Monday, January 30, 2017

Off the Map: After All That, They're Buying a Sprite?

Pork Rib Tips -- Tom's Barbeque and Deli, Memphis, TN
Tom's Barbeque and Deli

The good thing about venturing to Tom's Barbeque and Deli for Guy Fieri's Best Thing I Ever Ate GRILLED pork rib tips is that at least they're not fried chicken. The bad news about it is that we're still trying to digest our FIVE different pork dishes from the day before.
Please Be Gentle on Us, Tom
To say we're not hungry upon entering Tom's would be an understatement, which leads to yet another awkward conversation between Vodka and the workers, when they are flummoxed as to why we wouldn't want more food.
Please Allow Us to Show You Our Five-Page Color-Coded Itinerary, and Maybe You'll Understand
"Can we get the pork rib tips?"
"How much?"
"What's the least amount I can order?"
"How many of you?"
"How about a pound?"
"Oh no, that's too much."
"A half pound? But you wouldn't get many each."
"Can we do a quarter pound?"
"Then you'll only get a taste."
"That's what we want, a taste."
"Then I'll just give you a taste."
"Oh... okay."
It's Like the Who's on First of BBQ Pork Tip Conversations
Vodka is then handed a plate with three strips of charred meat and an accompanying side of barbeque sauce, which she dutifully brings to the cashier.

"That's on the house!" one of the workers manning the grill shouts.

Free?! Oh no. Now we have to give them 5 stars.
Or At Least We'll Pretend It's 5 Stars Until We Leave
Assembling at one of the tables, which seem suspiciously like pieces bought half-price at a lawn furniture sale, it takes us a while to figure out how to consume said rib tips. 
Deck Furniture Without the Deck
The bones themselves are doused with a generous helping of dry rub, with just the barest amount of meat visible on each piece. 
Okay, Soooo... How Do We Eat This?
We eventually figure out how to pull the sections apart and begin dunking it in the sauce before scraping the meat off with our teeth. 
Now We Understand the Toothbrush Machine Stationed at the Exit
On the one hand, we find the tips a good alternative to ribs themselves, which often seem like too heavy a meal to consume on their own. But on the other hand, they're just not that great. 
Also, Even Without All of the Other Bones We've Chewed on Today, They're Not That Appetizing to Look At
Diet Coke takes all of one bite, Vodka takes about five, while Whiskey Sour, never one to turn down a free meal, takes care of the rest. The workers circle around every once in a while to get our thoughts, and considering this is the first meal in nearly 250 blog entries that we have been given for free (that is, without complaining to the management first), we would give the service itself a solid 5 stars.

We just can't be that generous toward their rib tips.
Call Us Ungrateful, but We Have Our Standards
In the end, Diet Coke gets up to purchase a Sprite, and we assume that the staff at Tom's is judging us heavily. But because people in Memphis are kinder than we are, they keep their mouths shut, and accept a plate full of empty rib tips as their only payment.

Tom's Barbeque and Deli's Pork Rib Tips: 3 stars

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