The ever-growing restaurant scene in the Memphis area continues to bring us inspired culinary choices every month. We recently welcomed a hip new watering hole, a delightful grab-and-go charcuterie concept, the city’s first pinball pub, two delicious eateries, and a new location of a long-time favorite. Enjoy the latest and greatest options now open in and around Bluff City!

6 New Memphis Restaurants + Concepts (Updated April 2022)



Cameo

1835 Union Ave Suite 103, Memphis, TN 38104 • (901) 305-6911
Hours: Tuesday through Thursday, 4 p.m. to midnight; Friday through Saturday, 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; closed Monday

When you walk into a cocktail bar with the theme “Fancy Drinks-Party Time,” you know you are in for a good time! Located in The Citizen apartments, Cameo is the fun-filled brainchild of bartenders Paul Gilliam, Mary Oglesby, and McKenzie Nelson. The cocktail menu offers a truly fantastic array of beverages, including classics like a French 75, Whiskey Sour, Manhattan, and Martini. The House Cocktails are must-tries, with unique and exciting concoctions like Gap Year at Burning Man (a potent combo of tequila, mescal, spiced pineapple shrub, lime, Topo Chico, and tajin) and Meiomi Campbell (rye, ginger, lemon, pinot noir, egg white, and balsamic). Shots and shooters, frozen treats, and low- and zero-proof cocktails complete the drinks menu.  You’ll find tasty snacks to accompany the beverage of your choice. Brunch is available on Sundays, perfectly paired with Bloody Marys that range from traditional to Hair of the Hell Hound, sparkling cocktails, coffees with a kick, and an intriguing “Non-Denominational” list of libations.

Bar area at Cameo, a new Memphis restaurant

Cameo is located in the Citizen Apartments. Image: James Lancaster

House cocktail menu at Cameo

A list of cocktails with kitschy names immediately lets you know you’re in for a memorable evening! Image: James Lancaster

Feast & Graze

55 S Main St Suite 101, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 654-5926
Hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; closed Sunday and Monday

The charcuterie boxes, platters, and grazing tables from Feast & Graze are a feast for the eyes and taste buds. Beautifully presented grab-and-go options include the smaller Just for Me Box, featuring one artisan cheese, one charcuterie meat, seasonal produce, chocolate, nuts, and dried fruit. Are you feeling a bit more peckish? Try the deluxe version! Both are available in store. You can also get made-to-order options from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Whipped Goat Toast and Open Face Grilled Cheese make appetizing and out-of-the-ordinary lunches. Pre-order online for classic and signature boxes and grazing platters for parties, groups, or a fun and easy meal. Ideal for larger parties and events, the grazing table is a showstopper, customized to suit you!

Grazing box from Feast & Graze, a new Memphis restaurant

From fruit and nuts to cheese and preserves, Feast & Graze makes sure your lunch is elevated. Image: Facebook

Grazing table prepared by Feast & Graze

A table-long grazing board? We’re in! Image: Facebook

Flip Side

1349 Autumn Avenue, Memphis, TN 38104 • (901) 207-6193
Hours: Daily, 11 a.m. to midnight or later; kitchen closes one hour before closing. 

If you like fun and games with your food and drink, you’re in luck! Memphis’ first pinball pub is open for business in the Crosstown neighborhood. Flip Side features 16 pinball machines, a foosball table, dartboard, and dual-player bars with seating. Pinball enthusiasts will welcome the range of vintage to modern machines, and foodies will appreciate the Caribbean-Latin fusion fare. Chef Jordan Beatty has created a signature Flipsauce to give an extra dimension of flavor to a menu that includes Shrimp and Grits, Flip Side Tamales, and Pollo Adobo Blanco. You definitely won’t go hungry here: a nice array of yummy starters, fresh salads, rice bowls, tacos, burritos, and quesadillas complete the menu selections. Add in a full bar with craft cocktails and good beer, and you’ve got a great afternoon or evening out.

Pollo Adobo Blanco from Flip Side

Pollo Adobo Blanco | Image: Maria Benton

AC/DC pinball machine at Flip Side, a new Memphis restaurant

Get your game on at Flip Side. Image: Cory Owens

Staks Pancake Kitchen

2902 May Boulevard, Southaven, MS 38672 • (662) 404-7825
Hours: Daily, 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The newest location of Memphis-based Staks Pancake Kitchen opened in Southaven to great acclaim. “De Soto County has made us feel very welcomed,” owner Brice Bailey tells us. “The Silo Square development has been a wonderful area to open our third location. We are looking forward to building upon the relationships and cultivating new ones through our menu and great staff and customers.”

