We’ve been on the road for almost a week and a half now and I have barely touched on the amount of awesome food that we have had since we set off on this amazing Summer adventure.
After our wonderful experience with the discovery of The Cupcake Collection, we moved on to Memphis, TN. Before we even set off on this trip my husband had been talking about eating at Memphis non-stop.
“We will eat here and then there, and then there,” he would say.
“But that’s three meals, and we’re only planning on being in Memphis for a few hours and a night,” I would argue.
And thus the eating adventure in Memphis began, even before we hit the hotel, at Interstate Bar-B-Que. A couple of people suggested I stop at The Neely’s. And if you watch Food Network you would know that The Neely’s have a very popular, very successful cooking show, Down Home with The Neely’s featuring some of the best Memphis-style BBQ and soul food recipes.
I had every intention of going except we wanted to first taste it from the original Neely himself, their uncle Jim Neely. Jim Neely’s Interstate Bar-B-Que has been in business for over 15 years and there is for good reason. The food, especially if you’re going for the pulled pork or beef dishes, is good.
The location, 2265 S. Third in Memphis, is kind of rough around the edges, but I will also say that I thought most places in Memphis, even the more “touristy” parts of town were, though less so. And don’t expect much in terms of service when you get there either. We walked in and no one so much as greeted us. Our server, an older lady, never once cracked a smile or seemed at all that friendly. But the food was good…and really inexpensive! The right wall of the restaurant is covered with photos of celebrities and other people I didn’t know.
The ambiance was casual, the location really not posh at all, and it seemed everyone in there was quiet and really busy digging in and then leaving shortly after.
Worth a try if you’re in Memphis, and if you don’t mind the lackluster in ambiance and service, but can appreciate some awesome ribs!
Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken
Here is another spot that my husband just really, really, really needed to try.
Like with Interstate, this location was in the more “shady” part of Downtown Memphis. How shady you ask? Enough that they feel the need to have a security guard outside of the restaurant in broad daylight. But still the crowds came. Black, White, big and small, people were lining up for Gus’ chicken.
We arrived and there was a crowd waiting outside. An hour and a half wait for a table inside and 30-minute wait for take out. We chose take out and it was way more than 30 minutes.
But the chicken was delicious. A spicy, fried batter coated the juicy, flavorful chicken pieces, and the gallon of sweet tea that my husband ordered seemed to really compliment it all well. For $21.00 we walked away with enough chicken to last us two days. This is also the first time I tried fried pickles. Proof that you can fry anything!
It was pretty good chicken for sure and totally worth a trip into the more shadier part of town to get it! We were ridiculously full after those two meals. I felt so terribly stuffed that I ran to the hotel gym for an intense workout!
Like I said, neither place mentioned above is much to talk about in terms of looks, ambiance, or even service…but we weren’t disappointed with the price or the food.
Other places recommended to me by friends both locals and visitors alike but that we just were to stuffed to try were:
This time, I was willing to sacrifice a little to get good food and I am happy. Next time, I’ll go for the full experience…but not all at once.