Sauce Boss back in town at Blues City Wed-Sat

The Sauce Boss, the musician who sings songs about cooking gumbo while he cooks a big pot of gumbo onstage, will be back at Blues City Cafe this Wed-Sat, May 28-31.  This is his third booking at Blues City in 8 months, so he must be bringing in some good-sized crowds when he plays there.

The unique thing about the Sauce Boss is that when he finishes his set, everyone eats.  He takes out plastic bowls and invites everyone to come up to the stage and sample the gumbo he has been cooking.  It’s pretty good gumbo, too, from what I remember from previous Sauce Boss concerts.

Definitely one of the more unique music options you’ll find on Beale this weekend.  Check him out if you get a chance.

Tube Top Boutique updated for 2008

It’s May 27, which means Tube Top Month is a mere five days away.  I spent part of the weekend updating the Tube Top Boutique, my storefront that sells tube tops.

The boutique sells solid colored tube tops, striped tube tops, print tube tops, tube top jumpsuits and rompers, almost tube tops (halter tops – if it has straps it technically isn’t a tube top), and tube top accessories such as strapless bras.  In addition to loading up those categories with new inventory for ’08, I upgraded the software behind the site to improve the shopping cart and other parts of the shopping experience.

All credit card processing and shipping is handled by, so you know you’re doing business with a site you can trust.  All my site does is refer business to Amazon… every time someone buys a tube top from the boutique, I get a 4-8% commission on the sale depending on monthly volume.  So, you can buy some tube tops and support your local blogger at the same time.

ATTN MY FAVORITE BLOGGER/MILF:  This year I’ve added a new category called NFL tube tops.  Take a look at the tube top below, available under that category:

It’s the Indianapolis Colts tube top.  It can be worn with or without the strap (I recommend “without,” as it’s not a true tube top “with”).  So my favorite blogger/MILF can show her support for her stupid overrated Peyton and wear a tube top at the same time.

*sigh* Long weekend is over… so the days of 9, 10, 12 hour sleep are gone for a while.  Back to work.  Trivia night tonight at the Saucer, possibly followed by a stop at Calhoun’s or whatever they’re calling it now.

Calhoun’s Sports Bar and Grill forced to change name

Calhoun’s Sports Bar and Grill, the tiny little bar on G.E. Patterson next to Cheesecake Corner that has been open since December 31, will soon have a new name.  There’s a restaurant chain that operates several locations in Middle and East Tennessee that goes by the name Calhoun’s, and they have sent our Calhoun’s a cease-and-desist letter.  I’ve seen the other Calhoun’s advertise on TV during Tiger games; it’s apparently a big operation.  I guess, as a place that prides itself on its food, they have a problem with a restaurant by the same name serving school lunchroom pizza.  The owners and regulars are brainstorming a new name for the place.  If you have ideas or suggestions, swing by the place and give ’em your input.

They can change the name, but as long as they don’t change the $1.50 PBR, I’ll be happy.

Pics: The new Downtown Blue Monkey

I arrived for brunch yesterday at the Downtown Blue Monkey about 10 minutes after it opened.  Here are a few pics of the new place (click on images for full-sized view):

The entire gang showed up over the next hour, and enjoyed the Monkey’s brunch menu and happy hour prices (happy hour lasts from open until 7 on Sundays).  The Nuh-Uh Girl ordered salad with ketchup as dressing.  Gross!  Then, even grosser, she wondered how pancakes would taste with ketchup:

The Nuh-Uh Girl and the Nuh-Uh Sister have this game they play called “Name a food that doesn’t go with either chocolate sauce or ketchup.”  So far they’ve yet to name one food that (in their minds) doesn’t go with one or the other.

Then the Nuh-Uh Girl asked, “I wonder what ketchup ice cream would taste like?”  What is wrong with that girl?

On the walk down to the Blue Monkey, I passed the Family Dollar store on Main.  There was a poster on the window saying that FD now carries the Bugle Boy clothing line.  Talk about a brand whose identity has gone down the proverbial crapper.  In the late ’80s that was one of the hottest brands around.  And now it’s being sold at Family Dollar?  Sounds like Bugle Boy needs to fire its marketing department.

One of the brunch crew recently celebrated the 1-year anniversary of the day he met his fiancee.  So he took her to Circa by John Bragg (who, I’ll mention one more time, was our BBQ sponsor).  “I don’t even want to look at a menu,” my friend told John.  “You pick what you want us to have,” he said.  So the couple got a secluded back room at Circa and were served an elegant six-course meal, each course specially designed by the chef himself.  They said it was one of their best meals ever.  So if you want a custom meal designed for a special occasion, Circa would be a great place to do it.

