Why I love Memphis
I have been so fortunate to have met so many fabulous people in my life. Pat, like Julia is multi-faceted. A couture designer (her creations have graced the windows of some of the most prestigious department stores in America). Her collection of designs has been displayed at Kensington Palace. She is an amazing philanthropist but when it comes right down to it; Pat Kerr Tigret is one of the most joyful, fun, and giving people I have met. Although we don’t see each other often, we always manage to pick up where we left off. On my most recent trip to Memphis I reached out and although she just returned from London, she showed no signs of jet lag and was the ever-perfect hostess while we filled in the missing years and covid catch up while sipping cocktails. During our visit, constantly observing her nesting doves who had taken on residence on her balcony. The joy Pat finds in everything in her life and city is contagious. Knowing her means loving all Memphis has to offer.
I will share some of my favorite Memphis spots, many that Pat has introduced me to.
Where to Stay:The Peabody HotelI mostly go to Memphis to get on one of the American Queen Voyage boats. It never disappoints. How can you not love the Peabody hotel? Legendary for its charm, elegance, gracious hospitality, and rich history. This Memphis icon, opened in 1869, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is world-famous for its five resident ducks, who march daily through the lobby. The best time for the duck march is at cocktail time five o’clock. This event never loses its charm with me, and you can’t help but fall in love with the Duck Master, whether you are 5 or 75. The rooms are pristine and lovely, the amenities plentiful and great coffee shop with gorgeous pastries. The restaurants are first class under the direction of Chef Andreas Kistler.
Where to Eat (Walking Distance from the Peabody)The best breakfast in Memphis! Sugar Grits – 150 Peabody Place 901-249-5206Breakfast and especially grits are taken very serious here, under the guidance of Chef Kevin Harris and the most charming server Talia Mosby! I will make this a must every trip. So good!McEwen’s 120 Monroe Ave. Memphis 901-527-7085I have been coming to this restaurant with American Queen executives and staff for over 10 years. You can count on a perfect gin martini; any classic cocktail will be well prepared. The food is creative and satisfying without a lot of fuss. Always a nice selection of fish dishes, braised pork osso buco and a classic ribeye.
Flight 39 S Main St, MemphisA favorite of Pat’s and I have enjoyed it for 10 years. They do a great job. Small plates to entrees, creative tasting menus. Small plates of soups, salads & entrees plus flight pours of wine in a posh surrounding. The deviled eggs with crispy gulf oysters are a favorite plus the ocean flight of New Orleans BBQ Shrimp, Jumbo Lump Crab Cake, Lobster Ravioli Worth getting in an Uber for!The Beauty Shop (Brunch)“Look Good. Eat Good.” are the words emblazoned on the front windows at the Beauty Shop. This hip and trendy restaurant in the Cooper-Young district of midtown Memphis does both, as it conjures up images of a ‘50s-style beauty shop, formerly Priscilla Presley’s curl-and-dye spot. It’s a camp wonderlandVery creative takes on classic benedict, such as the Beneduck a crispy sugar & spice duck, almond skordalia, arugula,hot pepper jelly, poached eggs, and smoked paprika hollandaise. So much to choose from, everyone will be happy. Great brunch drinks as well.
Andrew Michael, 712 W Brookhaven Cir, Memphis, Hog & Hominy 707 W. BrookhavenYou cannot go wrong with any of Michael and Andrews restaurants. Born and bred Memphians, Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman opened Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen in 2008 to feature innovative Italian cooking rooted in Southern tradition. Their second restaurant, Hog & Hominy, is a wood burning, neighborhood eatery and was named one of the top new restaurants by GQ Magazine, Southern Living, and Bon Appetit as well as a semi-finalist for Best New Restaurant from the James Beard Foundation. I met these guys through Julia Reed and have been a longtime fan. Catherine & Mary’s, the chefs’ first restaurant in Downtown Memphis, opened in September of 2016 and brought together their blend of grandmother cooking, Italian philosophy of dining, and southern ingredients to the heart of the city.In January of 2018, the chefs opened their second downtown restaurant, located in the Old Dominick Distillery on South Front Street. This most recent addition embraces a new and exciting restaurant concept, featuring an open kitchen, wood fire cooking and a raw bar, all overlooking the Mississippi River in the South Main Arts District of Downtown Memphis.
The Music Scene (and history)I love, love the Stax Museum of American Soul Music and how can you not visit Sun Studios when in Memphis?On Beale Street BBKings and Blues City Café still seem to rule.
Distilleries, Breweries, Dive Bars
Old Dominick Distillery 305 S. Front Street 901-260-1250
High Cotton Brewing Co. 598 Monroe Street 901-543-4444
Find your way to the best dive bar in Memphis for a late-night Soul Burger at Ernestine & Hazel’s (great juke box) 531 S. Main 901-523-9754