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National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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Gibson Guitar Factory in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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One of the Mississippi River bridges in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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Enjoying the view at a Mississippi River cruise in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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Cable car in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

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Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee

Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee: From Barbecue to Beale Street

By: Val Kahl

9 of 9
  • States:
    Tennessee

Memphis is a real must-see destination for lovers of Elvis, music history and barbecue.

The largest city in Tennessee, Memphis is the birthplace of some of the biggest artists in blues and rock music. The city continues to seduce travelers with its culinary specialties and, of course, its rhythm!

Memphis’ Culinary Scene: Barbecue and Beyond

New chefs are rising in Memphis with sophisticated nouvelle cuisine. Barbecue is the star of the town, and there is no choice but to try them all out. 

One of the most famous barbecue restaurants in all of Memphis, which hosted Princes Harry and William as recent guests, is Charlie Vergo’s Rendezvous Ribs. You’ll have to go down a dark alley to enjoy some of the best dry-rubbed ribs you’ll ever taste. Start out at the bar upstairs and then enjoy a meal in the dining room. 

My insider´s tip is Restaurant Iris, led by multi-award-winning chef Kelly English, who creates his own twist on Southern food. I was treated to their best specialties and a fantastic wine list in a cosy villa. Not just an experience, but a real journey – a warm atmosphere in a unique setting.

If it’s a casual local favourite you’re looking for, be sure to try Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken. The original restaurant is in Mason, outside of Memphis, but there are locations in the big city; this restaurant has become locally famous in its 60 years in business. There is always a line for the delicious fried chicken. I loved that the menu didn’t complicate things, either. Just fried chicken and a few side dishes.

Beale Street: Heart of Evening Activities

At the end of the day, Beale Street is where the action begins. It is a mythical street where you’ll hear almost every kind of music you can imagine: blues, rock, soul, even side-street performers that haven’t hit the big time (yet). Everywhere you go, you’ll hear the sounds and the soul of what has made Memphis so famous.

Beale Street is also a central place for shops, barbecue restaurants, neon lights and the famous street acrobats known as the Beale Street Flippers. The street is blocked off in the evening to vehicle traffic, so it is a pedestrian-friendly experience. I especially enjoyed BB King’s for a fun ambiance and drinks, but you’ll always find a great time anywhere on this famous strip in Memphis. Take a seat on one of the terrace rooftops, watch the diverse and artistic crowd and savour the scene.

To conclude my trip, I embarked on a riverboat tour of the Mississippi River. Listening to the guide’s stories of the legendary waterway, I let myself travel back in time and was inspired by the city landscape, thinking about my next visit to Memphis.

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