We stayed at brunch until 2:15, longer than we’ve stayed at the Majestic or McGuinness in a long time.  Everyone seemed to have a great time and I have a feeling we’ll be back there a lot.  Majestic may be able to hold on to a place in the Sunday brunch rotation; McGuinness probably won’t.  As much as we all like Amy, the mimosa and bloody mary prices just aren’t competitive with the Monkey and Majestic, and breakfast ends too early at McG (noon, compared with 2 at the Monkey and 3 at Majestic).  I’ll try to include McG on my list of nighttime stops more than I have in the past to make up for it.

After brunch, we moved to the Saucer to shoot pool, then I wandered down to Big Foot for a couple of $2 34 oz. beer specials.  That pretty much did me in… wandered to Sawaddii for Paul’s Drunkass Food (lettuce wraps = GOOD) then home.

Revising one of my online stores today, then heading out to eat (probably the Monkey) then to the Saucer for Pint Nite.

Already looking forward to next Sunday

This promises to be a very fun Sunday Fun Day, with no work tomorrow, first brunch at the Monkey, $2 beer at Big Foot, Sunday with Sam at Itta Bena, and possible appearances at the Saucer, Rooster, McGuinness, Calhoun’s, and who knows where else today.  But, I’m already looking forward to next Sunday because…

THE DEMPSEYS PLAY DOWNTOWN HUEY’S NEXT SUNDAY!!!!! Sunday, June 1, 8:30 PM to midnight.  First time they’ve played there since December, and there’s no better place to see them than Huey’s.  Can’t wait.

Attn brunchers: Majestic Grille closed tomorrow (Sun 5/25) for private party 11 AM – 1:30 PM

One of the brunch crew’s regular spots, the Majestic Grille, will be closed tomorrow, Sunday, May 25, for a private party from 11 AM to 1:30 PM.  It isn’t Majestic week on our rotation anyway, but I know that some of the crew likes to pop in for a Bloody Mary even on the off-weeks.  The good news is, the restaurant will open to the public at 1:30 and brunch will continue to be served until 3 PM.

Even though this would be McGuinness week 1 for brunch, we’re having to rearrange the schedule now that the Monkey is open.  We’ll be at the Downtown Blue Monkey for brunch tomorrow at 11.  And no, we’re not cheating on McG bartender Amy… she’s known for months this is coming.  Maybe I can arrange to pop in and see Amy on our way back from the Monkey, as we’re heading to Big Foot for $2 34 oz. beers.

Whatever ends up happening, with most everyone having Monday off, it is definitely going to be Sunday FUN Day, in a big way.

One band. Two clubs. Two Saturdays.

One of my favorite local bands ever, ’80s hair band cover band Aquanet plays Downtown Memphis tonight and next Saturday.  Tonight you can catch them at the Red Rooster.  Next Saturday, May 31, they’ll be at the Flying Saucer.

So come on down either this Saturday or next, and catch all your favorite ’80s songs by Motley Crue, Ratt, Poison, Bon Jovi, Warrant, Def Leppard, and all the other hair bands.  Aquanet really puts on a show, with lighting, costumes, everything.  Not to be missed.

Which of the two venues is a better fit for their show?  Hard call.  It’s hard to find a better place to hear them than the Saucer; however, at the Rooster, you have the bonus of watching the antics of the one and only Robby Bobby as they play.  Either way, you’re sure to have a good time.

As for me personally, since I already have plans on a rooftop tonight, I’ll probably wait ’til next Saturday and catch them at the Saucer.  Next weekend is going to be a good weekend for hearing some great bands Downtown… more details to come…

Friday update

So last night I decided to check out the new Thursday ’80s night at Raiford’s. Since the place opens early (9 PM), I decided to get there early to see if any young-professional types were there getting an hour or two of dancing in before bedtime. Ummm… no, they weren’t there. It was me and one other couple for about the first hour and a half. Pretty empty. It’s a shame too, because it seems like it could be a really fun night. The guy who normally works the door (Terry I think?) who wears the suit and points at the tip glass was DJing. I really liked his song selection. He was playing ’80s, but also some disco, and different disco than the standard playlist that Raiford runs through on the weekends. And there were mixed drinks (I stuck with the old standby – quart bottle of Bud Light – though). I think this night has a lot of potential… it just needs to develop a crowd.

