If I could choose one Memphis restaurant at which to consistently spend 16 hours of my day (7 a.m. to 11 p.m., the approximate closing hour), I’d hands-down pick Porcellino’s.
Admittedly, I was skeptical of the hours of operation etched onto the doors of James Beard Award nominees Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman’s latest dining home run on Brookhaven Circle. I mean, 16 hours? That’s a long time to be open! But with a coffee “program,” full-service bar, bakery, butcher counter and complete breakfast, lunch and dinner menus, the concept, while seemingly impossible to execute, is both brilliant and well-played from sunrise to sunset. The passion can be tasted, sipped and seen in every single detail. Here’s what you need to know.
I’m a huge fan of the space, a polished, subway-tiled Brooklyn-esque butcher shop with dark and dainty wood tables and chairs. The black-and-white branding ties together the entire vision of the chefs, bakers, baristas and bartenders.
Though I’d gladly be compensated to spend an entire day at the window-lined bar to muse upon the kitchen and customers (any takers?), I have successfully witnessed three prime-time occasions inside the brick establishment: Saturday brunch, Friday night dinner and an afternoon pit stop. The recent Swine & Dine fundraiser for Cozy Corner Bar-B-Q was a memorable hit, too.
Brunch was bustling with diners of all ages, some in line for an exclusive nitro-brewed coffee, while others awaited a fried egg on in-house baked crusty bread with house-cured bacon or sausage. You can grab a loaf or croissant on the way out, too.
On a late Tuesday afternoon, I ran by to scope out the product and take-away offerings. I left with some finely shaved prosciutto; fresh, hand-rolled gemelli pasta; and the Lil Ray Ray spice blend of salts, sugars and zests. I fought the temptation to pick up a soft-cotton, branded T-shirt, though I might cave in soon. The array of cookbooks, specialty foods and butcher cuts was truly remarkable!
A dimly lit late dinner with ambient music completely elevated the surrounding space. The limited number of tables welcomes intimacy and comfort. Portions are shareable, yet small enough to give you the opportunity to try multiple menu items (my kind of place!). The golden dim-sum-inspired bar cart, which sits tableside throughout the meal, offers perfectly plated daily specials. Whimsical and adventurous, the cart brings a treasure and leaves a memory. Oh, and the Relevant Roasters coffee custard dessert (served in a mason jar) is a must!
Ready to check out Porcellino’s? Be sure to tell them StyleBlueprint sent you!
Cara Greenstein is the creator of Caramelized, a food and entertaining blog ranked fifth top food blog by the Austin Chronicle. A native Memphian, Greenstein practices public relations at doug carpenter & associates by day and writes recipes and restaurant critiques by night. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram.