Hot!2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas

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ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 13:56:25
I choose the peach malt and it was very good!  While they did not use fresh peaches, they did scoop out quite a few from a big jar of preserved peaches.  The malt gave it a nice little extra flavor.  The portions were soda fountain size as you can see form the picture.  We also had a front row seat for the various soda orders, all of which are made from scratch with ice, flavoring, water and seltzer...cokes, 7-ups, Dr. Pepper's, all made right in front of us.  Pretty cool!

 
buffetbuster is correct in saying the pimento cheese sandwich was really good...just simple stuff combined for a really nice between meal treat!  We were cautious with our ordering as a much larger and heavier stop was only minutes away!  
 
BTW - the staff adopted us....three skinny little kids from the northland hungry for food, milk shakes and conversation!  This is a highly recommended stop....and do it at lunch time!
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 14:01:36
Cousin Johnny in the mirror and all the equipment for some great shakes, malts and soda fountain treats!
 

 
Note the three seltzer and water handles in the foreground which are used continuously for making all the various soda drinks to order.
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 14:07:17
One more time with the slugburger thing....
 
Beef burger on the left...slugburger on the right.  Both with cheese (add-on) and mustard, onion & pickle (standard issue)...
 

 
They really look similar but the taste is where we parted ways....
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 14:11:29
For the record...the peanut butter (scooped right out of the jar in front of us) and banana (sliced right up in front us) milk shake ALSO had several shots of hot fudge added by both recommendation and then request!
 
Our young server did the recommending and the dynamic duo playfully choked out the request before she had completed the sentence! 
BuddyRoadhouse
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 15:38:50
ChiTownDiner BTW - the staff adopted us....three skinny little kids...
Who are you trying to fool?
 
Buddy
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 17:26:16
Great photos CTD!  And how could I forget the extra scoop of hot fudge?
ChiBears15
Hamburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 17:48:47
ChiTownDiner,
 
Did you really mean what you told me about slugburgers tasting like saw dust? " />
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 17:52:12
You would think with four stops already in Corinth, we would be done, but up next was the big meal of the day!  Martha's Menu is reviewed on Roadfood and we decided as long as we were in town, we mind as well check them out, too!
 
Martha's

is a popular place in the center of town and when we walked in around 1:00PM, the place was still hopping from people finishing up their lunches.  You can order off of their regular menu

or the specials board up on the wall. 

When our waitress walked over to our table, we she was blinking her right eye almost non-stop.  She told us she slept in her contacts a few days earlier and she couldn't get the one out.  Man, isn't that asking for an infection?  Nevertheless, she just kept on working.
 
All three of us went for specials.  Johnny went for the fried chicken, with sides of cabbage, corn and potato salad. 

Yes, that is actually some seriously whipped potato salad.  Johnny liked everything on his plate, especially the juicy fried chicken and the highly seasoned (lots of pepper) corn, but he was so full, he didn't even come close to finishing it. 
 
Both CTD and I went for the ham and dumplings,

which we agreed on seemed to be a dish more at home in Pennsylvania Amish Country.  The best thing on my plate was the butter beans, which I expected to be typical limas, but were a brown bean that was seasoned to a little on the sweet side.  I also didn't expect the creamed potatoes to be regular mashed potatoes.  The dumplings were soft without being gooey and were the perfect compliment for the salty ham.  A shocklingly big chunk of sweet cornbread completed the plate.  We were all wishing we could have had this plate in front us when we were hungrier.
 
I would have been just fine without dessert, but we all know better.  CTD ordered both the moist chocolate cake

and the chocolate cobbler. 

As much as I love chocolate, the idea of chocolate cobbler isn't appealing, but it really is better than it sounds.  Maybe too rich, though.
 
As I was taking photos of our food, the owner walked half way across the room and said to me in a loud voice, "Hey, you can't do that here!"  I barely had time to react when he got a big grin and said, "I'm just messin' with ya!"  He came over several times during the meal when he had a free moment and chatted us up.  Couldn't ask for a nicer guy and he really got me good!
 
