Wednesday, April 17, 2013


2059 Madison Ave
Memphis, TN  38104

As I mentioned in the last post about Bar Louie, Overton Square is being revitalized.  One of the buildings that had been closed for a few decades used to house a restaurant called the Chicago Pizza Factory.  Apparently, the owner closed out of the blue.  It was open one day and closed the next.  I used to walk around the area.  Even though it had been closed for decades, you could look inside the window and still see the salt and pepper shakers on the table.  

Now the restaurant has been totally redone, and it's called Chiwawa.

They also remodeled the old sign.  It originally had the name of the restaurant.  Now it has a popular midtown slogan.  "Midtown is Memphis."

Their patio is huge!  There are two levels.  I'm sure this will be one of the most popular destinations this spring.

Here's the Mexican inspired menu.  It has a lot of hot dogs and tacos. 

The drinks are good.  I think the whiskey diet coke was about $5.  

I had the elote.  I forgot to take a picture, though.  It was corn smothered in cheese and spices.  It was delicious.  

The chips and guacamole were delicious, as well.

I forgot to take a picture before it was half eaten.... BUT... here is part of corn dog.  Garrett said it was good.  

I tried the churros.  I thought they were scrumptious.  Fried dough with cinnamon... What's not to love?

If you want to drink on a budget, they have PBR on draft for only $2.  

I have already been twice.  And with this nice weather, I will be back soon!

Chiwawa on Urbanspoon

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Coffee Bean Coffee at Home

Coffee Bean

Everyone who knows me knows that I'm a coffee addict.  However, when I was a freshman in college I didn't like coffee but I kept trying it until I started to love it.  Coffee Bean was the first place where I started to like coffee. My original favorite drink was the ultimate ice blended vanilla.  Now I usually prefer hot coffee with a splash of milk or cream.

Coffee Bean isn't located in Memphis, but their coffee can be ordered online.  I ordered French roast from  Maybe I like it because it's delicious or maybe it's because it was my first love of coffee.

I brewed my coffee on Friday using an Italian style percolator.  My friends from Spain introduced it to me, and I love it. I actually bought my coffee maker from Spain.

The water is in the bottom of the pot, and the ground coffee is in a basket in the middle.  The water boils and is forced upward through a small tube into the coffee grounds. The water spends more time in contact with the coffee grounds than an American style electric coffee pot.  Therefore the coffee is stronger, more espresso like.

Be jealous!  or just get your own!

On Saturday, I brewed more of this coffee.  However, this time I used a French press.  

This type of coffee maker requires boiling water beforehand.  Then the coffee and the grounds are both put together into the press.  After about 5 minutes, I pressed the top handle down.  There is a filter that pushes the grounds to the bottom separating the grounds from the coffee.  

Like the Italian percolator, the coffee is stronger than an American electric coffee pot.  Personally, I don't have a preference between the two at all.  Both make a coffee that is rich and delicious.  Once you've had coffee this way, you'll never look at coffee the same way.  

Both styles of coffee makers are available at Target and Amazon.  

Here is an American style percolator.

It also makes a deliciously strong brew.  When the water boils, it goes up through a small tube and then filters through the ground coffee.  It continuously goes through the coffee producing a strong cup of coffee.  

Once again, I can't tell a huge difference between the above three.  

Today, I made coffee using an espresso machine.  

I can honestly say this was my least preferred in the terms of taste.  It just didn't taste strong to me, especially when comparing it to the other methods.  I did steam my milk which was fun.  

Typically, I use this type of coffee maker.  It's a simple electric coffee maker, but its benefit is that it grinds the beans fresh everyday.  Currently, I am using Lavazza beans.  I use this maker the most because it's easiest and it has a timer.  I also like the fresh grind everyday.  The taste isn't as good as the percolators or the French press, but it still makes a good cup.

I also have a Keurig coffee maker.  It doesn't produce the strongest coffee.  However, what makes it fun is that you can have a variety of coffee (different flavors and strengths) on hand.  That way guests can choose what they prefer.  It's the easiest to clean up and it makes the perfect size cup.  

