Our Favorite Bars
The bartender starts making your drink as you walk through the door. All your buds are there. The game is on. You can order dinner off the menu, meaning no dirty mess to clean up later. And when you're depressed, there's always a nice bartender around to play shrink while tears fall into your beer. It's your favorite bar.
Of course, your favorite bar won't always have the best of everything. You may have one spot for a perfectly spiced Bloody Mary, another for an authentic-tasting margarita, and yet another for a rockin' show by a local indie band. Fortunately for you, our staff does plenty of drinkin' and rockin' out. Here's a list of our favorites. >>>
OUR FAVORITE WINE BARS
Bari — Nothing goes better with fine wine than fancy, imported cheese, and Bari has plenty of both. Serving over 30 Italian wines from almost every region and 40 different varieties of cheese, Bari offers Wine Flights and Cheese Trios to make pairing easier on the customer.
22 S. Cooper (722-2244)
Blue Fish — Not only does this Cooper-Young restaurant serve the freshest seafood in town, they also boast an impressive wine collection. Head straight for the blue mod-deco bar and order a glass of Lolanis Estate Chardonnay, from an organic wine company that uses ladybugs (instead of chemicals) to weed out pests.
135 S. Main (725-0230)
Circa — Any place with a Wall of Wine has "great wine bar" written all over it. Inside this upscale downtown eatery, walls of wine racks double as partitions separating tables. Circa, the latest restaurant conception by John Bragg, boasts over 100 wine selections, over 40 of which are offered by the glass and in two-ounce "tasting flights."
119 S. Main, Suite 100 (522-1488)
Le Chardonnay — This romantic Midtown wine bar has always been known for its massive selection of reds, whites, and bubblies. But now that the dimly lit bistro has moved across the street, it's like a brand-new wine bar with the same charming French café vibe. And they still serve that great wood-fired pizza.
2105 Madison (725-1375)
The Inn at Hunt-Phelan — Wine tastes better when sipped in an antebellum mansion. It makes you feel all refined and Victorian-like. The Inn at Hunt-Phelan, a Memphis landmark dating back to 1824, offers a huge wine selection paired with Chef Stephen Hassinger's authentic Creole-style cuisine.
533 Beale (525-8225)
OUR FAVORITE MARTINI BARS
Automatic Slim's Tonga Club — Remember when you were a kid and you ate the whole box of Cracker Jacks to get to that cheap prize at the bottom? Or maybe you just dumped the box's contents on the kitchen table. Either way, grownups can still enjoy the "prize at the bottom" thing at Automatic Slim's where vodka-soaked fruit awaits you at the bottom of your martini. Just don't dump out the drink to get there.
83 S. Second (525-7948)
Grove Grill — Mixing the perfect martini is an art, and, thankfully, the folks at the Grove Grill have gotten it down pat (or would that be a shake?). Not only does this East Memphis bar offer amazing happy martini specials, but it's an ideal place for after-work networking and elbow-rubbing.
4550 Poplar (818-9951)
Majestic Grille — Who says a martini has to have three olives? At downtown's Majestic Grille, the herbal 'tinis are served with lavender sprigs and cucumber slices or basil leaves and muddled strawberries. Or if speed is more your speed, the Espresso Martini is sure to energize.
145 S. Main (522-8555)
Side Street Grill — Before the show at TheatreWorks, head next door to Side Street for one of the bar's many twists on the classic martini. Spice up the night with a Coonass Martini (prepared with Absolut Peppar) or woo your date with a Chocolate Covered Strawberry Martini (Godiva liqueur and strawberry vodka).
35 S. Florence (274-8955)
Spindini — For the ultimate martini, head to South Main's Spindini and order the Spindinitini, made with Grey Goose vodka, pomegranate juice, and champagne and garnished with fresh berries rolled in Grand Marnier and raw sugar.
383 S. Main (578-2767)
OUR FAVORITE SAKE BARS
Blue Fin — If plain hot sake is too bland for your tastes, head to Blue Fin for "Flavors of the Fin," a versatile drink allowing patrons to blend their sake with raspberry, watermelon, kiwi, grape, amaretto, and other fruity flavors. Of course, Blue Fin also carries a variety of traditional high-end sakes for the connoisseurs.
