This Midtown restaurant is especially popular at lunch, when the inexpensive buffet draws locals. The buffet features an array of curries, vegetables, tandoori chicken, and sauces ranging from mild to fire-in-your-mouth hot. The a la carte menu is only available in the evening, and features standard Indian curries and tandooris. Breads include papadums and chapati. The pleasant room is divided in two parts by a set of steps. Tasteful Indian art, including a spectacular elephant mural, adorns the walls.
If the goats, kept outside in an empty lot next door, don't get you, then the "Diver" will. The Diver is a gallon-sized drink specialty served here at Silky O'Sullivan's. Not a place to go for dinner, this place packs in the hardcore party crowd. If you're feeling brave, ask the bartender for a Fuzzy Leprechaun. This bar hosts a raucous annual St. Patrick's Day celebration each March. By the way, the goats, which are mascots for the establishment, won a permanent place in the bar only after city authorities concluded they posed no threat to public health and safety. Call ahead for details.
Home to both Sun Records and Stax Records, Memphis has always been foremost in finding talent, and the rollicking live music scene is still kicking hard today. Maybe that's why Memphis is mentioned in more songs than just about any other city. So if you're out "Walking In Memphis," just do the electric slide or "Memphis Boogie" right on into the Hard Rock Cafe Memphis and let them ease you into "Memphis Bliss." Their historic building has done time as a recording studio and a saloon, plus the restaurant has an electrifying menu that will make you stomp and shout.
Olive Garden serves up authentic Italian cuisine. Their signature breadsticks and one-of-a-kind menu make them an American icon. Standard Italian options like bruchetta, calamari, ravioli, and eggplant parmigiana line their lengthy menu. More exotic items like salmon, chicken dishes, and innovative pizzas are also available. Enjoy your meal with a bottle from their extensive wine list or one of their tropical island drinks. Finally, top it all off with a little something from their dessert menu their cakes, custards, and ice creams are sure to win you over. Lunch and take out menus are also available.
2265 South Third Street (off I-55) Memphis, TN 38109
The huge BBQ sandwich here is the favorite choice of many and makes an inexpensive lunch by itself. Beef or pork ribs come with beans, slaw or potato salad. (You can get beef ribs in Memphis, but you are likely to get odd reactions when you order them-to locals, "barbecue" means "pork.") The BBQ spaghetti (pasta with barbecue meat and sauce on top) is served with slaw and bread. With most business being take-out, the dining room is small and functional. If you do choose to eat at the restaurant, you will find that the dress is decidedly casual, as are the table manners-the only way to eat ribs is with your fingers.
Take in the atmosphere of the Australian Outback while enjoying mouth-watering entrees and high-quality service. Serving dinner only, Outback Steakhouse offers an extensive menu featuring appetizers, chicken, ribs, steak, seafood, pasta, salads and desserts for moderate prices. Family-friendly, the casual restaurant has something for everyone at its numerous locations in North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia. Outback Steakhouse also offers call-ahead seating and curbside take-away. Check website for locations and menu selections.
A locals' spot, this restaurant has been serving-up barbecue since 1942. Park along the side of the brick building featuring a painting of a pig in a chef's hat. Entering the small dim dining room is like stepping back 30 years, with Formica tabletops and mostly unadorned walls. This spot attracts University of Memphis students searching for a cheap meal such as bologna sandwiches, with a soda or ice tea. Try a hamburger with fries or any of the plates of barbecue or sandwiches served with coleslaw and baked beans.
This tried-and-true Memphis diner offers ample helpings of down-home Southern cooking. You will not find any cafeteria-style okra here - the type with lots of batter encapsulating a soggy bit of okra - but rather the thin-sliced, lightly floured, pan-fried variety. Other standards include chicken-fried steak, fried green tomatoes (in season) and a mouth-watering selection of homemade pies. An out-of-the-way local favorite thanks to its blue plate lunch specials, the restaurant is inexpensive and often crowded. With its mix of country kitchen decor and local university sports memorabilia, the Cottage is a clean and friendly place, but nothing fancy.
3519 Walker Avenue Between Patterson and Highland Memphis, TN 38111
An Eastern Orthodox Priest runs this unassuming restaurant. It is often difficult to find a table, but worth the wait. Try the huge, fluffy homemade rolls, both wheat and white. The omelets can be ordered with a variety of toppings including spinach, mushrooms and feta cheese. On the side, try the sauteed potatoes, which can be topped with black beans, Swiss cheese, green onions or salsa. The decor is simple with red and white checkered tablecloths and few pictures. There are two dining rooms or you may eat at the bar. Classical music, makes this a pleasant place to start the day.
This local institution brings a little bit of New Orleans to Memphis, serving dishes such as trout amandine, shrimp wrapped in bacon, catfish and bread pudding. It also offers a selection of steaks and chicken dishes. Desserts, including the bread pudding, are well done here, too. Many people come back again and again for the kahlua or the Granny Smith apple pies. Mortimer's looks the way restaurants looked in your childhood, decked out in what might be called "comfort décor," which matches the comfort food it serves. Memphians are continuing the tradition by bringing their older children here, but over the years the dress has become more casual.
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