Martha's Menu
702 Cruise Street
Corinth, MS
662-287-2590
 
Directly across the street from Martha's was this nice mural.

 
At this point, we were completely stuffed and ready to finally leave Corinth, but not completely done with Mississippi just yet!
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/03 18:04:07
I don't think of tamales as being as thin as Dilworths' version.  Is that typical of tamales in the region?
 
Great report so far!
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 07:41:25
will_work_4_bbq
I would love to know what that grape shake tastes like!  I wonder if it's green or a deep purple?  Did you happen to see one?  Now I'll be pondering this..... 
Interesting question.  We did not see a grape shake, but I assumed a grape shake would be purple.  I have never seen a green grape shake, but it certainly is possible.  Maybe CajunKing can order when when he stops in.   Does a grape shake go with a slugburger?
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 07:46:17
ScreamingChicken
I don't think of tamales as being as thin as Dilworths' version.  Is that typical of tamales in the region? 
These are definitely the thinnest tamales I have ever eaten in Mississippi.  They are typically more along the lines as shown in the review for White Front Café.  But then, we are a couple hours away from the river and Mississippi tamales is more of a Delta thing, although you can find it anywhere in the state. 

post edited by buffetbuster - 2013/11/04 07:47:53
TnTinCT
Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 09:22:15
I am even more amazed now that  you've shown what you ate before the actual Roadfood tour !! 
The slugburger discussion reminds me of the time I was visiting my sister in Huntsville, Alabama. We hit a place called Dubs, which looks like a classic roadfood joint. I was very excited, until I got my burger. I was hard-pressed to identify what was in the bun as "beef" - and looking back after this discussion probably had myself a slugburger. I will join the crowd on the side of "yuck". I don't think I was able to eat more than half and that was pushing it. Count me in as one of the northern Yankees that just doesn't get it.
easydoesit
Double Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 09:53:35
BB,
After seeing the ham and dumplings on the menu board, that was just what I wanted, so I'm glad to have gotten a look at it.  Did the ham seem a little skimpy?  Or maybe there was more under the dumplings?  Or maybe it's just me.
 
CTD,
Thanks for the side by side of the two burgers.  Could fool me, at least til the first bite.
 
I wonder, do they really sell, are they really popular, or more an historical novelty?  I guess if they're on so many menus after so many years, there's got to be people that buy them.
 
Boy, that sounds like I've already made up my mind that they're bad.
 
 
love2bake
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 09:58:42
CTD - Great photo of the soda fountain counter!  I, too, am a big fan of malt--never would've thought to put it with peach, but I bet it was delicious. 
 
BB - I believe I could eat at Martha's for a month and be happy.  What a menu, and seriously--those prices?  Crazy to a California dweller.
 
Love the report, but your eating schedule?!?!  Ack!  I'd never make it at one of these gigs. " />
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 11:08:11
TnTinCT-
I said several times during this long day in Mississippi that I was looking forward to the tour when I wouldn't have to eat as much!  And it sure sounds like you had an accidental slugburger.
 
easydoesit-
You would have liked those ham and dumplings!  There wasn't a lot of pieces of ham, but they were sliced extremely thick.  And at those prices, we could hardly complain.
 
I still highly encourage you to try the slugburger.  There certainly are enough restaurants out there that make them, so somebody surely is eating them.  But, this must be one of those dishes you have to grow up around to truly appreciate.  If you do get to try one, please report back and let us know what you thought of it.
 
love2bake-
Really, how about those prices?  Pittsburgh is still a relatively cheap place to live, but they were even shocking to me.  I can only imagine to California eyes!
 
Oh, and the tour is not an overwhelming amount of food in such a short amount of time as when we are out on our own.  The tour is also much better paced.  This is just ChiTownDiner whipping cousin Johnny and I into shape for the challenges ahead!
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 13:59:58
A little less than an hour after leaving Corinth, we pulled into Holly Springs looking for our final stop in the Magnolia State, Phillips Grocery


A little history

on the place shows the building goes back to 1882, but has "only" been serving hamburgers since 1930's.
 