135 S. Main (528-1010)
Do — Sometimes you want a nice drink to start out the meal, but by dinner's end, you're looking to go easy on the pocketbook with a cheap beer. Well, Do has both. In typical Midtown fashion, this hip sushi bar serves Papst Blue Ribbon alongside fine sakes. Don't miss daily bento box meals.
964 S. Cooper (272-0830)
Sekisui — If you're craving sushi and sake, it doesn't really matter what part of town you're in. There's probably a Sekisui nearby. A Memphis institution, this regional chain owned by sushi master Jimmy Ishi boasts an impressive sake selection as well as non-traditional rolls, like the Philly Cheesesteak Roll (filet mignon and cheese rolled into an inside-out roll and then deep-fried).
Humphreys Center, 50 Humphreys Blvd. Ste. 14 (747-0001); 25 Belvedere (725-0005); Union at Second, Holiday Inn Select (523-0001); 4724 Poplar (between Perkins & Colonial) (767-7770); 1884 N. Germantown Parkway, Cordova (309-8800); 2130 W. Poplar, Ste. 107 in Collierville (854-0622); 1255 Goodman Rd. W. in Horn Lake, MS (662-536-4404)
Wasabi Sushi & Sake Bar — This casual sushi bar in Cordova Towne Center boasts a large menu of sakes, including a few fruity varieties. And they name their sushi rolls after movies. Try the Pirates of the Caribbean (crabstick and avocado wrapped in cucumber slices).
1134 N. Germantown Parkway (754-0567)
OUR FAVORITE MARGARITA BARS
Café Olé — Summertime means flip-flops, tank tops, and icy-cold frozen margaritas on the spacious patio at Café Olé. Order a pitcher of the tangy-sweet Strawberry Margarita (peppered with chunks of strawberries) and split it with friends. Or drink the whole pitcher by yourself if you dare.
2127 Young Ave. (274-5104)
Happy Mexican — You won't find any pre-made margarita mixes at this downtown cantina. Each tangy margarita is made with hand-squeezed limes and the freshest ingredients. Margarita snobs will delight in the Ultimate Margarita, made with top-shelf Chinaco tequila, Triple Sec, Couintreau, sour mix, and a splash of Coke.
385 S. Second (529-9991)
Molly's La Casita — Imagine if the bar from Cheers served handmade gourmet margaritas. That's a little like Molly's La Casita. This Midtown institution has Cheers' friendly neighborhood vibe, sweet and tangy blended margaritas, and a menu of tasty treats, like vegetable enchiladas and bacon-stuffed shrimp.
2006 Madison (726-1873)
Quetzal — Though this Edge District coffeehouse is known for its fresh-roasted, fair-trade java, Quetzal also boasts a mean Sangria Margarita. Served on the rocks with margarita mix, tequila, sweet sangria (made in-house), and soaked fruit chunks, it's the perfect alternative to hot coffee during those hot summer days.
668 Union (521-8388)
OUR FAVORITE MICROBREW BARS
Boscos Squared — A few bars around town boast fancy microbrews on tap, and that's nice. But at Boscos, they actually create their own brew in-house. Cask-conditioned microbrews are served up daily, and servers are happy to offer beer-pairing suggestions for menu items, like Boscos' famed wood-fired pizzas (even the crust is seasoned with their homebrew). Hang around long enough and you may even be asked to tap the daily cask.
2120 Madison (432-2222)
Flying Saucer — Though the Saucer doesn't make its own beer, it has the next best thing — more than 200 beers on tap. Ranging from pricey imported stouts and lagers to affordable pale ales and even domestics, the Saucer has something for everyone. True beer aficionados can sample their way through all the Saucer's offerings in the UFO Club and get their name emblazoned on one of the bar's famous saucers.
