For All Y’all in Memphis
What was the most important thing I learned on my recent work trip to Memphis? The plural of y’all is all y’all. Big, important stuff I’m dealing with at work, right? Maybe I’m a little too much of a New Yorker for my own good, but this trip got me acquainted with a lovely part of America that I’d otherwise never think to visit. Although I missed all the Elvis sites and creepy impersonators, I did have a wonderful meal, and that’s enough for me (hence the “Fatty” in Fatty Kat)!
Our partners brought us to a gorgeous restaurant called Acre housed in a beautiful rustic mansion. And yup, as you may have guessed, Acre is set on an acre of land! Good call, Carly! Alesia made sure we scored the private dining room which helped shield the rest of the diners from our raucous laughter.
Let’s talk design. I loved every aesthetic feature about this restaurant. The farm to table movement was incredibly alive in the many unfinished wood elements and casual fine dining concept. Alesia and I fawned over the clean, simple yet funky lobby area. Love the yellow door and coffee table made of tree trunks! But what really anchored this area was a beautiful drawing of two horses.
This bar reminded me of some of my favorite NYC spots: ABC Kitchen meets West Village meets speakeasy. Ok, ok, my phone doesn’t really do it justice but the “mixologist” minded cocktail menu definitely needs this complementary space to come alive. And I’m sure Brian was happy to find his beloved Chopin!
Here’s the private dining room we ate in and with our very own yellow reindeer wall fixtures. Fancy, huh? Check out the wall paper on the ceiling! Never seen that before. I SWEAR I COULD LIVE HERE!
The Tiny Octupus Salad was not so tiny but delicious at any size! The avocado and spicy miso vinaigrette was lightly acidic and refreshing. I live for fresh avocado (and these were fresh), and the cashews really added a unique richness to this octopus salad. Blame the food coma because I can’t remember how this 8-legged guy was cooked. Regardless, the meat was tender and not rubbery at all.
Nomz nomz nomz! Broiled pike served over mascarpone polenta, chanterelle mushrooms, delicious smoked steelhead roe and anchovy mustard sauce. This entrée was delicately flavorful in that the diverse flavors weren’t in-your-face upon the first bite. It took a few seconds to really register the harmonious combination of fresh fish, rich fish roe and sharp mushrooms. Although this dish could’ve used a little bit of salt to really bring out the flavors, I appreciated its subtlety and understated elegance. (I sound like I’m writing for some snazzy magazine, don’t I? Sorry!)
Yay, my favorite part of any meal, dessert! Acre’s Gateau Basque was pretty damn good. With a vanilla cream and guava jelly filling, it was hard not to lick the plate. Alas, the professional in me showed restraint. Maybe I should’ve ordered the Sticky Toffee Date Cake, because Alesia and Carly were still talking about it the next day. Sounds like some next level dessert to me!
All in all, I had a great time and couldn’t have hoped for more in a “work” dinner. Thanks to everyone in the Poag family for taking care of us! Can’t wait to visit all y’all again.