When I first came here about 15 years ago, it was one of my favorite early Roadfood visits.  It is at the top of a hill, next to the railroad tracks on a side street that the modern highways have left behind.  It was a little rundown, if you know what I mean.  Nowadays, it all spruced up with a fresh coat of paint, no longer dusty and dark.  If memory serves me right, their tables made from an old tree trunk, a big spool used for wire and school desks.  Only the school desks remain, sitting unused as all the customers we saw on this day sat at regular tables and picnic benches.  At least the hornets nest

is still hanging from the ceiling.  My Filipino girlfriend told me that these are symbols for good luck in parts of Asia.  Despite these changes, the Phillips is still charming

and quite the tourist destination.  Based on the old cars with out of state license plates parked in front and the accents on the drivers, I don't think there was one local eating there.
 
You place your order at this counter,  

with a close-up

of the burger half of the menu.  I can't imagine coming here and getting any other sandwich but the burger.
 
Both Johnny and I went for the single,

which is a third pound patty, dressed their traditional way:  mustard, pickle and onion.  They use fresh ground beef here and it tastes like it.  It is also well seasoned and when you combine that with the fact it is cooked on a flat-top griddle that dates back to the 1930's, you have the recipe for an outstanding burger.  I failed to pay attention to what CTD ordered, thinking he got the same thing we did.  Instead, his burger was the Phil-Up, with bacon, ham, cheese, lettuce, tomato and mayo.  Sorry, no photo.  Hopefully, CTD will chime in and give his opinion or maybe even a photo.
 
The fried okra

ordered as a side was nothing special and the fried pie

was a disappointment.  Some just grab a moon pie from the table

for dessert.
 
Even though Phillips Grocery isn't the same place it was 15 years ago, you can't hold that against it.  I will absolutely return here for a burger anytime I am in Northern Mississippi.
 
Phillips Grocery
541A Van Dorn Avenue
Holly Springs, MS
601-252-4671
 
CTD and Johnny checked out the restored train station and train cars,

while I sat on the porch and moaned from all the food.  We got back in the car and headed for Memphis. 
crew84row
Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/04 15:57:04
Looks like a fresh coat of paint on the front trim and some cleanup inside (table cloths, fewer desks arranged differently and cleaned up tubs) since I was through there a year and a half ago.  Burgers look the same and that's what counts, I guess.
 
After that full day of eating, a train ride and a nap back to Memphis would have been welcomed .
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 07:49:39
Once back in Memphis, we checked into our hotel in downtown's Court Square where we would be staying for the rest of the trip.  Both Cousin Johnny and I took long naps before we departed for dinner.
 
Thanks to this thread, a bunch of us attending the event decided to a tour eve meal at the famous Charlie Vergos Rendezvous was in order. 

I tried to make a reservation ahead of time, but they only accept it for parties of 15 or more during the week or 25 or more on weekends!  At the time I called, we were sitting at 13 expected diners, so we were just under the limit.  The walk to the Rendezvous was a quick ten minutes from the hotel and on the way we ran into Boyd (who goes by the screen name schlotz), who we knew from previous tours.   When we arrived a few minutes before the designated 8:00PM meeting time, there were plenty of people milling around outside, which was a problem since we really didn't know what the others in the party looked like.  I went downstairs to put our name on the list and the young man in front of me asked if there was a large party under the name of Roadfood.  I stuck out my hand and introduced myself to Danny (screen name ChiBears15).  The hostess told us it would be about a 45 minute wait, so we went back upstairs to join the rest of the group, which now included Gary (big_g) and Wayne (DCBuckeye
 
The seven of us stood around and chatted, straining to hear the names called over the loudspeaker.  When our name was called, we were still only at seven people and they led us to a table that could have easily fit 20!  We assured them that many more people are coming.  Eventually, we were joined by Joe (joseiw) and Kerry from Wichita, Stephen Rushmore, plus Chris, Amy and Judy Rushmore, who came from the airport.  Terri and Tim (TnTinCT) had let us know earlier that they were getting in later than expected, so would not be able to join us.
 