130 Peabody Place (532-8536); 1400 N. Germantown Parkway (755-5530)
Raffe's Beer Garden — For years, Midtown beer lovers have been stocking up on six-packs of microbrew at Raffe's Deli on Poplar. But since the deli's expanded to include this small attached "beer garden," those folks tend to stick around and down their brew on-site. While you're there, try Memphis-made Naked Lion Copper Flask and support the local economy.
3358 Poplar (454-9988).
Young Avenue Deli — Though the Saucer boasts the best beer selection downtown, the Deli has the market on Midtown. With nearly 40 high-quality beers on tap (like Young's Oatmeal Stout and Rogue Dead Guy Ale), plenty of pool tables, the best damn French fries around, an impressive sandwich selection, and the occasional indie rock show, the Deli pretty much rules.
2119 Young (278-0034)
OUR FAVORITE LIQUID BRUNCH SPOTS
Bayou Bar & Grill — Though they were bumped from the number-one spot in Memphis magazine's annual restaurant poll this year, the Bayou still makes the same delicious Cajun-style Bloody Mary that earned its former winning title. Sure to cure your hangover and provide your daily supply of lycopene (and vodka), the Bayou's Bloody Mary is somethin' special. Check out their sweet new location on Madison, next to the new Le Chardonnay.
2105 Madison (278-8626)
Blue Monkey — The day after a wild night on the town can be rough. Trust us, we know all about that. Now we're sure you're thinking, "How does the staff at Memphis magazine recover from all that hard drinking without breaking the bank?" Our secret — $2.50 Bloody Marys and $2 Mimosas every Sunday at the Blue Monkey. Go and see for yourself. With two locations (again), an inexpensive liquid brunch at the Monkey is more convenient than ever.
2012 Madison (272-2583); 513 S. Front (527-6665)
Memphis Mary's — Here in the barbecue capital, we know everything tastes better slathered with tangy sauce — pulled pork, pizza, spaghetti, tofu, and even Bloody Marys. This new bar, housed in the old Stop 345 location, specializes in barbecue-flavored Bloody Marys made with Memphian Tad Pierson's famous Memphis Mary mix. The bar is reserved for private parties on weekends though, so be sure to stop in Monday through Friday after 5 p.m.
345 Madison (507-2720)
Owen Brennan's — Chosen as the Best Bloody Mary in this year's Memphis magazine restaurant poll (sorry, Bayou), Owen Brennan's tomato-y cocktail is best enjoyed alongside a plate piled high with entrees from their phenomenal Sunday brunch buffet. Diners can choose items from six stations, including a seafood station serving up smoked salmon and oysters on the half-shell.
6150 Poplar (761-0990)
T.J. Mulligan's — Irish-style Bloody Marys? What else would you expect from an Irish pub? These spicy cocktails are served with a spiced rim, a pickle, and a side of beer. Have enough, and you may end up with a brand new hangover.
8071 Trinity (756-4480); 362 N. Main (523-1453); 6635 Quince (753-8056); 2821 N. Houston-Levee Rd. (377-9997)
OUR FAVORITE DIVE BARS
Alex's Tavern — The great thing about dive bars is you never have to worry about making an impression. You can let your hair down with good friends, cheap beer, good times, and a damn good jukebox. In fact, this Midtown neighborhood bar actually has two alternating jukeboxes to prevent jukebox hogs from playing an entire Journey album song by song. I mean, we love "Don't Stop Believin'" and all, but . . .
1445 Jackson (278-9086)
Earnestine & Hazel's — This South Main brothel-turned-bar offers a modest beer selection, mouth-watering Soul Burgers (to soothe those post-Trolley Tour hunger pangs), a large dance floor, and a creepy upstairs area that is surely haunted by the ghosts of its former ladies of the night.
84 G.E. Patterson (523-9754)
Lamplighter — If your grandma opened a dive bar, it'd be just like the Lamplighter. Decorated with 1970s-era knick-knacks, vintage picture books (don't miss the one with pictures of cute kittens), handmade placemats, and favorite bartender Miss Shirley's sweet smile, this Midtown dive is the best place to shoot cheap pool over an ice-cold Pabst Blue Ribbon and hand-cut French fries.
