Where-oh-where to start when starting a Memphis foodie blog? Well, I thought since Memphis is THE home of BBQ, I had to start by trying out a new BBQ place. Between the World Championship BBQ Cooking Contest in May and all of the local eateries, tourists flock to Memphis to try our barbecue. It’s what we are known and loved for.
As a native Memphian, I have tried many BBQ spots and have my favorites. I go certain places for ribs, certain places for a pulled pork sandwich, and certain places for BBQ nachos. I have my typical recommendations for family, friends, and tourists. I know Memphis BBQ.
However, there is one spot that I have heard a lot about, but I have never tried. That is the Bar-B-Q Shop on Madison Avenue in Midtown. It is apparently a Memphis staple that I have overlooked in my years. So this is where I went for lunch today.
As you walk up to the restaurant, it looks like a typical hole-in-the-wall joint. Nothing fancy. The inside is very bare-bones as well. They obviously focus more on the food than the atmosphere.
As I walk in, the sign says “Please see hostess to be seated”, so I stand and wait for someone to greet me. After about 30 seconds, the lady who has been standiing against the wall and staring at me says, “So you want to sit down and eat?” and I respond yes. She then says, “Well I’m glad I asked because you would have been standing there forever if you didn’t speak up.”
Excuse me? It’s my job to yell at someone to ask for them to help me, when the sign suggests otherwise? I am a very laid-back person in these situations, but it put me a little off from the beginning. She was a bit rude. This aside, she sat me at a table, and I was quickly greeted by Laurie, my server. She was really sweet and helpful. (Thanks for everything Laurie!)
I start with some BBQ nachos, as they are one of my favorite barbecue dishes. My friend Andrea agreed! When they arrived to the table, my eyes got huge! These were not your typical appetizer order of nachos, but instead they were a meal for two! However, they looked delicious, so we both dug in. Our eyes did not fool us, they were delicious! Round tortilla chips topped with pulled pork, nacho cheese, BBQ sauce, and jalapeños…yum!
After the nachos, we got our main dishes. Andrea got a pulled pork sandwich, and I got the pulled pork salad. Once again, my eyes widened as I noticed how incredibly large their portions are. Andrea raved about her sandwich,and my salad did not disappoint either! I would have like a bit more lettuce, though. To me, it seemed more like a GIANT bowl of BBQ with some other stuff mixed in as a opposed to a salad with BBQ. Yet, how can I complain that they gave me too much BBQ on a salad at a BBQ joint? I skipped side dishes, because I have heard mixed reviews about them. Also, I obviously already had enough food in front of me.
After we were done, I ended up needed 2 To-Go boxes: one for the rest of the nachos and one for my salad. There was so much food, I couldn’t even fathom trying to eat it all.
Here is Andrea, also a Bar-B-Q Shop first timer, talking about her experience.
Overall, the place was great in my opinion. I can see why so many people rave about it. Though the hostess was a bit rude, our server Laurie was wonderful! She even put up with us asking questions and taking pictures for a class project (#j7200 on Twitter). What a good sport. The food portions were huge, but everything was great. I still have my other favorite BBQ places in town, but I will definitely be back to The Bar-B-Q shop again.
Check out the website of the “Home of the Dancing Pigs” for more information.
They are also on Facebook.