The extensive menu features all the local favorites, including Features of the Month and specialty items not on the regular menu. Decadent pancakes, signature coffee concoctions, and clever cocktails give patrons fun new options to try. The regular menu is filled with mouthwatering pancake creations, from the classic to the sophisticated. You’ll also find an over-the-top French Toast selection, an enticing array of omelets, and tummy-filling skillet dishes. Sandwiches, salads, and soups round out the menu.

Blue booths at STAKS Pancake Kitchen, a new Memphis restaurant

Silo Square welcomes Staks Pancake Kitchen! Image: Facebook/@silosquarems

Stuffed French toast from STAKS Pancake Kitchen

Stuffed French toast | Image: Chip Pankey

Tekila Modern Mexican

6343 Getwell Rd, Southaven, MS 38672 • (662) 510-5734
Hours: Monday through Thursday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday through Saturday, 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Sunday, 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Southaven’s Silo Square also welcomed Tekila Modern Mexican, a family-owned eatery serving modern interpretations of authentic Mexican dishes. Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the restaurant has a flavorful menu any time of day! Try breakfast with a Mexican flare, such as Sunrise Sausage Enchilada, Huevos Rancheros, and Chilaquiles. Tacos and burritos, pancakes, and sandwiches are also delicious ways to start the day. Lunch features something for every appetite, from ceviche to tacos to fajitas. Check out Tekila Specialties like the mouthwatering Chiles en Nogada, a roasted Poblano pepper stuffed with ground beef and queso fresco, baked with a toasted almond cream sauce and topped with pomegranate seeds. The dinner menu is chock-full of tasty choices, including the popular Trio Special, a perfect combo of steak, chicken, and shrimp with onions, bell peppers, and tomatoes, topped with queso sauce.

Three tacos from Tekila Modern Mexican

Authentic Mexican food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner? Say no more. Image: Facebook

Uncle Goyo’s Mexican Restaurant

1730 S. Germantown Road, Germantown, TN 38138 • (901) 310-4855
Hours: Monday, Friday, and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday, and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Mexican cuisine is having a moment! The latest restaurant from TACOnganas owner Greg Diaz offers a taste of true south-of-the-border fare. Fresh and bursting with flavor, the menu at Uncle Goyo’s Mexican Restaurant is a departure from standard burrito/taco/fajita choices. This delightfully decorated eatery aims for a more upscale experience, combined with a more sophisticated range of appetizers, salads, entrées, tacos, and desserts. Starters include guacamole, freshly prepared tableside, and Aguachile de Camaron, the chef’s take on a traditional dish of shrimp marinated in lime and chile. If you are in a taco mood, the Festival de Tacos portion of the menu offers fish, cacti, veggie, steak, and chicken — and of course, a TacoNganas-style taco de barbacoa. Signature entrées include the Filete de Pescado en Costra de Cacahuate, a light and flavorful red snapper encrusted in peanuts, and Enmoleadas, traditional enchiladas covered in made-from-scratch mole sauce.  A full bar offers a lovely mix of cocktails using made-in-house syrups and condiments.

Cocktail from Uncle Goyo's Mexican Restaurant

From tacos to cocktails, Uncle Goyo’s Mexican Restaurant offers a variety of flavors from south of the border. Image: Facebook

Fish taco, arrachera taco, and veggie taco from Uncle Goyo's Mexican Restaurant, a new Memphis restaurant

Fish taco, arrachera taco, and veggie taco | Image: Facebook

To explore more culinary destinations across the South, visit our Food & Dining archives.

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Published March 2022
Written by Alissa Harb

In Memphis and the surrounding areas, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to fabulous food. Each month, we welcome new concepts to the local culinary scene, and we happen to be celebrating the return of some old favorites, too! Explore these three new options to give your taste buds a treat.