I did take a few photos of the food, like the barbecue nachos

and the combination rib and pulled pork plate,

but this night was about getting together with old friends and meeting new ones.  I spent most of the time talking with Gary, who was to my left and Danny, directly across from me.  I liked both of them immediately and it made me think about what a good group of people we have on the tour this year.
 
Dinner finally broke up around 10:30 and we walked back to the hotel.  From there it was straight to bed, because we had a big day tomorrow and we had an early morning pre-tour meal planned!
 
Someone out there had a group photo taken, though I'm not sure who.  Hopefully, it will get posted.  
wanderingjew
Sirloin
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 08:07:25
buffetbuster 

I did take a few photos of the food, 
but this night was about getting together with old friends and meeting new ones. .  

 
buffetbuster
 
You have such a nice way with words
You're much more diplomatic than I could ever be!

ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 08:08:25
As mentioned, at Martha's Menu I opted for the ham and dumplings also with mashed potatos, cabbage and under the corn bread, corn....which was very, very sweet!
 

 
While the ratio in the ham and dumplings is up for debate, I am a dumpling guy and they were just how I like 'em!  Perfect size, light and covered in gravy!
 

 
I didn't really know what to expect with chocolate cobbler, but it was warm, gooey and delicious!
 
As buffetbuster mentioned, the café was a buzz of locals all greeting each other and catching up on the town's events.  The owner made several trips over to our table to make us feel welcome!  A very nice touch!
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 09:18:06
Here's another inside shot at Phillips Grocery.
 

 
And of course, my Phil-Up burger already described above.
 

 
It was a solid burger made all the better by the Roadfood surroundings and cliental.  And speaking of cliental, we ran into a group of vintage auto enthusiasts.  There 16 in the group, some couples, some friends and some solos.  They travel from California to Hershey PA for the auto auction and then each of the 16 purchases a 1963 (I believe) or older car.  They then drive cross country back to CA each day hitting the road for 100-200 miles.
 
They hit a lot of backwoods places which how we came upon the group.  Some really great cars and all of them appeared to be in excellent shape.  They did mention that they travel together so as to be able to render assistance for the frequent break downs along the way.
 

 
Here's just one example...sounds like a fun trip! 
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 09:32:11
Not being a huge fan of the Rendezvous either, I was along for the chance to meet and talk with several of the folks that would be on our bus tour for the next several days.  As their bbq is passable, I opted for the bbq nachos shown above and this...
 

 
...a sausage and cheese plate dusted with Rendezvous dry seasonings.  While not up to the  cheesehead standards of the Contingent, it certainly provided a nice change of pace.  This plate was finished off!
 
With a table hosting approximately 15 Roadfooders and no shortage of cameras, I am hoping we get a few more photos added...I know Danny, Chris, Stephen among others were snapping away!
 
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 09:51:07
WJ-
The company was so good, it really didn't matter that the food was average at best.  The ribs were a little tougher than usual and I'm not someone who loves the fall off the bone ribs.  On a scale of one to ten, I would give the food about a four that night, with most in the group agreeing.  As far as I am concerned, the Rendezvous is one of those places everyone should visit once just to experience it, but after that, there are too many other great bbq choices in town.
post edited by buffetbuster - 2013/11/05 09:52:54
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 09:52:07
CTD-
Thanks for the great photos and the additional details.  Not being a car guy, I didn't pay much attention to the classic cars parked out front.
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/05 09:53:21
buffetbuster

CTD-
Thanks for the great photos and the additional details.  Not being a car guy, I didn't pay much attention to the classic cars parked out front.

 
I was so intent on looking at them, that I only took 4 pictures and they were all the same car!  
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 13:52:21
A big thanks to ChiBears15 for sending me a photo of the group meal at Rendezvous.

Starting at the front from the left, that is Amy, Joe, Boyd, Danny, Wayne, Gregg, Johnny, myself, Gary, Kerry and Chris.  Stephen and his mother must have already departed by the time the photo was taken.
post edited by buffetbuster - 2013/11/06 14:38:04
Michael Hoffman
Double-chop Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 13:58:26
buffetbuster

CTD-
Thanks for the great photos and the additional details.  Not being a car guy, I didn't pay much attention to the classic cars parked out front.


