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By Barbara Ardis The odd thing about the food in Memphis. There is no Pig and no Hardees. A few golden gates or burger franchises, but a terrific amount of special restaurants and special names. We eat brunch every Sunday after church and have a lot of fun-seeking new venues. A very special one was called “Hog and Hominy”. It looked as if it was inside a regular house and had two sides open to the kitchens. In the kitchen very near our table was a chef throwing pizza dough while another assistant was pulling fresh fired pizza from a small individual oven. We enjoyed our breakfast with an ice bucket full of champagne bottles next to our table and the group was having a quiet good time. Several times we have eaten at the cheese cake factory and continue to walk very fast as we leave, past the showcases filled with cakes and pies and cookies. One warm mid-afternoon after shopping on Saturday, we went to the Bahama Breeze and sat on the patio sipping cool drinks. Very near our house is the Oyster House which serves raw oysters. My friends know that is my favorite start to any meal, any day. Probably one of our favorites is the West Street Diner, which reminds me of the old White’s Diner that sat in Manning when I first moved here in the late 1950’s. It sat about where Hardees is now, on Sunset Drive. Here in Memphis, it is very crowded on Sundays, but they serve the best cheese grits to be found anywhere. It looks just like a no frills diner. During the 4thof July long holiday, we drove over to Oxford, Ms, home of ole Miss. It is about 1-1/2 hour drive from Memphis and is known for a very large bookstore that we wanted to visit. But the highlight of the trip was an accidental visit to the Old Venice Pizza Co. We didn’t want pizza, but they were the only place open on the square. To our surprise, the menu included a lot more than pizza. The appetizers included crawfish rolls stuffed with crawfish, shrimp and smoked gouda with spicy remoulade sauce. My daughter and I both ordered the crab and crawfish chowder along with the Boudreaux sandwich stuffed with crawfish tails and served on oven toasted Gambino French bread. Perhaps one of the simplest restaurants we visit in Pei Wei, and Asian kitchen. My daughter calls it the noodle place. I am learning to eat a little sushi, but this menu also has shareables and small plates. The chicken salad rolls are wrapped in hydroponic lettuce and Banh Trang rice paper. They have 3 steps to build a bowl: 1. Choose a recipe..including Korean and Mongolian 2. Choose a protein ..from tofu to shrimp and 3. Choose greens or grains. Sounds simple, but there are so many good choices that it takes a while to pick.

This past Sunday we visited the Brickyard. Doesn’t sound much like a restaurant, but they have a brunch buffet that includes everything from prime rib to scrambled eggs. It is too much food.

My daughter says my cooking habits and visiting restaurants have made her gain weight. She suggests I visit shops while she walks a mile on the 2ndfloor of the mall several nights a week. Doesn’t she know this little old lady knows where to find the food courts.


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