Sushi can be served on a truck and mine is a lot fresher than some restaurants.
The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is sharpen my knife.
A lot of credit to goes to my mom & my sister. I wouldn't be where I am without them.
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1. Catherine & Mary's , Memphis, TN (Downtown)

Catherine & Mary’s is an Italian concept from James Beard-nominated chefs Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman. Named after Ticer and Hudman's Sicilian- and Tuscan-born grandmothers, the restaurant features regional Italian food with a Tennessee bent, like rigatoni with gravy and meatballs. The cocktail menu is no different, with a number of aperitivos and spritzes, as well as (unsurprisingly) an Italian-leaning wine list.

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2. The Second Line 2144 Monroe Ave, Memphis, TN 38104 (Midtown)

As the casual cousin of Chef Kelly English's Restaurant Iris, The Second Line offers up simple, authentic New Orleans fare: think juicy roast beef po' boys with bread delivered fresh from NOLA as well as heaping trays of fried seafood, crawfish pimento cheese fries, "fancy ass cole slaw," and Natchitoches meat pies, and herb-infused cocktails.

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3. Restaurant Iris 2146 Monroe Ave, Memphis, TN 38104 (Midtown)

Restaurant Iris specializes in French-Creole cuisine that showcases local and seasonal ingredients, and because of this (and the size -- there are only 13 tables), Kelly English's crown jewel is one of the busiest restaurants in town. The atmosphere is cozy and romantic, and the food is decadent and filling. The menu changes with the seasons, but mainstays like Rod Bailey's Raviolo and the "Surf and Turf" of New York Strip (it's stuffed with fried oysters and blue cheese) are bucket list material.

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4. Tsunami 928 S Cooper St, Memphis, TN 38104 (Cooper Young)

Ben Smith's Pacific Rim-inspired menu is so beloved that he just can't bring himself to change it. (The sea bass isn't going anywhere, ever.) Because of this, he creates a daily small plates menu to keep things new and exciting. The rotating dishes include items like sake steamed mussels in Thai red curry sauce and Barramundi with pineapple stir fry. While grabbing a table is always a safe move, this is a great place for solo dining; grab a seat at the bar (designed by Smith's wife, Colleen), have a few drinks, and try several of the dishes.

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5. Erling Jensen 1044 S Yates Rd, Memphis, TN 38119

Chef Erling Jensen knows what fine dining looks like, and he takes every measure to ensure his vision matches your expectations at his East Memphis restaurant. The servers are uniformed, the white tablecloths pressed, and the clientele upscale. Erling Jensen is kind of restaurant you bring people you want to impress -- and the kind of restaurant where entrées like racks of lamb, Dover sole, and Buffalo tenderloin are all upwards of $40. If you have room left over, splurge on the chef's signature dessert, Maker's Mark-infused chocolate soufflé.

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