Well I love that '55 Ford Victoria convertible.
Sundancer7
Fire Safety Admin
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 14:16:11
Michael Hoffman

buffetbuster

CTD-
Thanks for the great photos and the additional details.  Not being a car guy, I didn't pay much attention to the classic cars parked out front.


Well I love that '55 Ford Victoria convertible.

 
Good call Michael.  My buddy had one when I was in high school with dual glass pack mufflers.  The car shown on Roadfood is famous and is featured on a lot of car sites.  Unusual color and not my favorite but cool.
 
Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN

ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 14:28:49
Michael Hoffman

buffetbuster

CTD-
Thanks for the great photos and the additional details.  Not being a car guy, I didn't pay much attention to the classic cars parked out front.


Well I love that '55 Ford Victoria convertible.

 
And there were 15 more each equally as intriguing that I didn't get pictures of!  Sorry!
Michael Hoffman
Double-chop Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 14:45:20
I forgive you. My father's '55 Victoria convertible was picked out by my mother. The color combination she chose was as tasteful as her cooking: Royal Purple and Ivory. The Royal Purple was the under-the-chrome color.
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 15:39:28
Got any pictures of that? Sounds like a looker!
Michael Hoffman
Double-chop Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 15:49:25
It broke the camera. I forgot to mention, the Continental kit was black.
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 16:01:31
Despite the fact that there was a busy day ahead of visiting the best Roadfood restaurants in Memphis, six diehards met in the lobby of the Springhill Suites at 6:30AM for a pre-tour meal.  Michael Stern, Stephen Rushmore, Chris Ayers, ChiTownDiner, Cousin Johnny and I piled into one extra large SUV and headed for Bryant's Breakfast
 
Bryant's


started as a bbq parlor, but soon found their niche instead was serving breakfast.  One of the nice things about this place is that they open at 5:30AM and they are so popular, you will find a line at all times during the morning.  
 
What exactly does Bryant's specialize in?  Here

is clue #1  And the back of the employee's t-shirts

is clue #2!
 
We all ordered different items to share and sat down at one of the communal tables to dig in.  The one item you need to know about is the ham biscuit. 

The ham may have been a little on the mild side, but combined with the pillowy soft biscuit, it made a wonderful combination.  Other things tried in a biscuit were the tenderloin

and the city ham,

which also included an egg.  Nothing wrong with either one, but the meats did not rise to the level of the biscuit.
 
A couple cinnamon rolls

were split among the group and they do ask if you want it heated up.  Even warm with icing running down the sides, it seemed like it could have been fresher and this was not a favorite among the group.  I did like the bacon pancakes,

but maybe that is because everything tastes fine covered in syrup, because the bacon didn't add much other than texture.
 
While the rest of us ordered judiciously because of the amount of great restaurants we would be visiting in a few hours, the ChiTownDiner doesn't intimidate so easily.  He went with something called "The Sampler",

which includes, three scrambled eggs, biscuits, gravy, bacon, sausage, ham, a tenderloin and a potato pancake.  You can't stop the ChiTownDiner, you can only hope to contain him!
 
Halfway through our meal, Jane Stern arrived, with a cup from Starbucks in her hand.  
 
Even though all the food at Bryant's isn't great, it is still an ideal stop for a quick bite before your day starts and the long lines prove Memphians love the place.  The crowd was a mixture of blue/white collar and also included three motorcycle policeman.  Stick to the ham biscuits and you will walk out satisfied!
 
Here is the review Michael Stern wrote from our visit.
 
Bryant's Breakfast
3965 Summer Avenue
Memphis, TN
901-324-7494
 
We headed back to the hotel to get ready for the beginning of the official tour.      
post edited by buffetbuster - 2013/11/06 17:26:03
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 16:47:23
This was an interesting first stop in that it seemed like half the town passed through while we were in there.  At one point, the line was 40 plus long!  Here's one more look at the sampler with a side of pie...custard I believe.  Never to early for pie!
 

