Cafe Eclectic – I’d be hard pressed to find a restaurant that took as much pride in the artisan quality of their food as their role as a community building keystone. Founded in 2008 with a location near Rhodes College, they expanded to the downtown area with a little cafe in Harbortown. In 2013, they opened their University of Memphis location.
Each of the locations serves a slightly different, eclectic menu, but the quality of freshly prepared food is wonderful. Whether you’re looking for an excellent cup of coffee and scone for a study buzz or an delicious brunch for the family, Eclectic is the place. You won’t be disappointed with what you order.
In addition to excellent coffee’s, cafe’s latte’s and such, they also do homemade sodas and Mexican Coca Cola and Fanta (made with cane sugar vice corn syrup.)
They serve black bean patties as a meat substitute, so if you’re looking for a heartier vegetarian option this is also a good spot.
Locals Choice: Diablo Wrap (above), Black Bean Wrap or the Pear and Brie Panini (Below).
Cinnamon Rolls. Yes, they MAKE cinnamon rolls. Always a go-to option regardless of the time of day.
Bed Rock Eats and Sweets: If you are conscientious about dining and exercise and you like really well made food that is in the Paleo Diet discipline, then Bedrock is an excellent choice.
Started by Brandi Marter who was introduced to the Paleo concept at a local Crossfit Gym, she’s built a great business out of producing high quality food that is very nourishing. She’s reteaching much of the Memphis landscape what it means to “eat healthy.”
I ordered an enchilada that was a very tasty and satisfying knife and fork affair.
My lunch partner ordered a banana and waffle combo that was really excellent as well.
Essentially, if you’re looking for a nutritious, healthy option in the downtown area, BedRock is the place to go. They’ve also got great smoothies and a fridge full of takeout and catering options as well.
Bogie’s Delicatessen and Catering Co – http://www.bogiesdeli.com – Our family hits Bogie’s once a week. Be it for lunch or grabbing bagels for the week. As a purveyor of Boar’s Head Brand Meats, their cold cuts are always the highest quality. My girls like the turkey chef salad. For dessert the brownies and key lime squares are a hit. They also have a chicken salad that is great to keep in the fridge.
To keep my man card in tact, I prefer the Phildephia Royal with Genoa Salami, Cappy ham, roast beast, provolone, lettuce and maters on a French roll.
Local’s Choice – all of the above
Elwood’s Shack Let me start with a few observations. Yes, its in a Lowe’s parking lot. Yes, there is limited seating inside. We saw people in their Sunday best after church waiting for a table out in the sleet on a freezing day. If the movers and shakers of Memphis will wait in a Lowe’s parking lot in the freezing rain, then Elwood’s is clearly doing something right.
We took the family for Sunday brunch and had a wonderful Dixie Eggs Benedict (on a biscuit vice English muffin). Little Bit’s grilled cheese was a stout affair with a serious layer of cheddar and soft whole wheat bread–she was all over it, The Wife’s Avocado Turkey sandwich on a croissant was a great as well. This place has legendary brisket, a great smoked chicken Philly and the smoked turkey sandwich are great.
Oh by the way, their cinnamon rolls are a level up. It tastes like they’ve used honey as the sugar base for the glaze.
Breakfast:Dixie Benedict and Cinnamon rolls
Lunch: Chicken Philly or Brisket
Cheffie’s is a great low key salad and sandwich joint. Everything is made fresh. If you’re looking for fresh healthy options then this a great place to go. Since they’re about 400 yards off the Greenline, if you live anywhere near the walking trail, you’ve got a great little activity for the family.
After you’ve gotten all that activity under your belt and eat your salad or panini, you can blow that all out of the water with local beers, wine, gelato and magic cookie bars. They’ve got a great porch to sit outside and enjoy great spring or fall days. We love it because we can have a casual dinner and not worry about our kids making too much noise or running around the tables at our feet.
Local’s Choice: Spinach Salad or Crunchy Roast Beef Sandwich
Tamp and Tap in Downtown Memphis is a great spot for coffee, a light lunch or a pint after work. Nestled across from the Peabody in the Gayoso alleyway. I have to admit, I didnt expect much from a coffee shop sandwich. However both my compadre and I were blown away by the sandwiches we got. They were just really really tasty and filling. This space and its accessibility to the rest of downtown Memphis are a great place to meet after work or a great place to start for an evening downtown.
Local’s Choice: The Imperial and a WiseAcre Draft