3 New Memphis Restaurants + Culinary Concepts (Updated March 2022)

Weekend Residency: Kinfolk

358 N. Main Street, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 860-4215
Hours: Saturday, 8 a.m. until sold out; Sunday, 10 a.m. until sold out

If you’ve been missing the sinfully delicious biscuits that once graced Puck Food Hall, you’ll be happy to hear that Kinfolk is officially back! You can look forward to pop-up offerings every weekend hosted by Comeback Coffee. Now available Saturday and Sunday mornings until supplies run out, the pop-ups are manned by Chef Cole Jeanes, who’s sticking to the basics but expects to expand offerings soon. “We currently have a set breakfast/brunch menu based on ‘cathead’ buttermilk biscuits but will be adding a breakfast bowl and brioche bun options very soon to make the items more mobile,” says Cole. “We also plan on a lunch version of our fried chicken sandwich and maybe a simple salad of local greens.”

chicken biscuit photo from @explorereats

Kinfolk‘s fried chicken biscuit, complete with a generous drizzle of hot honey, is the stuff of dreams. Image: @explorereats

You can also expect a variety of biscuit sandwiches on the menu — both sweet and savory — and they feature an impressive lineup of local ingredients, including ethically sourced meat from Home Place Pastures. “We source our pork from them, then meat guru Mitchell Marable at Charcuterie by Paradox turns it into our hickory-smoked coffee bacon, spicy breakfast sausage, and mortadella,” says Cole. “We get our chicken thighs and eggs from Marmilu Farms and our honey from Gus Mitchell of Cranes Nest Honey.”

Head over to the hotspot on Saturday or Sunday, and arrive early to ensure you get your biscuit fix. Oh, and don’t forget to pair it with a pick-me-up from Comeback Coffee’s specialty coffee and teas menu!

biscuit sandwich from kinfolk

This biscuit sammie features locally-produced mortadella, one of many uniquely-Memphis ingredients you can expect to find on Kinfolk’s pop-up menus. Image: Kinfolk

Now Open: Tonica

1545 Overton Park Ave, Memphis, TN 38112 • (901) 474-7693
Hours: Thursday through Sunday, 4:30 p.m. until midnight; closed Monday through Wednesday

An intimate space offering ample bar seating and several dining tables, Tonica is a great option for a date night or an evening out with friends, catching up over cocktails. Sabine Bachmann, the owner of Ecco and Libro, just opened the doors to her newest venture in Midtown — Tonica, a Spanish-style tapas bar on Overton Park. Diners can expect a rich variety of soups, salads, and small plates, plus a shortlist of heartier entrées like paella with your choice of protein. Other favorites include the barbacoa beef and harissa chicken thighs.

Tonica’s Spanish influence also extends to the drink menu, which includes a creative cocktail selection emphasizing specialty gin and tonics. Are you in the mood for wine or bubbles instead? Order by the glass or bottle, and choose from a selection of Cava, red and white wines, and rosé.

A dish at Tonica Memphis, next to a vase of pink flowers

Tonica‘s menu features a list of shareable tapas-style small plates, including flavorful options like spicy Spanish-inspired chicken wings. Image: Instagram

New Location: The Peanut Shoppe

121 S Main St, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 525-1115
Hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.

The Peanut Shoppe‘s co-owner Rida AbuZaineh is thrilled to welcome customers to his new location, which happens to be just down Main Street from the shop’s original storefront. (The original shop was established in 1949!) Earlier this year, the AbuZaineh family closed The Peanut Shoppe briefly before reopening in a beautifully lit new space stocked with crowd favorites like spiced nuts and popcorn, chocolate pecan turtles, and Mediterranean desserts such as baklava and cashew fingers.

the peanut shoppe memphis

Co-owner Rida AbuZaineh is excited to welcome customers, both old and new. Image: The Peanut Shoppe

Rida’s daughter Nura AbuZaineh, who helps with the business while she’s not busy earning her second degree, says that Rida has a few tricks up his sleeve beyond their most popular offerings. “He has his own mix that a few people know about,” she says. “Pineapple chunks, cashew halves, spicy nuts, dark chocolate raisins, salted pistachios, sesame sticks, and redskins.” Nura also hints at new offerings to come, but she doesn’t want to spoil the surprise. Luckily, there are more than enough sweet and savory options to keep us busy. If you’re hosting a March Madness watch party this month, The Peanut Shoppe is the place to stock up on game day snacks!

the peanut shoppe memphis

Not everything is new at The Peanut Shoppe’s new location. The signature Mr. Peanut statue and the century-old peanut roaster will remain in the window to beckon guests. Image: The Peanut Shoppe

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Published February 2022
Written by Gaye Swan