Maybe it did develop a crowd later in the evening… but by 11:30 I was tired of being in a near-empty club and decided to do a venue change to the new Downtown Blue Monkey. They did a great job with the place. It’s big and roomy and open and reminds me a lot more of the Midtown Monkey than the small, cozy old Downtown Monkey that burned down in ’05. A lot of the old staff is back, which is a promising sign. Huge, long bar along the left side, long enough to seat probably 20 or 25. It took forever to open but I’m very impressed with the place.

It remains to be seen how much the Downtown Monkey will figure into my barhopping plans. I’m going to go in there several times over the next week and see what kind of crowd develops – will it still be a neighborhood bar like the old Downtown Monkey, or will it develop more of a singles crowd like the Midtown Monkey? Time will tell. I plan on giving it a try this Sunday for brunch, and I know some of the rest of the brunch crew plans on doing the same.

Downtown Memphis in the news: Jennifer Biggs from the CA has a dining review of the new club Ground Zero next door to the Westin.

Also in the news: An article about Erykah Badu, who will perform at the Orpheum next Wednesday.

Plans for the long Memorial day weekend:

  • Tonight:  Don’t know.
  • Saturday:  Showing a new Memphian around Downtown, which is one of my favorite things to do; and watching Sunset Symphony and the fireworks from the rooftop of The Lofts, where my buddy Lee has a condo.  This looks to be a fun night.
  • Sunday:  Brunch at the Monkey.  $2 34 oz. beers at Big Foot.  Attn Magan: BUY ME A BEER!!!
  • Monday:  Pint Nite at the Saucer will probably start early for me.  Hmmm that 14-consecutive-beer record of mine just might fall.

Time to head back to work.  I’m doing file imports this week, which is about as exciting as watching paint dry.  5:00 cannot get here fast enough.

The Thursday night “what’s going on tonight” post

Here are the options for partying Downtown tonight:

  • Here Come the Mummies on the Peabody rooftop, 6-10 PM, $5 cover, ladies free until 8 PM
  • Charlie Wood Trio on the Madison rooftop, 5:30-10:30 PM
  • Q107.5 patio party with Garry Goin and G3 and a special appearance by Ferras at EP Delta Kitchen, 8:30-til
  • Mudflap Kings at the Flying Saucer, 9:30 PM, $3 cover
  • Opening night at the Downtown Blue Monkey, if the rumors I hear are true
  • Adrenaline at the Red Rooster; ladies get in free on Thursdays; giveaways, contests for ladies
  • Eric Hughes Blues Band at Ground Zero
  • ’80s for the Ladies Night at Hollywood Disco (Raiford’s). Opens 9 PM; ladies get in free; only night of the week when you can get mixed drinks there
  • Amateur Night at Club Lame… I mean, Ladies’ Night at Club Atlas
  • Trivia night at TJ Mulligan’s Pinch, 8 PM
  • Ladies’ Night at Tug’s at the River Inn at Harbor Town on Mud Island. Half-price drinks for ladies

Just got a report that the paper is off the window, the chairs are arranged, and a beer truck has arrived at the Downtown Monkey.  Looks like the rumors may indeed be true this time.

As always, my recommendations are in green.  Of the 3 recommended picks above, the only one I’m likely to make it to is Raiford’s.  I’ll get to the Monkey sometime this weekend and check it out; just don’t feel like walking that far tonight.  Actually, kinda curious to stop by the Saucer at some point this evening, and see if the place has any regulars left besides me.

Revised snaCks menu at Circa

Circa by John Bragg recently overhauled its bar snacks menu.  These snacks are available from 4 until close on the patio and at the bar.  Here’s the new list – looks like some new items have been added, and it’s nice to have the option to mix and match.


bar snacks

Choose any 3 for just $5
Fresh Louisiana Gulf Oyster
on the half shell with bloody mary granita
Oyster Bienville
crabmeat & hollandaise gratin
Oyster Rockefeller
with pernod, spinach & Parmigiano
Crawfish Beignet
with roasted red pepper remoulade
Sesame Crusted Tuna
with ginger & seaweed salad
Chilled Jumbo Shrimp
with cocktail sauce
Crabmeat Stuffed Shrimp
With Dijon aioli
Seared Sea Scallop
with basil oil
Beef Tenderloin Carpaccio
with soy, lemon & ginger
Grilled Beef Tenderloin
bite-sized with crispy onions
Homemade Guacamole
with corn tortilla strips