Home of the blues and Birthplace of Rock 'n Roll, Elvis' Graceland, fascinating Mud Island and the famed bomber, the Memphis Belle, this historic port city, still a thriving southern financial center, offers a combination of culture and charm.
Memphis looms large in American music…probably more so than any other city. Memphis is where Blues music was first put on paper by W.C. Handy and then celebrated, with gusto and around the clock, on Beale Street. Memphis is where Rock 'n Roll began and where Elvis Presley ruled as the King. And, Memphis is where music continues to flourish.
Memphis music will reward your expectations. But, don't think that's all there is. A second look at Memphis reveals cultural and recreational offerings of surprising diversity; museums and historical tours, a zoo that delights, a riverfront that soothes, and attractions that appeal to the entire family. There are antique stores, outlet shopping, and malls that offer a full spectrum of things to buy.
Don't forget our food; barbecue, home cooking, fine dining, American classics, Southwest spice, Asian influences, and great burgers. Genuine Southern-style hospitality is available citywide, offering friendly sightseeing, recreation, sports, easy weather and easy access.
Barbecue by any other name...
There is a strong indication that the word "barbecue" comes from the Spanish word barbacoa which is derived from an American Indian word for the framework of green wood on which meat or fish was cooked over a pit of coals. Others believe that the French should be credited -- when Caribbean pirates came stateside, they roasted animals barbe-a-queue, head to tail, so to speak.
The passions generated by this gutsy American dish, no matter how you spell it, are for real although hardly anyone agrees just what barbecue is all about. The answer is far from clear cut and depends on how you define barbecue. To some it means a spicy sauce, to others a cooking style; then there are those who say it's a drippy meat concoction, and to anyone with a backyard it's a festive outdoor party!
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