 
Here's a look at our early morning scouting team joined by Jane Stern after a quick Starbucks stop!
 

 
Note the debris field in the middle of the table!
 
Officially, we were now ready to start the food tour!!!
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 16:52:05
easydoesit - They seem pretty popular with the number of places serving them.  And then of course, we got guys like CajunKing running around the countryside singing their praises! 
 
L2B - I am a malt guy with my favorite being cherry.  I was surprised with as broad a selection, that cherry was not on the list.  My cherry malt at Wiles-Smith Drugs was only average the day before.
agnesrob
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 16:58:41
Just an incredible report! Such great looking food!
jackzig
Junior Burger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 17:03:02
I'm from Baltimore, my grandmother use to make "meat cakes" which had moistened white bread, and onion added to the ground beef. It's actually a German recipe.
will_work_4_bbq

We never called it a slugburger, but I grew up thinking that you had to add moistened bread and an egg to your ground beef before making burger patties.  Then they were grilled outside.  After I grew up and left home, I realized that it was simply my Mom being thrifty and trying to make the meat stretch.  Imagine my surprise - and delight -  when I tasted my first 100% beef burger! 


buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 17:22:20
About the group photo from Bryant's:  did you notice how much of the debris is sitting where ChiTownDiner had been sitting?
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 17:24:35
jackzig-
Welcome to Roadfood!  I grew up in a German household, but that doesn't sound familiar.  Was it made with beef or some other meat?  Was it good?
CajunKing
Sirloin
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 17:40:38
I love the line about the extra large SUV.... WELL DUH look at the eaters that went into poor SUV.  Stephen could have been the toothpick! 
 
Easy - The slugburger is popular in it's own region.  Each and every place I went to the other day had fast food chains within minutes.  The locals kept coming in ordering and heading out.  CF Penn was the busiest of the day, but each and everyone easily served 25 to 50 people in the 20 minutes are so I was inside each.   Speed is amazing at these places, you order and then within 2-3 minutes you are handed your bag ready to go, and that is because they had to wait on fries.
 
Think of it like a Chicago Style HD, all those places making them and all those people eating them, now condense that into only a small handful of places that offer it and you can quickly see that they are popular and busy.
jackzig
Junior Burger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 17:42:00
I liked them when I was a kid. I tried to recreate them a few months ago but the taste wasn't the same. This is as close a recipe as I could get, the ones I remember were made with all ground beef: (credit to Rachel Rapport - Coconutsandlime.com)
Meat Cakes (Frikadellen)
Ingredients:
2/3 lb lean ground beef
1/3 lb ground pork
1/3 lb ground veal
1 egg, beaten
1 small onion, diced
1-2 slices soft sandwich bread, torn into bite-sized pieces
salt
freshly ground black pepper
Directions:
Mix together all ingredients in a medium bowl. Form into about 6 flat patties. Set aside. Heat some canola oil in a skillet. Add the patties and cooking, turning once until cooked all the way through and browned on both sides. Drain on paper towel lined plates. Serve hot. 
buffetbuster
 
These weren't eaten on a bun, rather severed on a plate with mashed potatoes. Like someone said a little like meat loaf.
 


jackzig-
Welcome to Roadfood!  I grew up in a German household, but that doesn't sound familiar.  Was it made with beef or some other meat?  Was it good?


buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 17:59:27
I do want to invite all those people who attended the tour, but don't post regularly, to comment in this thread.  The rest of the Roadfood.com readers would love to hear your opinions about the places we visited.  So please join in! 
post edited by buffetbuster - 2013/11/06 18:01:10
mayor al
Fire Safety Admin
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 19:01:42
Fantastic report... Looking forward to the next chapter.
love2bake
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 19:56:11
buffetbuster

A big thanks to ChiBears15 for sending me a photo of the group meal at Rendezvous.

