Gus’s Fried Chicken, Memphis, TN
- 3pc. Dark Meat
- Cole Slaw
- French Fries
- Sweet Tea
- Chess Pie
Geographically speaking, Tennessee is in the south, but just barely; there are states that are much more souther. In fact, most of Tennessee shares the same climate zone as south Jersey. There is an imaginary line that exists somewhere in Virginia that when crossed, American food becomes delicious.
I’m pretty sure if you opened a restaurant in the South that was classified as “Nuveau-American” you’d be pummeled quite thoroughly. The North has a rich food heritage, but it is steeped in ages of immigrant history. Hundreds of years of rag-draped ancestry giving every ounce of energy in their tired, poor, huddled masses has culminated in “Pan-Asian Fusion”. Is this the namesake we choose to leave for our children?
The culinary attention span of we Yankees is that of fish - while on our way to the top-rated zooplankton eatery, crawfishsmopolitan magazine runs an article stating that phytoplankton is better for your complexion.
Enter Gus’s. They take fried chicken, and do nothing spectacular to it - they just make the best fried chicken. The meat, covered in a butter-rich batter that screams “this is why we’re fat”, drips off the bone. Cole slaw tastes like good cole slaw and fries are cooked well done and crispy. The Chess Pie was a warm, gooey, dignified Crème brûlée. I believe in the South, because I’ve eaten at Gus’s.