4 New Memphis Restaurants to Check Out (Updated February 2022)

Mugshots Grill and Bar

6400 Goodman Road, Olive Branch, MS 38654 • (662) 420-7793
Hours: Monday through Sunday, 10:45 a.m. to 10 p.m.

It’s all about the experience of “Havin’ a Good Time” at Mugshots Grill and Bar, the Hattiesburg, Mississippi-based regional chain. Just down the road in Olive Branch, the newest location offers an ample selection of delicious burgers from the classic Middleburger to their signature over-the-top The Mugshot – three patties, six bacon strips, two kinds of cheese, and all the trimmings. The wide-ranging menu offers fun starters, fresh salads, and unique sandwiches and hotdogs. The burgers are served up fresh on a warm and toasty sourdough bun and accompanied by crispy beer-battered fries. Grab a beer and settle in to eat; chances are your favorite teams will be playing on one of the TVs in this very sports- and family-friendly bar and grill.

Burger, fries, onion rings, and beer from new Memphis restaurant

Mugshots doesn’t mess around when it comes to burgers. Their signature burger, The Mugshot, comes with three patties, six bacon strips, two types of cheese, and all the trimmings. Image: Facebook

RELATED: The Best Mardi Gras King Cakes … Shipped!

Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken

3100 Forest Hill Irene Road, Germantown, TN 38138 • (901) 853-6005
Hours: Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

It just got easier to get your Gus’s fix with a new location in Germantown. A Memphis tradition, Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken combines the casual, fun feel of a Mississippi Delta juke joint with the scrumptiously spicy fried chicken that put the restaurant on the map. The Germantown location boasts a fun touch in the décor – a giant chandelier at the entrance. It is Germantown, after all! The fun and funky atmosphere is a prelude to the menu, which features all the tried-and-true favorites. As always, Gus’s uses only fresh, natural, hormone-free chicken for their plates, snacks, and individual servings. Must-try sides include baked beans, slaw, fried okra, greens, seasoned fries, and whole jalapenos. Save room for a slice of pie or a root beer float!

Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken platter with chicken, fries, fried green tomatoes, and fried okra

Germantown’s new location of Gus’s offers their signature spicy fried chicken, plus sides like fried okra, fried green tomatoes, fries, slaw, and more. Image: Facebook

The Genre

200 Poplar Avenue, Suite 105, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 410-8169
Hours: Monday and Wednesday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Tuesday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Friday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. to midnight; Saturday, 6 p.m. to midnight; Sunday, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Located downtown, this new urban eatery is your passport to all genres of music, served up alongside a tasty menu of elevated comfort foods. The Genre’s vibe is laid-back and friendly, and you’ll find weekly events such as Taco Tuesdays, Relax & Unwind Fridays, Saturday Night Vibes, and Sunday Funday Brunch. They also observe major holidays with special events, such as Thanksgiving, Valentine’s Day, and Super Bowl Sunday. (Be sure to make a reservation for those!) The menu features boneless chicken wings, catfish, kabobs, and sliders, paired with delectable, lick-your-fingers sauces. Sides include seasoned fries, fried okra, and green beans. If you are looking for lighter fare, they also offer a selection of salads, plus grilled chicken and fish.

Hot Fry from The Genre

Enjoy a decadent dish of loaded fries. Image: The Genre

Reggae Jerk Chicken Kabab from The Genre, a new Memphis restaurant

The Reggae Jerk Chicken Kababs rest atop fresh beans with a pineapple garnish. Image: The Genre

TACOnganas Food Truck

2120 Central Avenue, Memphis, 38104 • (901) 281-7237
Hours: Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Business is booming for TACOnganas. The must-try taco food truck recently opened a fourth location at the corner of Central and Cooper, where the newest truck will be a permanent fixture. The irresistible nganas-style tacos give you a choice of meat, served in a corn tortilla dipped in a flavorful oil made from dried peppers and topped with grilled onions, cilantro, and melted cheese. Savory traditional street tacos, shrimp tacos, burritos, tortas, quesadillas, and tacos de canasta (steamed tacos) complete the menu. Meat choices include al pastor (marinated pork), Asada (thinly sliced grilled beef), barbacoa (slow-roasted and shredded beef), Camarones (marinated grilled shrimp), and carnitas (fried pork).

People dipping tacos into salsa

Dipping your street tacos in TACOnganas’s housemade pepper oil is an absolute must. Image: Facebook

To-go boxes of tacos and fixings

Choose from a variety of taco fillings and fixings. Image: Facebook

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Published January 2022
Written by Gaye Swan

It’s a new year, and what better way to celebrate than embracing a crop of new Memphis restaurants? This month, we welcome back two beloved eateries, say hello to a new coffee and tea shop, and learn about a former cocktail delivery service turned brick-and-mortar watering hole. Here’s to a delicious 2022!

