Hernando, Mississippi, may feel small and sleepy, but this burgeoning foodie destination is well worth the short drive from Memphis. If you don’t believe me, check out Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives host Guy Fieri, who visited Hernando earlier this year to cook with Chef Chris Lee at Memphis Street Café. The episode airs tonight at 9 p.m. on the Food Network.
During his visit, Fieri sampled the restaurant’s Reuben and chicken salad, but he filmed the café’s banana foster, a scrumptious stand-out dessert made with banana nut bread French toast and homemade ginger and vanilla bean ice cream. Desserts change regularly at this simple but excellent American café, located in a renovated basement eatery off Hernando’s historic town square. Sandwiches and entrees are more consistent, offering a simple but delicious mix of European home-cooking and deli-style sandwiches. Everything on the menu is priced under $10.
We visited Memphis Street Café for the first time on a hot summer day, and the restaurant’s polished cement floors and pale yellow walls were an appreciated respite. Once we cooled off, I dug into Lee’s hearty catfish Po-Boy topped with some of the best
house-made remoulade I’ve ever eaten. Tony ordered the blackened chicken and grits, an overflowing bowl of chicken breast pieces simmered in garlic cream, grilled peppers, stewed tomatoes, and Cajun spices. He carried half of the dish home.
In addition to visiting Memphis Street Café, the gregarious star of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives filmed an episode at Memphis Barbecue Company in Horn Lake. Last month, Jason Roberts of ABC’s The Chew also filmed a show, according to the restaurant’s Facebook page. No word yet on when either episode will air.
In Memphis, Fieri filmed episodes at The Elegant Farmer, South of Beale, Three Angels Diner, and Rizzos Diner. The episode with chef Michael Patrick at Rizzos Diner is scheduled for August 20 at 9 p.m. Leslee Pascal at Elegant Farmer says to expect their episode in November, although the date could change. Air dates for Three Angels Diner and South of Beale have not been announced.
Memphis Street Cafe, 2476 Memphis St., Hernando (662) 429-9299