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This is the Peabody Hotel's second tier restaurant, after Chez Philippe. The setting is still elegant, and the food sophisticated—this is a place to linger over a meal with the well-dressed crowd. Service here is not as formal as at Chez Philippe, and sometimes has a very Southern, down-home flavor.The food is contemporary, with fusion elements. Local roots show in dishes such as Tennessee Persimmon Wood Smoked Chicken. Lunch offers salads and pasta dishes, and the homemade potato chips with blue-cheese dip draws locals back again and again. Desserts are irresistible. Try the Chocolate-Apricot Torte or the Sundried Cherry and Apricot Bread Pudding.
The atmosphere at this diner-style café is so authentic that the place was used virtually unchanged in "The Firm", the Tom Cruise movie about a Memphis law firm. Bill Clinton is also fond of the Blues City Cafe. The décor is intentionally weathered, with corrugated iron and glass blocks. Diner-style seating offers a great view of the crowds on Beale. The best bet on the menu is that Memphis staple—barbeque. You can watch big slabs of ribs being turned on the grill while you drink a cold beer. The prices are slightly elevated because of the restaurant's historic location, but you can still eat for a reasonable price.
A favorite on the Memphis dining scene, this local joint is the place to go for traditional Italian fare, such as spaghetti and meatballs, pizza and lasagna. The place is so authentic that you half expect a ninety-year-old Italian grandma to come out of the kitchen and give you a big kiss on the cheek. You can also order for steaks and seafood. A private dining room is available for bookings and carryout is also available. Reservations are recommended on the weekends.
The food here tends to have a Mediterranean base, with risottos, pastas and salmon appearing in many variations, but infused with delicious Asian touchees. The Salmon with Wasabi Glaze and Tomato Basil Risotto is a perfect example. Local favorites are incorporated, too, as in the grilled shrimp with grits. Feta cheese, tapenade sauce, pancetta and gazpacho offer southern European elements, while Memphis' proximity to New Orleans is recognized in the Barbecued Catfish with Remoulade Sauce. Buttermilk pie with brown sugar sauce is among the best of the lush desserts. Occupying a small space, this restaurant is cozy with dark wood paneling. The atmosphere is casual and relaxing.