This past weekend was my birthday. No, I do not mean that one of the days of the weekend was my birthday. I mean that I spent three whole days celebrating my March 26th birthday. What does a Memphis Foodie do to celebrate turning another year older? Yep, she eats as much as she possibly can. That’s what I did. My first food event of the weekend was South of Beale, which is located in South Main Arts District Downtown. My friend Erin and I headed down there for the South Main Trolley Tour that night, so we were already in the area. I also had heard nothing but great reviews about the places, so I thought this would be the right time to try it out. Also, when there mission is featured on the front page of their website, you know you will be taken care of when you dine in:
Our mission at South of Beale is to give our patrons a warm, welcoming atmosphere accompanied with personable and attentive service that highlights our extreme care for the food and drinks we serve. Our number one priority is giving our guests a memorable experience to come back to time and time again.
When Erin and I got there, the place was absolutely packed. Then again, it was 9pm on a Friday night. They don’t have a hostess, but the bartender was super nice and helpful when we were trying to locate a table. We eventually found ourselves a cozy little two top (no stalking needed) to settle down in. The drink board was staring us in the eye as we sat down, like it knew what we wanted. Five dollar delicious pints and cheap whip cream vodka shots. How does the board KNOW that’s my favorite and it’s my birthday weekend? Easy choice right off the bat. Though the place was crammed, the service was still quick. Our server had our drinks to us in no time. Now, if you have never gone out to eat with Erin and me, you don’t know what an event this can be. We can never make a decision on what to order, and we don’t want want to miss out on anything really good. Therefore, we tend to order way more food then we could ever consume. As an appetizer, we got the S.O.B. Bar Pie, which is a House Made Mozzarella, Roasted Tomatoes, and Basil flatbread, and the Fried Green Tomatoes. For our dinner, we ordered the Shrimp and Grits and Seared Scallops with sides of Bacon Wrapped Asparagus and Spinach and Potato Gratin. The S.O.B. Bar pie was delicious, and you could definitely tell it was fresh. The Fried Green Tomatoes did puzzle us, however. They really tasted like green peppers, but maybe it was just the sauce or seasoning. Either way, they were still good. The Shrimp and Grits were good as well. The shrimp was spicy, but had a lot of wonderful flavors to it. The grits were a good compliment, but pretty bland on their on. Erin and I kept talking about how great they would be if they were cheese grits, but maybe that’s the Southern coming out in us. We were really amazed by the scallops, which were our favorite by far. They were perfectly cooked, seasoned, etc. We ate ALL of them. For the sides, they were both delicious as well. I am in love with spinach, so I enjoy anything cooked with it, and how can anything be bad with bacon?
Overall, we were impressed by South of Beale. A couple of items were hit or miss, but everything else was amazing. The service was fantastic, drinks cold as ice, and food that satisfied our bellies. Elegant food and a lively atmosphere made this place worth coming back soon.
South of Beale is officially Memphis’ First Gastropub, which they define as ”a pub serving great ale & wine along with chef-driven food.” It is also another Project Greenfork Certified restaurant, and it’s always good to support those that give back to the community.
On top of this, they were recently voted the “Best New Bar” and “Best New Restaurant”. If that does not give it some credibility, I do not know what does.
Check them out before the end of the Grizzlies season too, because they offer discounts to those who attended the game! Get 20% off your food after the game if you show your server your tickets!
If I haven’t sold you yet, you might want to check out their drink specials. Happy Hour every week is $3.00 drafts, $4.00 wells, and $4.00 select wines. Pint Nights are also Sunday and Wednesday, where you can get $3.00 brews as well. That’s $3.00 for a delicious microbrew, including your own local Ghost River! If none of that tickles your fancy, they have $3.00 mimosas and bloody marys for Sunday brunch as well!