Starting at the front from the left, that is Amy, Joe, Boyd, Danny, Wayne, Gregg, Johnny, myself, Gary, Kerry and Chris.  Stephen and his mother must have already departed by the time the photo was taken.

Looks like a very fun group!!  I have to take note of the decor, too, though.  What is going on there???  Athena (or Venus) next to working horses, checkered tablecloths, stained glass--I guess eclectic is the best conclusion.
 
The breakfast place looked fantastic.  Yes, I love desserts, especially love the pies, but breakfast is my food passion. 
 
CTD - I'm going to have to try a cherry malt now!!
Louis
Double Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 21:18:17
buffetbuster

I do want to invite all those people who attended the tour, but don't post regularly, to comment in this thread.  The rest of the Roadfood.com readers would love to hear your opinions about the places we visited.  So please join in! 

 
I'm enjoying the thread.  Studying it.  Taking notes for my huge stack of travel notebooks.  I've attended a few of the President Days gatherings in February, but have not taken a bus tour.  Maybe some day soon I will rectify that omission.
 
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/06 21:23:20
Louis-
We would love to have you join us on a tour someday!  Since Memphis isn't all that far away, do you get down there often?
 
Love2bake-
Yeah, you will not see statues like that at Payne's or Cozy Corner!  Just one of several ways that the Rendezvous is different than other Memphis bbq parlors.
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/07 08:53:59
Did anyone try dipping their Bryant's breakfast biscuits into gravy?  It seems like it might be a nice accompaniment, especially to the tenderloin biscuit.
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/07 13:45:58
ScreamingChicken

Did anyone try dipping their Bryant's breakfast biscuits into gravy?  It seems like it might be a nice accompaniment, especially to the tenderloin biscuit.

 
Is the pope Catholic?  Does a bear....are you thinking this was rookie trip?

easydoesit
Double Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/07 14:41:49
Boy, what a great time by a great looking group!  Thanks for taking us along, and also on the morning scouting trip, by the diehards (BB's term).
 
Those Bryant's biscuits -- just two questions --
 
1.  They look wonderful, but do they have butter on them at all?  Or served without?  What is the preferred way?
 
2.  The tenderloin looked really good too, but, from can't tell from the photo, did they cook the under?
 
easydoesit
Double Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/07 14:49:15
Okay, a third question, about the city ham. In the late 90's, I lost 47 pounds of ugly fat be going low fat diet.  That nice looking trim of fat around the city ham would have been gone first thing in the old days.
 
These days, I might pull it off, or leave some of it there, but it looks like a lot of fat related to meat.  It would certainly change the "mouthfeel" of the chew.
 
What do the regulars do?  Grab it and chomp it?  I'll try that next chance I get.
 
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/07 17:47:58
Finally, FINALLY, it was time to start the official Roadfood bus tour.  We met in the lobby of the hotel around 9:30, boarded the bus and drove the short distance to Gus's World Famous Hot and Spicy Chicken.  

This chicken restaurant began with humble origins in the small town of Mason, TN, eventually opening another location in downtown Memphis.  Apparently, there are now four of them, with another one opening soon in Austin.

Sometimes I will hear a comment along the lines of why should I go on a bus tour, when I can just visit the restaurants on my own.  There are a lot of good answers for that question, but the most obvious is that there are advantages in being part of a group.  And a group led by Jane and Michael Stern opens doors.  Gus's doesn't normally open until 11:00AM and anyone who eats here knows that there is often a long line waiting for a precious table.  Instead, we arrived just before 10:00AM and were welcomed with open arms.  We had the entire place to ourselves!

ChiTownDiner, Cousin Johnny and I ordered the eight piece meal.  But we are much too impatient to wait for chicken to fry, so we (and by we, of course I mean CTD) asked our waitress to bring out a couple slices of pie right away!  The sweet potato pie 

was smooth, with a nice mixture of spices, but the chess pie,

with a brittle top layer was the better of the two.  This was soon followed by a side of fried green tomatoes. 

Not bad, but these were no match for the spectacular ones CTD and I enjoyed at Alcenia's two days earlier.

