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Memphis on Main Street Boasts Authentic Barbecue

Offering authentic Memphis-style barbecue, Memphis on Main Street has long list of mouth-watering dishes.

It's officially summer, and nothing complements the summer months like a generous dose of smoky barbecue.

So, along with a team of tasters, I made my way to Reisterstown's new spot for 'Q, (35 Main Street). It is formerly Micho's Restaurant, an upscale restaurant, bar and lounge with a Mediterranean-influenced menu.

Changing up its menu , the space is still reminiscent of Micho's, a style that is somewhat discordant with the down-home atmosphere in which one would expect to chow down on pulled pork and fries.

But the staff was welcoming and friendly, and the server was attentive. The food took some time, which is to be expected of the kitchen staff of a newly opened restaurant, but once I got my food, my doubts were laid to rest.

Memphis-style barbecue is notable that its signature isn't sauce. Instead, Memphis barbecue mavens flavor their meats with dry rubs, often a mix of paprika, garlic, salt, onion, oregano, chili powder and black pepper. Memphis on Main Street stayed true to this style, but also offered a homemade barbecue sauce as well as items cooked in different styles, like that of Texas.

I was tempted to try an appetizer like the fried green tomatoes ($5.95) or the Memphis rolls ($5.95), pulled beef, chicken or pork barbecue fried in spring roll-form. I was also pleased to see that Memphis on Main Street has paid homage to its Maryland home, offering traditional Maryland crab dip ($10.95) and Maryland crab soup ($4.95 cup/$6.95 bowl).

But I was hungry and ready to get to the main event. I opted for a half slab of the Memphis ribs ($13.95), dry-rubbed and slow-cooked in a smoker. I requested that my ribs be brought out smothered in the homemade barbecue sauce, a bottle of which can be found at each table.

The meat was falling off the bone, and the sauce was delightfully peppery and tangy. Though it was a half rack, I had trouble finishing the large portion because of the delicious side dishes I chose -- french fries and cole slaw.

I was also full because I take my reviewing duties seriously and sampled everyone else's dishes and sides. The Memphis barbecue beans were a nice alternative to regular baked beans with their kick of spice, and the mashed red-skinned potatoes were buttery and addictive.

Next time, however, I know I need to order one of the barbecue sandwiches. Served on a Kaiser roll with pickles, both the original pit beef ($7.95) and the Memphis pulled chicken ($7.95) had the distinct flavor of the dry rub as well as a savory helping of barbecue sauce. My bite of each of these was mouthwatering, and I was left wanting more. My only complaint is that the side dishes only come with the platters, and so to get fries with your pit beef sandwich, you have to pay an extra $1.95. And really, who wouldn't want fries accompanying pit beef?

But overall, the service was outstanding and the homemade touches gave Memphis on Main Street a pleasing and authentic flavor.

ZIG June 08, 2011 at 11:29 AM
Visited once about 2 weeks ago. Menu was only 2 pages. Soda was flat. waited an excssive amount of time to have food order taken. We left without ordering. Very poorly run.
Joe Schmo June 08, 2011 at 12:26 PM
This place SUCKS!
Ricky June 08, 2011 at 12:30 PM
I have to say, I have had carry out and ate in restaurant once. The food AND service were excellent! The restaurant, once you enter, was quite amazing with the eat in area, bar area, and outside seating. The outside seating was small and unnfortunately "smoking" allowed. But, we were informed of this prior to out chosing to be in the open and really did not present a problem. The owner and his staff were very friendly and try to attend to any issues quickly.
Chris Kessler June 08, 2011 at 12:51 PM
Joe Schmo must be Bill Bateman
Kevin June 09, 2011 at 03:43 PM
I've been thinking about going, but Ricky's review is the first positive review i've heard or read. Any one else enjoy their experience? I really want this place to be good and last!
Chris Kessler June 09, 2011 at 05:17 PM
Great food with nice portions and a friendly staff.

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