Monday update

We had a Moody Ques planning meeting for 2019 yesterday that went really well. Team members will get an email in a few days, but at the end of this post I will give a quick summary of what was discussed. First, though, let’s get the news covered.

Big event coming up at FedExForum this Sunday 11 AM-2 PM: Soup Sunday to benefit Youth Villages. You’re given a container that holds four soup cups, and you get to walk around and sample soups, breads, and desserts from 50 of Memphis’ best restaurants. When you’re done eating you get to vote on what soup you liked best. It’s considered a big honor for a restaurant to win Soup Sunday.

Okay, those of you who have been reading this blog for over a year can skip the next paragraph. You know what I am about to say.

Soup Sunday is not an event where you want to show up fashionably late. The best restaurants will be running out of soup not long after 12. You want to be standing at the door at 10:55, waiting to be let in. Also, when you get to the FedExForum concourse, you don’t necessary go to the first soup table you see, because that’s what everyone does. Go farther to the back and there will be plenty of tables with no line at all. There’s a reason your container holds 4 cups of soup; fill it up with 4 before you start eating. Also, if there are particular restaurants whose soups you really want to try, find out where they are set up as early in the day as possible (I think there are maps).

Edible Memphis posted that they were invited to stop by Comeback Coffee, opening in the Pinch next month, and meet the new chef there. He turned out to be a familiar face – Cole Jeanes, who opened Kinfolk in the 409 South Main food hall and who was more recently involved in P.O. Press out in Collierville. He plans to have seasonal menus with ingredients that are as fresh as possible. There will be toasts and pastries in the morning, with breakfast tacos an idea for Saturdays. There will be plenty of sandwiches, with bread made in house, for lunch as well as salads. Gluten-free and vegan diets will be covered by the offerings at Comeback.

Your Inner Yogi at 10 N. Second will start offering Lunch Box Vinyasa Flow Wednesdays at noon beginning this week. This is a 45 minute quick yoga fix to loosen up any kinks you might have and keep you strong through the remainder of the day. $15 drop-in or class pass. YOGA!

Do I have any readers who make their own tacos? I’m pretty sure I do.Why wrap your tacos in flour tortillas when Costco sells cheese wraps? They come in Parmesan, Jarlsberg, and cheddar. In addition to adding even more cheese to your tacos, they are a low-carb alternative to tortillas as well.

On Your Feet!, the story of Emilio and Gloria Estefan, begins its week-long run at the Orpheum tomorrow.

News from the BBQ meeting

One thing about being on a Top 10 shoulder team – and we learned this in 2008 with the Ques Brothers, our old team – is that once you get up on stage and get that trophy, everyone wants to be a part of your team. I have had at least five people approach me about joining this year, and I know other members have had people inquire as well.

What we are going to do is hold off on adding new members until after March 15, to give our current members a chance to renew their spots. In the meantime, we’ll build a waiting list of who is looking to join. After March 15 we will see how many spots we have open (I expect it to be between 6 and 15) and start contacting people on the waiting list. Those who indicated they could work when they expressed interest will be given preference. There are various ways to help – load-in, build, painting, bartending, bringing side dishes, running errands (keg runs/ice runs/etc.) during the festival, cleaning up the booth to get ready for presentation on Saturday, load-out.

We continue to draw interest from sponsors; in fact, in the 48 hours before the meeting I had two companies indicate an interest in a sponsorship. One is a large company and we have to figure that one out, considering we already have two sponsors and a membership cap of 60. We might be able to take on additional small sponsorships. Two liquor companies and two local breweries have expressed interest. The breweries are all going to be at the Memphis Flyer’s Beer Bracket Match-Up Monday at Aldo’s Downtown today. I had planned to go to that anyway and now I am going to make sure to wear my Moody Ques shirt.

Very little will change as far as the booth and the competition shoulder cooking. We are entering a few ancillaries this year, including wings (which my neighbor Mac is very excited about) and a brand-new ancillary category, turkey. It was stressed that when possible, we want to cook enough of the ancillaries so that team members get to sample them.

Dues will go up by a very small amount, around 5%. This is necessary to meet rising Memphis in May and vendor costs. For new members there will be a small initiation fee.

We are entering Best Booth again, building a booth facade that spotlights the honored place of the year, which is Memphis itself. In other words, we need to build a facade that is SO Memphis. I made two suggestions: One was a convenience store with a sign reading “PREPAID CELL PHONES & HOT WINGS SOLD HERE” in the window, and the other was 201 Poplar. Both ideas were rejected. We decided to delay facade planning until we see what materials we can borrow from our booth sponsor.

It was a really good and productive meeting, and thanks to Jamie and Aaron for hosting us and providing snacks. It’s a totally different vibe when you have the first planning meeting after finishing 7th out of 57 teams rather than 53rd out of 57.

After the meeting I stopped by Max’s Sports Bar, where I had the pleasure of talking BBQ with Squeal Street pitmaster Bones for about half an hour. They expect to be moving closer to our location; they are a growing team and had to move up to the same size booth as we have. That would be fun, if we were neighbors. From what I heard from Bones, it sounds like Squeal Street may be joining us on stage for a competition cooking trophy.

All right, time to hit Publish and get this day started. The ATM ate my debit card that had a huge crack down the stripe Saturday, so I have to go to the bank and get a new one printed. Thank goodness the ATM let me withdraw cash before it chewed up the card. After that I’ll make a quick stop at Silly Goose, followed by a trip to Aldo’s for the Flyer’s beer bracket matchup. The sales manager of one of the breweries just loves Perjorie T. Roll and I know she will be so excited to get to see her this afternoon. Back tomorrow with more news.