205 Beale St
Memphis, TN 38103
Dyer’s Burgers is Memphis institution that is famous for (of course) burgers. Legend has it the burgers served here are cooked in 100 year old grease. People tend to have strong opinions as to weather or not the burgers are actually good, probably because the patties are very thin and the standard commercially produced bun used becomes a greasy mess. Personally, I love the Dyer’s burger! I don’t eat bread so I always get mine without the bun. I like the triple triple; three patties, and three slices of cheese. I eat with a fork. Yes, it’s greasy, but that’s what makes it so good!
A while back, during one of my many visits to Dyer’s, I sat next to a uniformed cop who ordered wings for his dinner. His basket full of whole wings looked and smelled great. He told me that Dyer’s had some of the best wings in town and that I should give them a try. As a general rule, I feel that cops always know where to go for good food. If I see cop cars parked at a restaurant on a regular basis, I treat it as an indication that food and service are both good. My mother taught me this a long time ago and over the years I have been disappointed by the cops exactly once. This weekend I got the opportunity to see if this cop knew what he was talking about.
I went to Dyer’s late Friday afternoon on a solo wing-eating mission. I took a seat at the bar and looked at the menu. At Dyer’s you can order 5 wings for $7.99 or 10 wings for 14.99. Combos with fries are also available. The wings are served hot or mild with dressing and a roll, no celery. I ordered 5 wings, hot, with blue cheese. Interestingly, the menu lists honey mustard as a dressing option. Really? Honey mustard on a hot wing?
One of the things I like about Dyer’s is being able to watch as your order is prepared. The entire kitchen is directly on the other side of the bar, much like a Waffle House. Just in case you were wondering, the wings are not cooked in the 100 year old burger grease. They are cooked in a standard industrial grease hopper and then tossed with sauce in a giant Tupperware-type container.
I was a little disappointed when I realized that I wasn’t getting whole wings. I guess they were out of whole wings because I was served 10 wing sections instead. My disappointment quickly faded. Whole or not, the sauce was great! I could tell that it was a custom blend and not just some sauce out of a bottle. I asked what was in the sauce and this is what I was told, “Franks, chipotle, honey, jalapenos, and Italian dressing.” The combination of flavors was pretty outstanding. The heat took a while to build intensity and hours later my lips where still burning a bit. Normally, I would balk at honey (sugar) in hot wings sauce, but in this case there was just enough honey cut the heat without making the sauce sticky or sweet. The cop was right, I really enjoyed these wings.