Memphis Barbecue......Simply THE BEST

Memphis Barbecue……Simply THE BEST

Go on the internet and type in Memphis Barbecue and you will quickly see how many options there are with BBQ joints all over the great city of Memphis.  Just for fun, the count ran to over 50 different restaurants and this does not include those famous places with several locations.  Ask local residents their favorite BBQ and several names and types of BBQ will be mentioned.  Folks are very passionate about the best place to enjoy BBQ and heated debates have quickly led to shouting matches.  So, the purpose of this article is to give visitors to The Bluff City a brief listing of where to go for the finest BBQ to be found based on hundreds of input from Memphis locals.  This is not a ranking from 1 to whatever but rather a good selection of places to go where “you simply cannot go wrong”.

Central BBQ
Central BBQ has been and will continue to be an award winner for local residences based on annual polls.  They feature pulled pork BBQ with their on variety of sauces and smoked ribs that have been dry rubbed and slow cooked over hickory wood fire.  The pork plate is the most popular which can be ordered with pulled or chopped BBQ or ribs.  The ribs can be ordered wet or dry.  Central offers several side dishes to accompany your entrée.

 Marlowe's Ribs and Restaurant
Marlowe’s Ribs and Restaurant is located on Elvis Presley Blvd. a mile south of Graceland and boasts of great BBQ including pulled pork and ribs.  They cook their meats fresh every day for up to 16 hours.  This causes the meat to appear pink, this is called the “Smoke Ring”.  Their trophy case is full of awards won over the years dating back to 1974 when the restaurant was founded.  A natural Elvis tie-in is the fleet of Pink Cadillacs they use to pick up hotel guests.

Three Little Pigs
Three Little Pigs found in East Memphis on Quince Road at White Station offers some of the best tasting BBQ in all of Memphis.  The meat is hickory-smoked for over 20 hours and served with their tangy mild or fiery hot barbeque sauce.  Three Little Pigs offers freshly made coleslaw and a side of their original recipe barbeque beans that goes wonderfully with the entrée.  This family owned and operated restaurant has a great motto, “We serve no swine before its time!”

Corky's Ribs & BBQ
Corky’s Ribs & BBQ main location is on Poplar Ave. in East Memphis and boasts of a strong loyal following of their famous BBQ.  Corky’s has 10 locations in total with 6 of them in the Memphis area.  They serve authentic Memphis BBQ slow cooked over hickory and charcoal.  The ribs (wet, dry, or combination) and pork plates are very popular with the locals.  The lobby area is filled with pictures of famous people who have dined at Corky’s.



Charles Vergos’ Rendezvous downtown in the alley across from the Peabody.  As the saying goes, “you have not experienced Memphis ribs until you dine at the Rendezvous”.  This establishment has been serving up BBQ and especially ribs since 1948.  They offer an extensive menu with pork shoulder and the famous dry ribs leading the way.  If you find yourself unable to decide on what to order, ask your waiter for a recommendation.  They have been there since Forever!

Tops BBQ
Tops BBQ
You can talk about BBQ chains with all the fancy this and that, but you go to Tops BBQ for the pure and simple taste of Pulled or Chopped BBQ.  OK, so they have 15 locations in and around Memphis, you might say that says a lot about success.


One and Only BBQ

One and Only BBQ
About 5 years ago, (recent in the history of Memphis BBQ terms) One and Only BBQ opened their doors on Perkins Extended at the RR tracks.  Naturally, BBQ enthusiasts tried out the offerings to great success.  They smoke the meats in cast iron smokers which gives that Smoky Flavor.  They choose to be open 7 days a week, 12 hours a day starting at 10:00 am.  The following has been strong and loyal and just recently they opened their 2nd and then 3rd locations.


Germantown Commissary

Germantown Commissary is located by the RR tracks in Old Germantown.  When you drive upand see folks standing outside waiting to get into the lobby which is packed with BBQ lovers waiting on a table to open up, you know the offerings must be great.  They offer an extensive menu that includes BBQ plates, ribs, and combos.  They also offer Boss Man Salad, BBQ Shrimp, Hot Tamales, and you simply must try the Homemade Banana Pudding!  As the saying goes, "So Good Y'ull Slap Yo' Mama."



1 Review
Melanie Spiller
Memphis, TN
Great Article!

Very informative article about Memphis BBQ Restaurants

July 2017

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13 Jul 2017

By Bill Sumner