the subjects and the low light at the time! ( and, i am in no way the best photographer in world!) LOL!
blues city cafe is across the street from bb kings place, you can see it in the distance here with the big neon fork! i took this picture of bb's place 'cause i like bb king...that's what my cat is named, bb! we went there on the last night to have a drink and listen to some great music, but we did not eat there this time. we have eaten at bb king's before though. we did the gospel brunch while in new york, and it was so good, it would make you wanna slap your mama! (o.k. nothin' that good, my mama would slap me back, but just always wanted to say that!) if you ever get a chance to do one of those (or eat!) at bb's you should...absolutely fabulous!
the next day, we tried the interstate barbeque, and it was pretty good too. a very casual place and i liked it fine. i had pulled pork, and it had a tasty sauce. but they had something called a 'sock-it-to-me cake', and it came all warm from the oven and glazed with a sugar glaze....mmm! unbelievably delicious!
later that evening we ate at isaac hayes restaurant...did you know he could cook?! i didn't! well, this one was MY favorite! i bought his cookbook too...what, you didn't know he had a cookbook too!? me either! i learned a lot in memphis! isaac hayes music-food-passion it had great atmosphere, and i felt a little underdressed in a tank top and jeans, even though it was basically in a mall, the peabody place. i had pulled pork again, and it came with your choice of two sides, which i chose sweet potatoes and collard greens. it was divine! and i ate it ALL! here is where the 6 pounds came in, i think...i ususally go to a restaurant and only eat half of whatever i order. there is usually sooo much food. our hotel did not have a refrigerator or microwave, so there didn't seem to be any point to taking it back to eat later, so i ate everything or close to it.
there were two more b.b.q. places that we tried, corky's and pig on beale. corky's was one we had on our list, and we had asked for directions there, and ended up taking a 'tour' of memphis trying to find it! when we got there the place was packed, but it was very delicious. the top photo is from corky's. that was the only time i got something other than pulled pork...i got sliced beef brisket. and it was a little bit dry, but there was a lot of it...hubby had to give me a 'helping hand' with that generous portion! pig on beale was our last night in memphis, and we were actually on our way to eat at blues city one more time. i think we should have gone to blues city cafe again! pig on beale was o.k...just not fabulous!
so there it is...hubby's fav was blues city cafe, it was my second favorite. it had great barbeque, the delicious flavor and the meat was so tender it just pulled off the bones, no knife neccesary, just a lot of napkins! but i like pulled pork, and the blues city cafe only has ribs, so my favorite was isaac hayes place. it had great pulled pork with delicious sauce, and the sides were almost better than the barbeque! hubby had to work a bit to get the meat off the ribs, so he was a little less enthusiastic about isaac's, but still agreed it was very tasty. and isaac hayes cookbook, well, that was very interesting as well! i had it read nearly completely before we left memphis! i came away from memphis with a different appreciation for isaac hayes as well, although i always liked him alright...i just only knew him as the guy that wrote the theme from "shaft" (that won an oscar, grammy AND golden globe awards!) and the 'duke of new york city' from the movie "escape from new york"! so much more to him than just that!