4 New Memphis Restaurants to Check Out (Updated January 2022)

Beans & Leaves

2867 May Blvd., Southaven, MS 38672 • (901) 830-8743
Hours: Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Cozy and welcoming, Beans & Leaves is not your typical grab-and-go coffee shop. “We want our customers to gather, sit, and chat,” owner Margarita LeBlanc says. “The atmosphere of Silo Square, where we are located, is very unique, and we wanted to carry that vibe into our space.”

The eatery serves coffees, teas, gelato, pastries, empanadas, and quiches. The coffee beans are sourced from a five-generation family of coffee farmers in Guatemala. Rich and flavorful pour-overs and nitro cold brews have proven to be extremely popular with customers. Lattes, Americanos, and cappuccinos are included in the extensive coffee options, each one made fresh to order. Prefer a cuppa? Try a tasty London Fog or a detoxifying tea for a healthy boost. The tea leaves come from family-owned farms in Florida and the Mississippi Delta. As a bonus, both the beans and the leaves are sold pre-packaged, so you can enjoy them at home!

RELATED: 10 MORE Rural TN Restaurants Worth the Drive

Ham and cheese quiche from Beans & Leaves, a new Memphis restaurant

Beans & Leaves serves a killer ham and cheese quiche. Image: Margarita LeBlanc

Barista making coffee at Beans & Leaves in Memphis, TN

Order from an extensive list of coffee and tea options, including pour-over coffee, made to order. Image: Margarita LeBlanc

The Farmer at Railgarten

2158 Central Avenue, Memphis, TN, 38104 • (901) 313-0087
Hours: Wednesday through Sunday, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The Farmer is back and better than ever! Closed since 2017, the quintessential farm-to-table eatery opened its new doors at Railgarten in December. “I appreciate the opportunity to reboot The Farmer,” says Chef Mac Edwards. “I never thought this would happen. A big thank you goes to Jack Phillips and everyone at Railgarten. The response has been great!”

Old and new customers alike will appreciate The Farmer’s great new location, not to mention the outstanding menu. Favorites include the pan-seared catfish served with house-made mac and cheese, braised greens, and a smoked tomato sauce – just one of the dishes that brought the original restaurant national attention on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives.” Other popular choices include America’s Cut Pork Chop, Gulf Shrimp and Grits, and the Farmer’s Veggie Plate. Ingredients are sourced locally whenever possible, so you know you are in for a fresh, delicious meal. The cocktail menu is a delight, and be sure to save room for a dessert such as the Gibson Donut Bread Pudding. Yum!

America's cut pork chop from The Farmer at Railgarten, a new Memphis restaurant

America’s Cut Pork Chop from The Farmer is the hearty, stick-to-your-ribs fare we need in January. Image: Jay Adkins, courtesy of Farmhouse Branding

G&T Fizz cocktail from The Farmer at Railgarten

The G&T Fizz is a sight for sore eyes any day of the week! Image: Jay Adkins, courtesy of Farmhouse Branding

Memphis Whistle

2299 Young Avenue, Memphis, TN • (901) 236-7136
Hours: Tuesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

You’ll find a cool and fun vibe at Memphis Whistle, from the warm, eclectic décor and unique beverage offerings to the hearty, comforting food menu. Co-owner and cocktail creator Jef Hicks is serving up a menu of hand-crafted beverages that make excellent use of fresh seasonal fruit and an array of Prohibition-style cocktails. His wife Amanda, aka the Executive Whistle Wench, and Chef Kyle Gairhan have developed a menu that is sure to please.

“The pulled pork and spicy purple slaw that I make are [both] quite popular,” Amanda tells us. “The slaw blends mayo, mustard, a little vinegar, and Sriracha for a best-of-all-worlds flavor explosion.” The pork, used in sandwiches and on nachos, goes very well with Chef Kyle’s ‘From the Gods’ barbecue sauce. The Grizz is an excellent choice for burger-lovers, while vegans will appreciate the Lion’s Mane mushroom bites.

Initially a cocktail-delivery service launched during the pandemic lockdown, the brick-and-mortar space is carefully planned to welcome guests into a comfortable lounge, where you can relax and let go of your day. More traditional seating is available in the dining room – but don’t worry! You’ll find the same fun-and-funky atmosphere everywhere in this colorful and laid-back restaurant.

