Midtown Tastes: Sweet Potato Fries

Posted on June 1, 2014

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By Kelsey Young
cupMy first introduction to the Memphis food scene was Huey’s on Poplar. I recently moved to Memphis and was looking to get to know more about the city, and what better way to do that than by immersing myself in a Memphis food staple like Huey’s?

More memorable than the delicious burger I had were Huey’s sweet potato fries. Coming from the Midwest, I had tried sweet potatoes at barbeque places a few times, but I was never a huge fan. Those Huey’s fries, however, changed my opinion on sweet potato fries.

Now as a fan of sweet potato fries, I present the face-off: Huey’s sweet potato fries versus Young Avenue sweet potato fries, both classic Midtown restaurants. Upon walking in Huey’s Midtown location on Madison Avenue, Blues music played over the speakers while toothpicks covered the ceiling overhead. It’s a casual atmosphere with customers ranging from a family sitting a few tables over to college students on the other side of the room. My food arrived with the friesMadison Avenue burger and sweet potato fries. The fries came in waffle-fry style, a fried, burnt orange color. The fries themselves are simple as no salts covers the fries. One bite initially supplies a nice crunch which eventually gives way to the sweetness of the sweet potato. Huey’s pairs the fries with a spicy chipotle ranch sauce. The spicy flavor supplies a nice kick to the otherwise pleasingly sweet fries.

A few nights later, I tried the fries available at Young Avenue Deli in the Cooper-Young neighborhood. The restaurant is housed in a spacious loft building, with a bar, pool tables, and a stage for music performances. When my pita
wrap and fires arrived, the sweet potato fries were a bright orange exactly like the inside of a sweet potato. The fries were flat and thin with a crispy exterior with cinnamon sugar sprinkled on top. Instantly after that first bite, the sweet potato taste is noticeable. But Young Avenue Deli serves the ultimate companion to the fries: honey mustard. The tangy sauce does not overpower the flavor, but compliments the sweet fries. hueys_fries

Although Huey’s fries also have a great sauce for dipping, the tangy honey mustard sauce at Young Avenue Deli and their packed fries prove the ultimate match and the ultimate choice for sweet potato fries. But for those who are a fan of spicy sauces, Huey’s sweet potato waffle fries with the chipotle ranch sauce are recommended.

Regardless of your preference, Memphis is in no shortage of exceptional sweet potato fries, and Huey’s and Young Avenue Deli are essential spots to check out this summer.

Kelsey Young is an English major at Rhodes College.

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Posted in: Lifestyle