While devouring the pie, I noticed that some of the people sitting near the open door to the kitchen were getting up and snapping some photos.  With my curiosity piqued, I went over to investigate and got a photo of the fryers working their magic!

 
Eventually, this platter of fried chickeny goodness was delivered to our table. 

With the gorgeous reddish/gold color and the rugged exterior, this is some of the best looking fried chicken imaginable. 

Luckily, Gus's doesn't get by on looks alone, because even on your first bite, you know you are in the presence of greatness!  The skin is indeed spicy with a decided Cajun flavor, though really doesn't bring much in the way of heat.  The inside meat is perfectly juicy, which gets you thinking, is this the best fried chicken I have ever had?  And several people on the tour indeed said it was the best they have ever had. 
 
At one point, Chris Ayers came over to our table and said to me that there is no way that I could say Stroud's in KC is better than this.  This chicken was so good, it was tough to argue.  What I can say is that all the other dishes at Stroud's are of such high quality that the total experience is better.  As for the chicken itself, my top three would be Gus's, Stroud's and Bon Ton Mini Mart and I would be thrilled to eat any of them!
 
Sides of cole slaw and baked beans

came with the meal, but were nothing more than an afterthought.  Besides, we liked the chess pie so much, we ordered another slice,

soon to be attacked by three hungry forks!
 
Gus's is fairly big and open when it isn't full, which gave us a few moments to walk around and socialize,

Before long, it was back to the bus, where there was a buzz over this fantastic meal.   But this was no time to relax, because my favorite bbq parlor in Memphis was just minutes away!
 
Gus's World Famous Hot and Spicy Chicken
310 S. Front Street
Memphis, TN
901-527-4877      
post edited by buffetbuster - 2013/11/08 10:29:46
CajunKing
Sirloin
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/07 19:16:12
3 Hungry Eaters and only 3 pieces of pie... WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT PICTURE???
 
1 lonely little piece of chess pie and 3 HUGE FORKS
will_work_4_bbq
Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/07 22:08:55
I am already sorry I missed this trip!  The Chess PIE!!!  The CHICKEN!!!  Wow!!!
love2bake
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/08 05:40:03
I love this--pie as appetizer!!
 
The chess pie looks amazing with that crunchy top.  Was it regular chess or lemon?
Buffalo Tarheel
Double Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/08 07:41:48
Looks like a great trip - wish I had been able to be there.  Outstanding report and pictures.  You know it was a great trip when it takes until page 6 to get to the official starting point of the tour.  Thanks for sharing the report.
buffetbuster
Porterhouse
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/08 07:48:35
love2bake-
It was regular chess pie and it was good, but nowhere near the best pies we would have on this trip.  For pie lovers like us, this trip was heaven!
 
CajunKing-
We should have had a fourth fork in that slice of pie in your honor!
TnTinCT
Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/08 08:04:35
What a way to start off the "official" trip - Connecticut doesn't have much in the way of great fried chicken, and I had experienced Gus's last year on a trip to Memphis, so I couldn't wait to go again. I think I agree with BB - the total experience (and other dishes) at Stroud's is better, but the chicken at Gus's gets first place in my book. My chicken pictures aren't as good as yours, so will wait to share more pictures when I can add something new!
Big_g
Cheeseburger
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/08 08:39:03
Some of the very BEST chicken I've every had...and the Fried Green Tomatoes were outstanding too. 
So glad I could make the trip...looking forward to the next one =) 
ann peeples
Sirloin
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/08 11:28:56
You guys are killing me with the pie and chicken! Great and fun report!
ChiTownDiner
Filet Mignon
Re:2013 Roadfood Bus Tour Memphis/Arkansas 2013/11/08 12:13:42
Not much to add to buffetbuster's excellent review of Gus's!  But I do have to say that it is always a good thing to begin each meal with pie!  ALWAYS!
 

 
Here's another look at the Chess Pie...we needed a second look also and that's the reason for the 2nd piece...all in the interest of science!
 
While Gus's was really good, and it very nice of them to open early just for us, the next stop was high on my list...
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