An old Memphis landmark belongs to New Orleans now.
Leaving New Orleans is hard, but Fly on the Wall has a tip for Memphians returning from the Crescent City.
Enjoy your last meal at the High Hat Cafe.
It's a terrific little place where space folds creating a full convergence of Memphis and New Orleans. Catfish is the star on a menu
showcasing Delta tamales, all kinds of house-made pickles, barbecue shrimp, and some of the best pimento cheese (and pimento cheese grits!) your pimento cheese-loving Fly on the Wall has ever landed on. The Uptown diner's crowning glory: The old Cecil's Hi-Hat sign hangs above the bar.
Cecil's was a Memphis joint on the stretch of Somerville connecting Linden to Peabody. The building, which burned a few years back, was located next to the old Linden Circle movie theater an
d one-time home of the Mid-South Opry. The faded sign hung outside the abandoned site for many years. It was eventually acquired by Grove Grill co-founder Chip Apperson
who partnered with NOLA restauranteur Adolfo Garcia to open the High Hat Cafe in June, 2011.
A last (NOLA) meal at the High Hat functions like a culinary and cultural air lock. You can have a last cup of legit gumbo with a basket of similarly legit cornbread. Heresy? Absolutely. But sometimes heresy is every bit as delicious as a proper baguette.
We went for the flat-top catfish, a watermelon and crab salad, a fat-stacked Reuben sandwich, and delta tamales, with an appetizer plate full of deviled ham, deviled eggs, pimento cheese, and spicy pickled okra. It was a perfect way to say goodbye to a city famous for its food and return to a city that's no slouch in that regard, either.