A rotating menu of comfort-food favorites, including chicken-fried steak and roast beef with gravy, bolsters the hearty bar fare at The Spot Restaurant & Entertainment Complex, helping to fuel evenings of live entertainment. Attendees 21 and older gather to catch live bands, DJs spinning tunes, and comedians making wry observations or facing their fear of microphones. During DJ sets, patrons can take a break from dancing in a private VIP room with bottle service or by starting a games of darts or pool.
Flavors Indian Cuisine's menu paints palates with the vibrant colors, rich aromas, and tantalizing tastes of dishes from across the subcontinent. Vegetarian treats, such as the chickpea and tomato channa masala, rest peacefully alongside meaty tandoori treats such as the boneless chicken tikka or rice-filled biryani dishes. In addition to piling plates with savory meals, Flavors Indian Cuisine often dishes out dulcet treats, such as honeyed spheres of gulab jamoon, to keep sweet teeth and sugar-craving taste buds from seceding from the mouth.
Flavors Indian Cuisine's charming décor peppers eyeballs with sparkling chandeliers, vine-covered wood screens, and vibrant colors. Amid displays of Indian statues and artwork, rich robes of mauve tastefully clothe tabletops, and saffron-hued walls coordinate their outfits with spiced rice plates.
Chef Ray Gage stands behind his restaurant’s white-tiled counter, clutching his CB radio microphone like some barbecue chefs might clutch their tongs. The radio is just as crucial to his roadside barbecue business as the slabs of meat roasting in the smoker out back. That’s because Ray advertises to passing truckers via CB channel 16, jotting down orders and delivering them to surrounding truck stops or demolition derbies.
Rays knows his meals must be hearty enough to fuel the bellies of truckers barreling down I-55. To that end, he smokes thick slabs of beef and pork on beds of hickory in the small shack behind his restaurant, and slathers them in sweet, tangy sauce. He then serves hunks of meat with dollops of traditional southern sides, such as baked beans and potato salad.
To reach their table at Spaghetti Warehouse, guests commonly have to step through two doors: the front door of the restaurant and the door of the antique trolley parked inside. Since its inception in 1972, the Italian eatery has merged the functions of kitchen and museum. Artifacts such as grandfather clocks, factory flywheels, and circus billboards surround diners as they delve into signature plates of 15-Layer Lasagna or hand-rolled meatballs. Apart from the items they've amassed, each of the buildings also has a particular history, from the one-time ice-manufacturing plant in Columbus to Memphis's Civil War munitions depot. Given their storied pasts, it's no surprise that several of these venues house their own ghosts—at Houston's warehouse, for example, elevator lights have been known to flicker, objects are mysteriously found in new locations, and a lady in a white gown is said to roam the restaurant.
Yet the main attraction of the place is the delicious food. Like any great Italian meal, made-from-scratch dishes are created from family recipes passed down for generations via email. Guests devour the perfectly al dente pasta, crispy calamari, bottomless soups, and 12-layer chocolate cakes while dining with family and friends. It’s that feeling of togetherness that people love about Spaghetti Warehouse, a feeling that is only enhanced when the drinks start flowing and the air is punctuated by the sounds of laughter as kids play retro games, such as The Claw prize-grabbing machine.
Grawemeyer's in downtown Memphis offers an authentic taste of Germany by way of its loaded menu, lined with traditional favorites. Start off with a giant bavarian pretzel before choosing between the sauerbraten sandwich, made with pot roast and mashed potatoes on toasted german rye, or the gruyère spaetzle casserole. There’s also a deli counter in the back for fresh cuts of meats and cheeses. The restaurant’s custom-built bar has an extensive collection of wines and imported German beers to complement the menu. And on select evenings, piano music and trivia night spice up meals.
Don your nicest of men’s or women’s patterned vests and settle in for a night of elegant dining at your own pace; Safari’s dim lighting, cracked-plaster walls, and ornate molding create an Old World atmosphere perfect for discussing German expressionist film noir or the correctly patterned vests for sophisticated dogs. While thinking of the next thing to say, you can fill your mouth with a menu featuring a variety of tapas ($6 to $9) such as Creole crab cakes served with tri-colored peppers and shallot ($9); southern fried chicken skewers with three-cheese macaroni ($7); and Moroccan beef skewers with button mushrooms, onion, and cous cous ($8). Vegetarians can join in the plate-passing pageantry with a little falafel with roasted-garlic hummus and tempura-battered seasonal vegetables with Asian dipping sauce; while those craving a comfort food can savor the simple delights of pita pizzas such as the three-cheese pizza with cheddar, mozzarella, and fontina. Safari also offers a selection of fresh salads and wraps, including the fried tilapia wrap ($7).