Bob’s Barksdale Restaurant, Memphis TN

For our last morning in Memphis, we picked two places for breakfast. I went with the older of the two, and Marie went with the more modern. Let’s see how that worked out for us.

Known for thirty years as simply “Barksdale Restaurant,” this breakfast-and-lunch place had the name of its owner appended to it after Bob Henry purchased it around 2000. Mr. Henry passed away in 2014 but the old greasy spoon has carried on with a big and loyal crowd of regulars who have breakfast here several times a week.

We slept really well and checked out of our hotel, and Marie’s brother Karl, feeling hungry, decided to come with us on our silly two restaurant indulgence and eat here rather than waiting for what would be our second breakfast with Marie’s sister. I was hoping to be good and not indulge too much, but I’d also read that the country ham here is out of this world.

I maybe have meat with breakfast about once a month. For somebody who enjoys barbecue and hot dogs as much as I do, it’s unlikely that I could ever go fully vegetarian, but we do observe meatless Monday just because we’d like to be a little healthier, and this has extended into my choices at, say, Thai restaurants, where I’ll probably order tofu instead of chicken or pork. I’ve been thinking about my meals that way for so long that having country ham at breakfast seems very strange these days. Then I got this absolutely gigantic slab of it. Good grief, even when I was eating like an unhealthy twenty-two year-old every single day, that’s a huge amount of meat on the plate.

For what it’s worth, though, that was some really excellent country ham. I only ate about a third of it, but I enjoyed every sinfully salty bite.

Of course, another reason that I didn’t finish my breakfast was because I knew that we had two more barbecue places on the to-do list later in the day, and I wasn’t sure whether these would be “sample about a third of the order” joints like the two I’d visited the day before, or “eat every last amazing bite” places like Scott’s-Parker had been. But if we were not sampling, and just going to sit down to a regular breakfast at Barksdale, I’d be very happy to return for some hash browns and a biscuit. This is a great old place, and the service was terrific. I love the simplicity of old greasy spoons like this. However, as we’d learn about an hour later, there’s something to be said for a restaurant that’s a little more modern…

Bob’s Barksdale Restaurant
237 Cooper St
Memphis, TN 38104


You can see all the restaurants that we have visited for our blog on this map, with links back to the original blog posts. It’s a terrific resource for anybody planning a road trip through the southeast!

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