Here's my last one!  This is a cold brew system.  It takes the most time.  The coffee grinds basically sit in the water for about 12 hours.  It has a different taste.  I prefer the hot brewed coffee, but this one does not have any acidity.  The cold one is probably the best for ice blended drinks, though.  

Obviously, I heart coffee!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Overton Square Crawfish Festival

Overton Square Crawfish Festival
Memphis, TN  38104

Every year, there is a crawfish festival in midtown at Overton Square.  I have been several times.  However, this year it appeared to be bigger.  I think there may have been more people because of the revitalization in the area.

Anyway, the admission was free.  The crawfish was  $15.



Suck some head; eat some tail.  For crawfish, you basically, only eat the tail.  It's a lot of work, but the taste is worth it. Notice the yellow... not sure what is it... 

This was her first taste of crawfish.  

Do they look like cockroaches of the sea???

I'll definitely be back next year.  I'll also be at the one downtown next weekend!!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Bar Louie - Drinks!

Bar Louie
2125 Madison Ave
Memphis, TN 38104

One area of Memphis is known as Overton Square.  In the 70s and 80s, it was the place to play in Memphis.  It saw steady decline, but recently, it has seen a revitalization.  

Bar Louie is a small chain restaurant bar.  I have been to one in Little Rock and in St. Louis.  

Here is the one in Memphis.

This particular day, I was walking in the area, and we decided to go in and sit at the bar for a drink.  

The place was packed and there were only two seats at the bar.  They were the least desirable seats, because there was no view, but a column.  Fortunately, there was someone who worked there (presumably someone who worked in the office).  He gave us his seats.  

The friendliness continued.  The bar tender was friendly and joked with us.  In fact, they definitely win the friendly award.  We were greeted multiple times and multiple people wanted to help us.  

The drink was good.  It was strong, but not too powerful.  I think my whiskey diet was $5.50, so it's not too expensive. 

Unfortunately, we didn't eat, so I can't say anything about the food yet.  However, I know what I want when I go back.  It's called the "Blue Louie."  It's a hamburger that comes with blue cheese, spinach, bacon, and buffalo sauce. 

I recommend a visit!

Bar Louie on Urbanspoon

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Kroger's Manager Specials!

Kroger aka Shnogers
1761 Union Ave
Memphis, TN 38104

Everyone loves to go Krogering, especially me.  I have a growing addiction to going to Kroger, which we affectionately call Schnogers.  It used to be a Schnucks up until recently.

What I am addicted to is the "manager specials."  The manager specials are usually items that are getting close to the expiration date or hot items from the deli.  They are usually reduced about 50% or more.

I bought this lovely Easter basket for $5 on Monday.  Since the Easter Bunny skipped my house, I took care of myself a day later.

The produce section is a good place to check for the specials.  Its common to find a salad in a bag or some broccoli in a bag that has been reduced for quick sales.  The salad usually needs to be eaten within a day, so don't stock up.

I found these mushrooms on Tuesday.  They are delicious and worth the $.99.

Another fun place to check is the meat department.  There is a section in every Kroger that has reduced meat.  I rarely get anything from this section, because you definitely need to eat it that night.  

The seafood section usually has good buys, too.  I bought a small thing of crab legs not too long ago for about $5.  

Oftentimes, you can find dip on sale.  It's really good if you are having a party.  This dip was helluva good!

The bread department usually has some cakes, breads, etc for quick sale, too.  Here's a cake I bought for a co worker last year for 50% off.

I've bought flowers, too.  They don't last long, but it's a cheap.  

There's a small section that has various dry goods.  These are usually things that have been discontinued or damaged boxes.  These items are usually not near any expiration date.

The jewel of the manager's special is the deli area.  They have some party trays that are excellent if you are throwing or attending a party.  They're usually 12.99 and are reduced to 6.99.  

The chicken is the winner, though.  The rotisseries that are made that day that do not sell get marked down from 5.99 to 2.99.  They're not old at all.  