The Grizz from Memphis Whistle, a new Memphis restaurant

‘The Grizz’ is a must for burger lovers. Image: Memphis Whistle

Lounge at Memphis Whistle

With its warm, eclectic decor, the lounge at Memphis Whistle is designed to help you unwind. Image: Memphis Whistle

McEwen’s

120 Monroe Avenue, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 527-7085
Hours: Lunch — Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Dinner — Monday through Thursday, 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Memphians have gone over a year without the delicious food at McEwen’s, so the reopening of this beloved Southern eatery deserves a mention. The downtown restaurant underwent a total renovation – actually taken down to the studs and completely reconfigured. With cozy touches like original exposed brick and warm lighting, the new space offers an inviting and roomy bar and more room for diners.

One thing hasn’t changed, however. The elevated, Southern-inspired fare that McEwen’s patrons expect remains intact. Lunch faves include the ever-popular Jungle of Greens salad with a tasty sesame ginger dressing, sandwiches such as The Cuban, Grilled Atlantic Salmon with a miso and pecan glaze, and a delicious daily special. Dinner guests can start their evening with BBQ Duck Confit Enchiladas or Saffron Lobster Risotto. Entrées run a delightful gamut from Pan Seared Chilean Sea Bass to Creole Spice Pork Ossobuco to the Trust Me Vegetarian Plate. Meals are perfectly complemented by a carefully curated wine, beer, and cocktail list.

RELATED: McEwen’s Creole-Spiced Braised Pork Osso Buco

Mahi mahi from McEwen's, a new Memphis restaurant

Mahi mahi with a lemon caper and tomato cream sauce served with sour cream and onion, mashed potatoes, and sautéed vegetables. Are you drooling yet? Image: McEwen’s

Pan-seared chicken breast with mushroom marsala from McEwen's

This pan-seared chicken breast with mushroom marsala is a classic done right. Image: McEwen’s

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Published December 2021
Written by Gaye Swan

What better way to keep warm on a chilly winter’s day than to visit a fun new eatery? We are delighted to bring you a sample of what’s new in Memphis for food lovers, including authentically delicious West African fare, melt-in-your-mouth brisket, Southern fried chicken, yummy soul food, and a little something sweet. You will not want to miss these five fabulous new Memphis restaurants!

5 New Memphis Restaurants to Check Out (Updated December 2021)

Abner’s

1350 Concourse Avenue, Suite 137, Memphis, TN 38104 • (901) 425-2597
Hours: Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Following the successful September opening of Abner’s in East Memphis, the popular Oxford-based restaurant welcomed fried chicken lovers to Crosstown Concourse. Co-owner Kirk Cotham purchased the saucy chicken eatery from the original Abner himself, and they now operate in six locations. “Abner’s offers good, fresh, made-in-house meals that won’t break your budget,” he tells us. “It is a perfect fit for the Crosstown community.” The tenders live up to their name – juicy and tender, with various savory sauces. Wings and nuggets are also on offer, as well as wraps, sandwiches, and salads. Simple sides such as fries, homemade chips, and baby carrots round out your meal. If you are looking for something a little different, the crowd-pleasing Tender Tacos are a tasty choice.

Fried chicken and French fries from Abner's, a new Memphis restaurant

Enjoy an indulgent basket of tenders and fries at Abner’s, now open at Crosstown Concourse. Image: NLA Projects

RELATED: 12 of Memphis’ Most Epic Breakfast Sandwiches

Wolf River Brisket

1350 Concourse Avenue, Suite 165, Memphis, TN 38104 • (901) 791-4389
Hours: Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

In addition to Abner’s, Kirk Cotham and his partner Chad Foreman also own Wolf River Brisket and were quick to jump on an open space in Crosstown Concourse, expanding the line of eateries to three. “Memphis is a great barbeque town, with fantastic restaurants,” Kirk says. “We aren’t competing with that; we are complementing and enhancing the scene.” While Wolf River Brisket is justly known for mouthwatering brisket, the restaurant offers other tempting choices that feature burnt ends, smoked salmon, and smoked sausage. Sides include Southern favorites with a twist, including baked cheese grits, purple hull pea succotash, and spicy garlic green beans. Wolf River Brisket has a full bar with signature beverages like the Smoked Salt Margarita; as the name implies, the cocktail is half-rimmed with hickory-smoked salt. Yum!