1702 Madison (726-1101)
Neil's — Neil's boasts lots of square footage for a dive bar, but there's no question that this Midtown institution qualifies as a no-frills neighborhood hangout. After all, any place that offers wine in three flavors — red, pink, or white — has unpretentious written all over it. Order a cheap glass and chill with the buds on Neil's huge outdoor deck.
1835 Madison (278-6345)
P&H Café — Many a starving artist has found their muse over an ice-cold pitcher at the P&H Café. And at least one artist, filmmaker Craig Brewer, shed his "starving" status when he penned his breakthrough film, The Poor & Hungry, inside these hallowed walls. Others, like the folks that gather for Friday-night karaoke, just come to embarrass their drunken selves in front of the masses. Either way, there's good time to be had at this Midtown dive.
1532 Madison (726-0906)
OUR FAVORITE COCKTAIL BARS
A-Tan's — You wouldn't think a Chinese restaurant would serve something called the Flaming Volcano (do they even have volcanoes in China?), but this fiery cocktail is the eatery's signature drink. Served in a ceramic bowl shaped like a volcanic mountain (complete with hula dancing girls at the base), the drink features brandy, white rum, amaretto, orange juice, grenadine, and sour mix. The best part? The crater is filled with Bacardi and set aflame upon serving.
3445 Poplar (452-4487)
Beauty Shop — Sip a perfectly mixed martini or a sophisticated Manhattan at the bar in this 1940s beauty-shop-turned-dining-spot. Or down your fruity Sex on the Beach under an old-fashioned hair-dryer seat while you munch on the Beauty Shop's signature Watermelon and Wings appetizer (a bowl of wings topped with sweet chili lime sauce, toasted cashews, and watermelon chunks).
966 S. Cooper (272-7111)
The Cove — Not only does this new hipster bar bring back the old nautical décor from the now-defunct Anderton's, it also boasts the most impressive cocktail menu in town. Owner Jim Marshall prides himself on his meticulously mixed drinks, and with selections like the CosmoPama (vodka, pomegranate and orange liqueurs, and peach bitters), we know why. For a spicy treat, try the Vampire, a Bloody Mary-esque concoction made with tequila, tomato, lime, and balsamic vinegar.
2559 Broad Ave. (730-0719)
EP Delta Kitchen — This upscale Beale Street eatery morphs into a hot dance club on Saturday nights. But whether you're dining or dancing, you must try its signature Sazerac cocktail. At nearly 180 years old, this may be the world's oldest cocktail recipe, featuring rye whiskey, Pernod, and the original Peychaud's bitters that made the drink famous when apothecary Antoine Peychaud developed it in the 1830s.
126 Beale (527-1444)
Encore — For the girlie drinker in you, Chef Jose Gutierrez's Encore Restaurant presents The Diva, a pink martini made with orange vodka, cognac, blood orange juice, and lime. Perfect for sipping with the girls before an all-night Sex in the City marathon.
150 Peabody Place (528-1415)
OUR FAVORITE BARGAIN BARS
Big Foot Lodge — It's not that the drinks at Big Foot Lodge are cheap, but you get quite a bit for your money's worth. After all, you can't wash down a 20-pound Sasquatch burger with a tiny 12-ounce beer. Like all the food at this downtown diner, the Big Foot Beer comes super-sized at 34 ounces.
97 S. Second St. (578-9800)
Silky O'Sullivan's — All your friends can drink out of the same cup at Silky O'Sullivans. Well, actually it's more like a bucket. We're not sure what's in the one-gallon Diver, but this fruity concoction is served in a mini-bucket with multiple straws for sharing. Don't worry. Alcohol kills germs. Just try not to sit too close to the alcoholic goat that lives on the patio. He just might steal a straw and give you goat cooties.
183 Beale (522-9596)
OUR FAVORITE BARS FOR AN ENERGY BOOST
Dish — Though this Cooper-Young tapas bar serves plenty of tasty cocktails, we're fans of The Fist, a combo of vodka, energy drink, and cranberry juice. This drink provides a much-needed wake-up call for dreary late-night drinkers. But don't sip it while lounging on dish's soft-cushioned "mattress seat" because the powers of the bed are guaranteed to send you off to the Land of Nod.
