Thursday, May 13, 2010

"Q" Marks the Spot

Posted By on Thu, May 13, 2010 at 10:32 AM


“Memphis has made its reputation on barbecue. It’s an indigenous phenomenon,” says Peter Calandruccio.

Calandruccio is publisher of the recently released Memphis Q, a Handy Map of sorts to the area’s barbecue restaurants, subtitled “Your Complete Directory to the Joints That Make Memphis THE BAR-B-Q CAPITAL of the Universe.”

Calandruccio spent four months traveling around the county gathering addresses and taking pictures of 72 restaurants both celebrated and obscure. The book includes a fold-out map with each restaurant marked by a number that refers to the restaurant’s corresponding page in Memphis Q.


Each restaurant’s page features an inset map, a photo, phone number, the address, and, smartly, the cross streets. What the page does not feature is any type of commentary. That’s by design, Calandruccio says, noting that it’s his way of saying, “Here they are. Go try it.”


Calandruccio is a semi-retired architect, so design, in fact, plays a part in both Memphis Q’s size and content. The book is about six inches high and 3 inches wide, which makes it easy enough to stash in a car’s glove compartment or the door pocket. Calandruccio also kept the project from getting out of hand by limiting the physical scope to within Shelby County.

Calandruccio has launched a website,, in conjunction with Memphis Q, where he hopes to expand the project and maybe include customer reviews.

By the way, this barbecue book publisher refuses to disclose his favorite place, and when asked about one particular restaurant, he admits he hasn’t tried all 72 mentioned in Memphis Q.

“I’d be dead,” he explains.

Memphis Q is $7 and can be purchased through



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