Brisket and sides from Wolf River Brisket, a new Memphis restaurant

Enjoy quintessential Southern fare at Wolf River Brisket. Image: NLA Projects

Bala’s Bistro

4571 Elvis Presley Blvd., Memphis, TN 38116 • (901) 509-3024
Hours: Monday, 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.; Tuesday through Thursday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

West African cuisine is actually quite similar to Southern cuisine, Chef Bala Tounkara says. “We use a lot of okra, beef, chicken, and rice. One of our goals is to educate people on new and different types of food. It’s not always West African; we have dishes from all over the continent.” His newly opened Whitehaven location of Bala’s Bistro brings the flavor to must-try dishes such as seafood okra stew, lamb saka saka, Maafe (a creamy peanut butter soup), and peppered goat curry. Vegan options abound, too, with choices ranging from kimchi wraps to vegan saka saka and okra stew.

Formerly in a smaller location, Bala’s Bistro now has room for parties, a heated patio, and a dedicated parking lot. Brightly decorated and cheerful, the restaurant aims to be a fun spot for authentic African entertainment and talent and a hotspot for delightfully unique food.

Food spread from Bala's Bistro, a new Memphis restaurant

Enjoy traditional African dishes at Bala’s Bistro‘s new Whitehaven location. Image: Bala’s Bistro

Makeda’s Cookies

2370 Airways Boulevard, Memphis, TN 38114 • (901) 745-2667
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

After weathering the tragic death of Memphis rapper Young Dolf at their Airways location, Makeda’s Cookies has something wonderful to celebrate. The beloved local institution known for its delicious old-fashioned butter cookies opened a new bakery and retail shop downtown. Stop in the spacious new store for sweet treats including chocolate chip, Lemon Goodness, macadamia nut, oatmeal, pecan cookies, and award-winning banana pudding and pies made with a butter cookie crust. Can’t get downtown? The family-owned and -run bakery sells its most famous treat in more than 50 grocery stores.

Chocolate chip cookies from Makeda's Cookies, a new Memphis restaurant

You can’t beat a Makeda’s Cookies sweet treat! Image: Facebook

RELATED: Memphis Holiday Pop-Ups to Check Out This Season

Taste a Piece of Peace

4465 Poplar Avenue, Memphis, TN 38117 • (901) 590-2484
Hours: Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 6 p.m.

Taste a Piece of Peace recently opened in the Oak Court Mall – but don’t expect fast food at this Southern-style soul food counter. Cooked hot and fresh to order, the menu includes standout favorites like fried catfish, turkey patties with gravy, and chicken and waffles. Of course, every good Southerner knows a meal isn’t complete without the sides, and owner Jennifer Richardson has you covered. You’ll find mac-n-cheese, mashed potatoes, green beans, candied yams, and more to meet your taste buds’ needs. Add a warm roll or cornbread, and finish with Nana’s pudding. This is comfort food done just right!

Catfish and sides from Taste A Piece of Peace, a new Memphis restaurant

Comfort food awaits at the newly opened Taste a Piece of Peace. Image: Instagram

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Published November 2021
Written by Gaye Swan

The ever-expanding restaurant scene in Memphis continues to bring us fresh and delicious menus every month. Check out these three new and one as-good-as-new Bluff City eateries, and we think you’ll agree that Memphis is a premier destination for foodies everywhere!

4 New Memphis Restaurants To Check Out (Updated November 2021)

Erling Jensen Small Bites

5069 Sanderlin Avenue, Memphis, TN 38117 • (901) 58-SWING
Hours: Daily, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Chef Erling Jensen brings his gold-standard gourmet fare to a laid-back, fun environment. Located in the DoubleTree by Hilton in East Memphis, Erling Jensen Small Bites featuring TopGolf Swing Suite combines Chef Erling’s signature fine-dining dishes with the immersive social experience of golf and other games. The menu offers a selection of classic entrees from award-winning Erling Jensen The Restaurant with a more casual presentation designed to be shareable. “Chef Erling has a stellar reputation in Memphis as a gourmet chef with impeccable standards,” says Pace Cooper, CEO of Cooper Hotels, the owner of the Memphis DoubleTree property as well as many others. “We knew that reputation would allow visitors to trust the food in our new concept.” His confidence was not misplaced – weekends are fully booked and they are excited to see repeat customers.

Some of the most popular items on the small bites menu are the flatbreads, sliders, and braised beef short rib bites. Roasted rack of lamb and cast-iron roasted chicken are must-haves if you want a larger meal. Round out your evening with one of the craft cocktails and save room for a decadent dessert.