948 S. Cooper (272-0830)
Newby's — Newby's called their famed Rock Star drink a "Long Island Iced Tea on speed." Far from the typical Red Bull and vodka combo, this stay-awake cocktail features vodka, gin, rum, tequila, Triple Sec, and Roaring Lion energy drink. Take advantage of your newfound energy rush to shoot a few games of pool or dance through the set of a local or national touring act performing on Newby's spacious stage.
539 S. Highland (452-6203)
OUR FAVORITE DANCE CLUBS
Alfred's — There ain't no shame in booty-dancin' to Top 40 hits on a Saturday night. Sure, it might ruin your hipster street cred. But who cares? The late-night DJ at Alfred's spins all those songs you secretly sing along to on the radio but would never confess to liking in good company. So skip the indie rock show and head to Beale for a change.
197 Beale (525-3711)
Backstreet — The city's largest gay club claims the most spacious dance floor in town. And in typical gay club fashion, the DJs spin all the hits remixed into techno-infused, dance-worthy rhythms. Pretend you're on MTV's '90s dance show The Grind while grooving atop one of the club's raised platforms. Now if only we could find that hot hunk Eric Nies to host.
2018 Court Ave. (276-5522)
Senses — Senses may the closest thing Memphis has to a Vegas-style nightclub. With swanky, futuristic furniture, a massive dance floor, and the city's hottest DJs, it's easy to imagine you're a high-rollin' Vegas VIP. When you tire of the dance floor, step into the chilled-out Martini Lounge for a much-needed breather.
2866 Poplar (454-4081)
Sky Bar — Ever look up at Clark Tower and think, "I wonder what the view looks like from up there?" Lucky for you, the ultra-swank, hip-hop club Sky Bar (the Tower Room Restaurant by day) is located on the tower's topmost floor, and since it's surrounded by windows, you can glimpse the entire city while catching a break from the high-energy dance floor.
5100 Poplar, Floor 33 (767-8776)
Raiford's Hollywood Disco — Back from the dead, this much-loved Memphis institution offers the same disco beats, funky furnishings, and jerry-curl sportin' DJ Raiford that clubgoers have come to know and love. After Raiford retired last year, an enterprising pair of businessmen stepped in to save the revered discotheque. Thankfully, Raiford agreed to come back to man the DJ booth. Those 40-ouncers wouldn't taste the same without him.
115 Vance (528-9313)
OUR FAVORITE BLUES/JAZZ BARS
B.B. King's — You're not likely to catch the 82-year-old Blues Boy strumming his precious Lucille at this Beale Street blues club. B.B. King only plays a couple gigs there each year. But plenty of great Memphis blues, jazz, and soul acts, like the legendary Blind Mississippi Morris and soulstress Z-DA, fill in the gaps. Order the Jelly Roll cocktail and head upstairs for a birds-eye view of the stage.
143 Beale (524-5464)
Ground Zero Blues Club — The newest addition to the blues bar scene, this authentic-looking juke joint is a replica of actor Morgan Freeman's original Ground Zero Blues Club in Clarksdale, Mississippi. Red-and-white checked tablecloths and a string of year-round Christmas lights give the place a traditional juke joint vibe. And the best local blues acts perform here every weekend.
158 Lt. George W. Lee (522-0130)
King's Palace Café — Step inside King's Palace for a night of toe-tapping, finger-snapping jazz and spicy Cajun-inspired menu items (try the Voodoo Taters). Or enjoy a summer breeze on the King's Palace Patio where local blues acts fill Beale Street with the sound that made it famous.
162 Beale (521-1851)
Wild Bill's — Delta blues seekers flock to this authentic Midtown juke joint, where diverse patrons boogie to the house band between sips of 40-ounce beers and bites of hot wings and black-eyed peas. This place is so Southern, it even serves something called neckbones. But avoid those. Just dance the night away with friends (and maybe even some strangers).