Eight pieces of chicken that were cooked that day go from 7.99 to 2.99.  Unbeatable!

The secret to the deli is to go whenever the deli closes.  I found the perfect time for my store is just after 7pm. 

Of course, I'll go back.... Maybe tonight about 7!  

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Texas de Brazil

Texas de Brazil
150 Peabody Pl #103
Memphis, TN 38103

For Easter Sunday brunch, we decided to go to the Texas de Brazil with its unlimited quality meat.  We like to go a couple of times a year.  It's not cheap, but the quality is superb.  For Easter, the price was $42.99 (which included the salad bar, meat, dessert, and a mimosa).

First we started with the "salad bar," which included salad, crab bisque, various cheeses, salami, bacon, eggs, sausage, potatoes au gratin, shrimp, asparagus, and this list goes on and on and on.  I avoided the salad and tried to keep the other things to a minimum as to not spoil by meat appetite.

They also bring you mashed potatoes, parmesan rolls which melt in your mouth, and plantains to cleanse your palate between your meats.  

You have a token on your table, and when you are ready to eat, you flip it from red to green.  They bring a constant supply of perfectly seasoned and cooked meat.  

I had parmesan chicken, parmesan pork, chicken wrapped in bacon, filet mignon wrapped in bacon, lamp chops, leg of lamb, top sirloin, BBQ ribs, and their speciality which I think is another garlic sirloin.  And you can have as much as you want.  I had as much as I could stand and then some.

I ate till my stomach hurt.  Dessert was included in the meal price, so I got a carrot cake to go.  I know I will be back.  I just have to figure out how to eat so much without being so full!  If you haven't been, you must go!  It's a national chain, so it's in other cities, too.  

Texas de Brazil on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Half Shell

Half Shell
688. S. Mendenhall Rd
Memphis, TN  38117

The Half Shell is a restaurant focused on seafood in Memphis.  The prices ranges from under $10 to almost $40, depending on whether you order a po boy sandwich or a steak and lobster.

I started with a whiskey diet coke.  It was strong and less than $5.

I started with 6 peel and eat shrimp.  It's one of my favorite foods.  Only the shells remain. I believe it was $7.95

Then I had a soup and salad for $8.95.  The salad was loaded with bacon and cheese, and I chose blue cheese dressing.  I love a salad that is so loaded with toppings that I don't have to use a lot of dressing.

For my soup, I had their delicious crab bisque.  It had crab on top.  It was full of crab, creamy, and delicious.  

Everyone enjoyed their food, but I didn't think to take pictures.  No one had any complaints.  Some of the things they ordered included tilapia, voodoo tuna, and jumbo fried shrimp po boy.  

I'm sure I'll be back.  Next time, I think I'll try the tilapia royale which came with spinach cakes.  

Half Shell on Urbanspoon

Monday, April 1, 2013

Krispy Kreme and Dodge's Chicken

Late Night Munchies...

Krispy Kreme

4244 Elvis Presley Blvd.
Memphis, TN 38116

After dinner, I wanted a maple bacon donut from Gibson's, but they were COMPLETELY out of donuts at 10:45pm.  Once I mentioned donuts, two others were bent on going to Krispy Kreme, where we got a dozen hot glaze donuts.

Why stop there?  Another friend and I decided that we would prefer having something savory.

3923 Elvis Presley Blvd
Memphis, TN 38116.

First of all, at 11pm, this gas station was beyond packed with a long line of people needing their late night chicken fix.

I ordered an 8 piece dark and my friend ordered 12 spicy wings.

Krispy Kreme donuts are always yummy especially when they are fresh and hot.  Of course, I've never had a bad warm donut from anywhere.  My only complaint is that it's not closer to home.

Dodge's chicken was ok.  There's nothing wrong with it, but it doesn't tantalize your mouth.  The wings were spicy enough, but the breading is a bit thick.  Memphis has many places with superior fried chicken but they aren't open late at night.  If you need late night chicken, you take what you can get.  

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts on Urbanspoon