G oing back over almost four decades, the editorial staff of Memphis magazine has produced more “guides” than can be imagined. We’ve done dining guides, fitness guides, home improvement guides, travel guides to just about every place within driving distance, even a few pet guides, and of course (since 1984) the mother of all Memphis guides, our annual “City Guide.” We even published the market’s first-ever Best of Memphis guide back in 1991 (see inset), before we loaned the concept to our then-fledging sister publication, the Memphis Flyer. The Flyer staff last month celebrated its own twentieth-anniversary “Best of Memphis” issue. I don’t think they’re giving the franchise back anytime soon. This issue’s cover story is for us something new in the guide department, however; it’s a holiday gift guide like no other we’ve ever done. And we’re so confident that readers will embrace it that we’ve gone ahead and labeled this month’s major feature as our “First Annual Homegrown Holiday Gift Guide.” Obviously, this particular venture is a reflection of just how powerful a force the “Think Local” movement has become in modern American culture in general and in contemporary Memphis in particular. Producing this feature was an exciting task — a voyage of discovery, as it were — for our entire editorial staff. Each of the forty-odd items shown here was selected independent of any advertising consideration; each and every one proudly bears the stamp “Made in Memphis.” At a time when so much of our country’s once-formidable manufacturing base has moved off-shore, we are pleased to offer this modest counterpoint, a tribute to those among us who truly “make things happen” in the Mid-South. Thanks to all whose products are featured here.
This 2014 shopping list, of course, is by no means all-inclusive. Feel free to let us know if there’s an item produced locally that you think we should consider for inclusion in next year’s homegrown gift guide.
Speaking of features that come around regularly here at Memphis magazine, November is traditionally the calendar month that we devote to running our Readers’ Restaurant Poll online; you can check out all the details of this year’s poll on page 57. Or better yet, just go to memphismagazine.com anytime between November 1st and November 30th, and cast your ballot for your favorites. The results will be published, as always, in our 2015 Dining Guide issue next February.
Over the years, ours has become the city’s definitive dining poll, the gold standard, as it were, of the Memphis marketplace. No similar survey reflects as clearly as ours what the “foodies” among our readers really think of the Memphis dining scene. Voting is strictly monitored to minimize ballot stuffing, and again, no advertising consideration is involved in the determination of the category winners. So vote early, but don’t try to vote often!
One final note — and yes, this is a blatant advertisement. No holiday gift guide issue would be complete without our reminding readers to consider what we think is one of the best “made in Memphis” gifts around, namely this magazine. A $15 one-year subscription to Memphis is truly a gift that keeps on giving, twelve times a year.
Thanks to all our regular readers and advertisers, whose support over the years has enabled this particular city magazine to establish a national reputation as one of the best in the country. We’re deeply thankful for that kind of support, and we wish you all very best wishes for this holiday season!