1580 Vollintine (726-5473)
OUR FAVORITE PLACES TO ROCK OUT
The Buccaneer — Size-wise, this nautical-themed bar is more of a dinghy than a pirate ship, but that doesn't stop Midtown hipsters from crowding in for live rock shows nearly every night of the week. The Bucc, as it's affectionately called, is a must-go for those seeking a sneak peek at the city's underground and indie music scene.
1368 Monroe (278-0909)
The Hi-Tone — Recent performers at this hip Midtown venue have included New York-based indie rockers MGMT, local artistocrunk rappers Lord T & Eloise, and Greg Ginn of the legendary punk outfit Black Flag. The Hi-Tone's performers range the musical gamut, but no matter the genre, the line-ups are always top-notch. The Hi-Tone is the place to catch the best shows in Memphis. No question.
1913 Poplar (278-8663)
Murphy's — On any given weekend, you'll likely find a gritty punk band or a thrashing metal group performing at this tiny Irish-themed pub. Murphy's quaint stage is positioned low to the floor, which lends an intimate (if you can call punk rock intimate) viewing experience for fans. Warm up for the show with a Green Goblin (gin, melon liqueur, sweet and sour mix, and 7-Up).
1589 Madison (726-4193)
The New Daisy — The Daisy is the only all-ages rock club located on the typically 21-and-up Beale Street strip. Luckily, the bouncers will let youth pass so long as they're headed to one of the many rockin' shows by local and nationally touring acts at the Daisy. Recent performers have included the comical Muck Sticky, local hardcore outfit Prosevere, and spoken-word artist Henry Rollins.
330 Beale (525-8981)
Red Rooster — The overly-used-but-always-laughable phrase "rock out with your cock out" serves as the motto for this new downtown bar. Obviously, it's a play on their red-feathered mascot, which proudly guards the front door. Once inside, the rockin' out commences with raucous performances by Southern rock cover bands, blues and jazz acts, and plain ole rock-and-roll groups.
140 Lt. George W. Lee (818-2950)
The Stage Stop — We used to make '80s pop-culture references about shoulder pads and Aqua Net when referring to the Stage Stop in the annual bar guide. But the bar once known for 1980s rock cover bands has branched out into the wide world of metal. This Raleigh bar features multiple hardcore acts in its annual MDA Jam hosted by death metal act Massacre Machine, as well as numerous other hard rock shows throughout the year.
2951 Cela (382-1576)
OUR FAVORITE GAME-NIGHT BARS
Brookhaven Pub & Grill — This East Memphis bar offers plenty of seating for you and all your Grizzly-jersey sportin' buds on game night. Live sports (and even UFC matches) are broadcast on the pub's big-screen plasma TVs, and pub grub (like chicken tenders and fried pickles) is made fresh to order. Besides, you can't go wrong with a bar that has Newcastle on tap.
695 W. Brookhaven Circle (680-8118)
Calhoun's Sports Bar & Grill — South Main sports fans can get their ball game fix at Calhoun's while the significant other shops the neighborhood's art galleries and clothing boutiques. With $1.50 Papst on tap and five big-screen plasma TVs, your hubby may leave quite intoxicated, so it's not the most responsible babysitting option. But it will do. Note: Due to an ongoing legal challenge, Calhoun's may soon have a new yet-to-be-determined name.
115 G.E. Patterson (528-8600)
Jillian's — Watch the game on multiple TVs in Jillian's Video Café, and when the home team wins big, celebrate with your inner child in the bar's classic arcade room. When you tire of shooting spaceships in Galaga, hit up the Hi Life Lanes for a psychedelic game of glow bowling.
150 Peabody Place (543-8800)
OUR FAVORITE KARAKOE BARS
Willie Moffatt's — For ages, this Bartlett bar has held Thursday-night karaoke sessions with Rockin' Rodney. But thankfully, the old-school karaoke performers welcome newbies to the stage as well. Just remember to eat your Fried Chicken Pecan Salad after the performance, lest you embarrass yourself with lettuce stuck between your teeth.
