The Pinch District, known as Memphis’ first neighborhood, began as a melting pot, its population made up primarily of Irish immigrants escaping the potato famine of Ireland in the mid-1800s. The area got its name because of the appearance of a “pinched gut” on the hungry residents who lived there. In addition to being the first Memphis neighborhood, it was also the city’s first commercial district.
Today, the Pinch District is a vibrant neighborhood, packed with plenty to see and do – here’s a guide to some of our favorites, updated in January 2022!
WHERE TO EAT
The Lookout at Bass Pro Outdoor World
1 Bass Pro Dr, Memphis, TN 38105 • (901) 620-4630
Uncle Buck’s Fishbowl and Grill
1 Bass Pro Dr, Memphis, TN 38105 • (901) 291-8000
Located inside Cypress Lodge, aka the Bass Pro Shop Pyramid, this is undoubtedly a one-of-a-kind dining experience. Uncle Buck’s Fishbowl and Grill will have you feeling like you’re swimming in the deep, blue sea. Not only is the food delicious, but their cocktails will blow you out of the water!
346 N. Main St, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 543-8646
With a menu that ranges from sandwiches and burgers to gumbo to steak, Westy’s has something on the menu for just about everyone, and they’ve been around for decades, so the menu is tried and true. Westy’s also offers “blue plate specials,” serving up a taste of country fare. Their best seller? Catfish nuggets.
317 N Main St, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 523-0200
Chicken. And. Waffles. Need we say more? Open for breakfast, lunch, and Saturday brunch, Alcenia’s serves up some solid soul food. From chicken and catfish to veggies, beans, and homemade desserts, Alcenia’s is a must for comfort food. *UPDATE: As of January 27, 2022, Alcenia’s is temporarily closed for renovations. Be sure to check their website for updates!
Ferraro’s Pizzeria and Pub
111 Jackson Ave, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 522-2033
Offering homemade pizza with fresh ingredients, Ferraro’s Pizzeria and Pub feels authentically Italian. Not in the mood for pizza? Give their stromboli a try — it’s made fresh every morning. *UPDATE: As of January 27, 2022, Ferraro’s is temporarily closed for renovations. Keep an eye on their website for updates!
ACCOMMODATIONS & EVENT SPACES
Big Cypress Lodge
1 Bass Pro Dr, Memphis, TN 38105 • (901) 620-4600
There’s nothing quite like staying inside the pyramid at Big Cypress Lodge — especially one that offers tons of activities, a Bass Pro Shop, a hotel, spa, and two restaurants. The Big Cypress Lodge is the only hotel of its kind in Memphis. It combines the great outdoors with an elegant twist that features fireplaces, screened-in porches, and handcrafted furniture. If you’re hosting a private gathering, stay in the Governor’s Suite, which has a full kitchen, wrap-around balcony, and breathtaking view. Worth noting, Big Cypress Lodge also offers meeting spaces.
330 N Main St, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 522-1144
Constructed in 1876, Balinese Ballroom is filled with character and can adapt to any type of celebration. Whether your event aesthetic is chic, rustic, or modern, this is the Pinch District’s go-to. Host a wedding, reunion, work function, anniversary, or birthday party — they offer three different spaces to suit a variety of party sizes and styles.
WHERE TO DRINK
358 N Main St, Memphis, TN 38103 • (901) 860-4215
Comeback Coffee first started as a way to give back to Memphis. Their motto, “Stay awhile,” is a genuine invitation. Grab a cup of coffee, a pastry, and settle in for anything from conversation with friends to catching up on work, to diving into a good book.
Pyramid Wine & Spirits
120 A.W. Willis Ave, Memphis, TN 38105 • (901) 578-2773
In business for over a decade, the Pyramid Wine & Spirits vision is to bring you the best wine and spirits at an affordable cost. They also offer a Growling Station, where you can taste and try some of Memphis’ craft and local beers. Whatever your poison, they’ve got you covered.
The African Palace
581 N. 3rd St, Memphis, TN 38105 • 901-524-0800
The African Palace offers a wide variety of African imports including clothing, personal care products, spiritual supplies, prints, jewelry, and more. They also have a cafe and rental venue!
Slave Haven Underground Railroad Museum
826 N. Second St., Memphis, TN 38107 • (901) 527-3427
Slave Haven Underground Railroad Museum features a secret cellar and trap doors that offered refuge to runaway slaves. The tour provides information on the horrors of the slave trade and the workings of the Underground Railroad.
Big Cypress Spa
1 Bass Pro Dr, Memphis, TN 38105 • (901) 620-4600
Enjoy a single treatment or a full luxury spa day with all the bells and whistles at Big Cypress Spa. They offer traditional services like manicures, pedicures, body treatments, and facials, plus a selection of skincare products for purchase.
Epiphany Salon and Gallery
726 North Pkwy, Memphis, TN 38105 • (901) 406-3026
Epiphany Salon and Gallery has one goal: to make you look and feel your best. What’s not to love about that? From the time you arrive, you’ll be made to feel comfortable and pampered, and you’ll leave with shiny, silky-smooth locks.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
62 Danny Thomas Pl, Memphis, TN 38105 • (901) 595-3300
There’s a special place in the heart of each Memphian when it comes to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Host to various fundraisers throughout the year, including the famous St. Jude Marathon, we are grateful this world-renowned healthcare facility is right here in our backyard. Founded by Danny Thomas, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is a hospital unlike any other. They’re dedicated to curing childhood cancer, and they refuse to turn any child away. While you’re taking a tour or driving through the campus, stop by the St. Jude Gift Shop!
Get out and explore this historic neighborhood that means so much to Memphis!
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