Another great weekend trip is only 3 hours to our west: Memphis! There are plenty of obvious activities to do, like check out Beale Street, go to the Civil Rights Museum, or head to a Memphis Grizzlies game. But if you want to experience what locals experience, here are some tips:
This Vietnamese restaurant is a local hotspot; ask any local about the best Asian food nearby, and the majority of people will point you here. Their claim to fame: Lemongrass Tofu. Even if you are not a devout tofu worshipper as I am, you can still give it a shot. It is the most incredible flavor I’ve ever experienced. Even non-vegetarians who (think that they) don’t like tofu come here just to taste it. I crave this dish quite often, but I have yet to perfect it in my own kitchen. https://www.facebook.com/Pho-Binh-104336099611112/
This is a favorite of my best friend who lives in Memphis, and I can definitely see why! With many different menu offerings, its hard to nail down exactly what cuisine this is. They have some Spanish-inspired dishes and a short tapas menu, burgers and sandwiches, as well as guacamole and queso. A little bit of everything, and it’s all spectacular. They also have a $10 sangria flight, which I highly recommend. There’s some cute little boutiques next door, too! The whole area is very similar to Nashville’s Hillsboro Village. https://eatbabalu.com/menus
I have to include one vegan recommendation, so here you go: Imagine Vegan Café. With an entire menu just full of vegan options, they’ve got a little something for everyone. This is more of your casual, junk food vegan menu. Fried mozzarella and potato skins are offered as appetizers, with lots of “Chicken” as entrees—the Chicken Bacon Melt is great. The atmosphere is rustic and casual, with some cool animal paintings on the walls. The wait tends to be on the longer side, but my little vegan heart is perfectly fine with that. If you’re looking for a quick(er) bite, go for the Tofu at Pho Binh. https://www.imaginevegancafe.com/
While I did not do this on my most recent trip to Memphis, this is one of my favorite memories from visiting the area. Historical Haunts puts on a great tour, and they have several to choose from. Bus tours, walking tours, even a haunted pub crawl; if you have any interest in the supernatural or even in local history, then this is a great activity for you! You’ll stop by many local businesses with a sinister past and get to hear ghost stories both modern and antiquated from the area. Check out their schedule here: https://www.historicalhauntsmemphis.com/.
This bar/restaurant/community space has tons of different events! From Karaoke, to Grizz watch parties, to a community market, this is a must stop. Check out their Facebook to see what they’re offering while you’re in town. The Memphis Modern Market happens a couple Saturdays a month and features vendors from throughout the city. Art, handpoured candles, jewelry, and some vintage clothing retailers all set up booths so you can shop to your heart’s content. http://www.loflinyard.com/