Chicago to Memphis - stops along the way?

Big T
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2011/03/30 15:49:56 (permalink)

Chicago to Memphis - stops along the way?

I'm surprised this route hasn't been discussed before, but I couldn't find it using the search function. I am driving down to Memphis from Chicago for a long weekend in May (not going during the BBQ championships as hotel rooms were all booked up that weekend). Anyway, the drive is about 8 or 9 hours (a little longer if you take I-55 through St. Louis). I am looking for somewhere to stop along the way, ideally about halfway through the trip to stop for lunch on the way down and then somewhere to stop on the way back.
It looks like I can take I-57 all the way down, or the longer route of I-55 to go through St. Louis. I'm not too particular on which route I take, we aren't that pressed for time, so if there is a must-hit spot along I-55 I would consider it. Anyone have any ideas? Thanks!

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    Filet Mignon
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    Re:Chicago to Memphis - stops along the way? 2011/03/30 19:27:08 (permalink)
    I'm not a big fan of buffet meals but I can 100% recommend the Amishland Red Barn buffet on I-57 in Tuscola, Ill. You get off (I believe) at Route 36. It's behind a big outlet mall, The Tangier Outlet Mall.

    I didn't expect much at all given its location but each and every item was delicious. Our waitress (she brings you water and your beverage and cleans up) said not to miss the fried chicken and I was very glad she mentioned that. GREAT chicken and we were there fairly late in the lunch hour. Save room for dessert(s). In 25 years of taking either I-55 or I-57 to Memphis, this was easily our all time favorite stop. Be prepared to walk through a selection of Amish furniture to get to the restaurant.
    We sometimes take I-39 to Springfield and there are some great BPT and Horseshoe stops but these would not be on your route.
    IF you took I-55 (and I wouldn't ) a stop at the Ariston Cafe in Litchfield on Historic Route 66 is probably your best bet. Very cool with some great dishes; I'd have a horseshoe for sure.

    post edited by MilwFoodlovers - 2011/03/30 19:31:24
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    Re:Chicago to Memphis - stops along the way? 2011/03/31 11:31:44 (permalink)

    We sometimes take I-39 to Springfield and there are some great BPT and Horseshoe stops but these would not be on your route.

    I-39 ends in Bloomington-Normal and from there I-55 runs to Springfield.
    Iporcinis, Roadfood member Dr. of BBQ operates a barbecue trailer in Springfield and the Illinois capital also has the Cozy Drive-Inn.  Per the Dr.'s recommendation a couple of years ago I had some good thin-crust pizza at Top Cat.
    I'll second the suggestion for a stop at the Ariston.
    post edited by ScreamingChicken - 2011/03/31 11:32:45
    Double Cheeseburger
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    Re:Chicago to Memphis - stops along the way? 2011/04/01 15:41:05 (permalink)
    The best BBQ in Memphis, TN can be found at A & R. BBQ Shop, Central, Rendezvous, Cozy Corner, Interstate, Neely's, One and Only and Payne's.
    A & R Bar B Que @ 1802 Elvis Presley Blvd., Memphis, TN. 901 - 774 - 7444.
    BBQ Shop @ 1782 Madison Ave., Memphis, TN. 901 - 272 - 1277.
    Central BBQ @ 2249 Central Ave., Memphis, TN. 901 - 272 - 9377.
    Charlie Vergo's Rendezvous @ 52 S. Second St., Memphis, TN. 901 - 523 - 2746.
    Cozy Corner @ 745 N. Parkway, Memphis, TN. 901 - 527 - 9158.
    Interstate BBQ @ 2265 S. Third St., Memphis, TN. 901 - 775 - 2304.
    Neely's BBQ @ 670 Jefferson St., Memphis, TN. 901 - 521 - 9798.
    One and Only BBQ @ 1779 Kirby Pkwy., Memphis, TN 901 - 751 - 3615.
    Paynes BBQ @ 1762 Lamar Ave., Memphis, TN. 901 - 272 - 1523.
    The BBQ Shop and One and Only are my favorites but Payne's is famous for their pulled pork sandwich.
    Incidentally Interstate BBQ in Southaven, MS just reopened after a huge renovation.
    Interstate BBQ @ 150 Stateline Road W, Southaven, MS. 662 - 393 - 5699.
    Germantown Commissary is outstanding if you get out E.
    Germantown Commissary @ 2290 S. Germantown Rd., Germantown, TN. 901 - 754 - 5549.
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