2779 Old Whitten Rd. (386-2710)
Windjammer Restaurant — Though this popular East Memphis karaoke joint made the news earlier this year for a shooting inside the bar, the Windjammer isn't typically a dangerous place. In fact, most nights, it's a friendly neighborhood bar where patrons karaoke their little hearts out. Don't be afraid to check it out.
786 E. Brookhaven Circle (683-9044)
Yosemite Sam's — When Midtowners get drunk enough to sing off-key in front of complete strangers, they head to this Overton Square institution. But beware: Some of these crooners are pretty darn good. You're up against some stiff competition.
2126 Madison Ave. (726-6138)
OUR FAVORITE COMEDY CLUB
Comedy, TN — The only full-time comedy club in Memphis, this Bartlett venue books top-name national comedians, many of who perform regularly on Comedy Central. Since a good belly laugh burns calories, re-load with a bowl of Louisiana-style red beans and rice from the Creole Café and a cocktail from the club's full bar.
6102 Macon Rd. (384-4222)
OUR FAVORITE COUNTRY MUSIC BAR
Double Deuce — There's plenty of live country music four hours to the east in Nashville, but Memphians aren't exactly known for kickin' up their boots. That may change with Double Deuce, a new Western-themed bar with two locations. The Beale Street Deuce even has a mechanical bull to help macho cowboy-types show off their ridin' skills.
340 Beale Street (527-9002); 551 S. Highland (324-0730)
OUR FAVORITE MUSIC MUSEUM BARS
Hard Rock Café — Unlike those snooty Smithsonian museums, you can drink while you gaze at historic rock memorabilia in the Hard Rock Café. The Beale Street version of this national chain proudly displays Elvis' denim jacket from Jailhouse Rock, Johnny Cash's gun holster, and Carl Perkins' stage-worn blue suede shoes.
315 Beale (529-0007)
Rum Boogie Café — If guitars are your thing, make a beeline for Beale Street's Rum Boogie Café to see over 200 guitars signed by famous musicians. While you're there, stick around to hear blues and R&B standards performed by James Govan and the Boogie Blues Band.
182 Beale (528-0150)
OUR FAVORITE MOJITO BAR
Sauces — It's hard to find a minty-fresh mojito in these parts. Thankfully, there's Sauces, where mojitos are their specialty. Cool off with a refreshing Melon Mojito (Grand Melon and Midori) or arouse your inner passion with the Vanilla Passion Mojito (vanilla and Malibu passion fruit). Hungry? They even have mojito in the food. Try the mojito-marinated mango chicken.
95 S. Main (473-9573)
OUR FAVORITE NEIGHBORHOOD BARS
Kudzu's — Located in the up-and-coming Edge District, this friendly neighborhood bar didn't always have a neighborhood to cater to. Kudzu's was around long before the art galleries and coffeehouses moved in, but a lack of neighbors never left this bar empty. Midtown and downtown regulars drove in loyally . . . and still do. Stop in during Nancy Apple's Pickin' Party night for a good old-fashioned jam session.
603 Monroe Ave. (525-4924)
Zinnie's Old Place — Who'd have thought young, hip Rhodes students and lonely old men would ever gather in the same place? That's the scene at Old Zinnie's. We're not sure why the crowd is so diverse, but it may have something to do with OZ having the happiest happy hour in town. That's something college kids and old men can agree on.
1688 Madison (726-5004)
OUR FAVORITE IRISH PUBS
Celtic Crossing — Order a pint of Guinness on draft in this authentic Irish pub and tell us that first sip isn't as magical as kissing the Blarney Stone. Of course, legend has it that Blarney Stone kissers gain eloquent speech and you're likely to acquire the opposite after downing a few more pints of Guinness. But who's counting? Well, maybe Irish owner Jo Delahunty. But she'll let you know, in her thick Irish brogue, when you get out of line.
903 S. Cooper (274-5151)
Dan McGuinness — Though its Peabody Place location has closed, this Irish pub still has a lively presence in East Memphis. And why shouldn't it be lively? Not only does this pub offer karaoke and dole out Guinness by the pitcher, it even serves a beef dish smothered in Guinness gravy.
4698 Spottswood (761-3711)