In an area that can't get enough of dry rub ribs or the memory of a long-dead Elvis, consider a plate piled high with barbecue nachos.
People at the table next to me ordered them and I stayed around for a viewing, curious to see how the two dishes were paired.
A waitress with a snappy attitude delivered the barbecue nachos and they were what the names implies -- crunchy chips, smoky pulled pork, creamy cheese sauce, spicy pickled jalapenos, savory spices and barbecue sauce made on site.
"We invented them," Walker Taylor bragged. "See that lady in that picture up there. She started it."
Taylor is the effusive owner-operator of The Commissary in Germantown, Tenn. During the lunchtime rush, he herds customers through the tiny entranceway like hogs going to market.
Rosie Mabon, the lady in the photo, worked for him as a waitress at The Commissary when it opened in 1981. Between customers at the concession stand, she piled up a bunch of chips and covered them with pork barbecue.
"Rosie, what is that?" Taylor blurted out.
"Barbecue nachos, fool."
Taylor had just opened by the railroad tracks in historic Germantown. For 90 years it was a general store where you could buy everything from bologna to brogans. His father owned the ramshackle building, and Taylor transformed it into a sit-down barbecue joint.
Barbecue nachos soon became popular with diners in the snobby suburb, but they didn't take the Mid-South by storm until 1998 when baseball fans started lining up for them at Memphis Redbirds games. Now they are as much a part of a Memphis menu as baked beans.
Taylor enjoys the attention. His walls are decorated with autographed photographs of the stars of sports and music. His restaurant has been featured on the Food Network and, in an area where there are more barbecue joints than Starbucks coffee shops, it is frequently ranked among the best.
His dry rub ribs are tasty, but his pulled pork doesn't match the meat we get at 13th Street or Clearview. I especially enjoyed his side dishes, notably the deviled eggs and the onion rings. The Commissary is worth a stop, though parking is impossible.
And I have a novel addition for Country's menu once the summer veggies have all been picked.
Barbecue nachos, fool.
-- Richard Hyatt is an independent correspondent. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.