Entrance to Erling Jensen Small Bites with TopGolf Swing Suite, a new Memphis restaurant

Erling Jensen Small Bites offers amazing food with a backdrop of fun at TopGolf Swing Suite. Image: Erling Jensen Small Bites with TopGolf Swing Suite

Flatbread from Erling Jensen Small Bites

The Wild Mushroom Flatbread combines earthy mushrooms with Fontina cheese, fresh basil and garlic pesto, and a drizzle of white truffle oil. Image: Erling Jensen Small Bites with TopGolf Swing Suite

TopGolf Swing Suite

TopGolf Swing Suite allows you to experience 100 of the best golf courses in the nation. Golf not your thing? You can try hockey, baseball, basketball, football – there’s even Zombie Dodgeball! Image: Erling Jensen Small Bites with TopGolf Swing Suite

RELATED: 5 Memphis Bars with Games

Kutie Pies Bakery Café

1036 E. Goodman Road, Southaven, MS 38671 • (901) 480-9511
Hours: Tuesday through Friday, 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

You can find it all at Kutie Pies Bakery Café. Owner Karen Todd, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, brings delicious comfort food, scrumptious desserts, and a very warm welcome to her customers. Named after Karen’s own two “kutie pies” (her daughters), the awesome new eatery has the distinction of being the first black-owned bakery in Southaven. Made-in-house bakery selections include cupcakes, cookies, pies, cobblers, cakes, and more. Be sure to try the strawberry cake, already a big local favorite. The café menu is chock-full of Southern goodness, including chicken and waffles and shrimp and grits. In addition to what you’ll find ready and waiting, Kutie Pies offers full-service catering, private rentals, and custom orders.

Strawberry cake from Kutie Pies, a new Memphis restaurant

The strawberry cake from Kutie Pies is a local favorite. We can see why! Image: Kristopher Massey

Reese's cookies from Kutie Pies in Memphis, TN

Grab some Reese’s cookies to take home. Image: Kristopher Massey

Shrimp and grits from Kutie Pies, a new Memphis restaurant

You can also get Southern favorites like shrimp and grits. Image: Kristopher Massey

Pantá

2146 Monroe Avenue, Memphis, TN 38104 • (901) 417-7491
Hours: Thursday through Saturday, 6 p.m. to midnight; Sunday, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Memphians are buzzing about the latest offering from Chef Kelly English. Pantá is in the building that housed Chef Kelly’s flagship Restaurant Iris, now undergoing a highly anticipated relocation to East Memphis. Focused on the bold, vibrant flavors of Spain, Pantá features a delightful menu of Catalan cuisine in a very colorful and welcoming casual atmosphere. Perfect for sharing, the selection of small plates allows you to sample plenty of authentic Catalan flavor. The beverage menu boasts a list of Spanish-only wines, eclectic specialty cocktails, and gin and tonics that are inspired by the region. You’ll definitely want to end the meal with one of the mouthwatering desserts.

Interior of Pantá, a new Memphis restaurant

The cozy atmosphere at Pantá is equally as vibrant. Image: Caleb Sigler of Iris Restaurant Group

Bocadillo de Plato a les Landes from Pantá in Memphis, TN

Bocadillo de Plato a les Landes is a belly-warming meal idea. Image: Caleb Sigler of Iris Restaurant Group

Fiona cocktail from Pantá, a new Memphis restaurant

The “Fiona” is just one of several craft cocktails. Image: Caleb Sigler of Iris Restaurant Group

RELATED: Brownies, Blondies & Bars to Bake This Season

Hog and Hominy

707 W. Brookhaven Circle, Memphis, TN 38117 • (901) 779-6096
Hours: Tuesday through Thursday, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday through Saturday, 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.; Happy hour, Tuesday through Saturday, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Although this is technically a re-opening, Memphians are so excited about the return of this local favorite that we had to give it a mention. The original Hog and Hominy was shuttered by a late-night fire almost two years ago, and the new space is just that – brand new. With floor-to-ceiling windows, vaulted ceilings, and elegant accents, the larger restaurant offers a warm yet sophisticated welcome to customers in search of the eatery’s signature Italian cooking and Southern roots. The menu is a combination of tried-and-true selections and new items sure to become crowdpleasers. Wood-fired pizzas are among the must-try entrees, including Classic H&H options as well as seasonal offerings. Be sure to check out the hip and fun new cocktail menu, too!

Happy dining, Memphis!

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