Andy's Rest. Scorecard: Little Tea Shop - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Andy's Rest. Scorecard: Little Tea Shop

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By Andy Wise - bio | email

MEMPHIS (WMC-TV) - The health department's computers that tabulate restaurant inspection scores are down. The state's private contract for that service expired, and health officials are still in negotiations to figure out who will take it over.

So this week and next week, Action News 5 will not be able to post a link to the list of the latest inspections, but be assured, we have access to each and every report.

In fact, this week, there are no failing restaurants. Our top 3 High Scores:

* Subway, 6415 Summer/Elmore, near Bartlett, TN:  98

* Pizza Hut Delivery, 574 Erin, White Station Area/East Memphis:  98

* Gigi's Cupcakes, 4709 Poplar, White Station Area/East Memphis:  98

THIS WEEK'S BIG TIP:  The Little Tea Shop, 69 Monroe Ave., Downtown Memphis, 901-525-6000

The oldest restaurant downtown, The Little Tea Shop celebrates its 92nd anniversary.

In 1982, Suhair Lauck (everyone's "Ms. Sue") and her husband Jimmy bought the place from its second owner on one condition:  keep its century-old tradition of fresh vegetables, entrees and faces!

"For 28 years, they've been eating with me," boasted Lauck. "Nobody in the city does it like us."

"Ms. Sue" greets everyone like family, and the shop looks like the family dining room. She's plastered the walls with framed pictures of everybody from local and national celebrities to three generations of The Little Tea Shop's best customers.

"Everything about this place is perfect," said Emily Dreifus. Now a Massachusetts resident, the Memphis native is the third generation of her family to enjoy a "Lacy Special" or the turnip greens. Her grandfather started Dreifus Jewelers (now Reed Jewelers) downtown in the 1930s.

"He ate here every single day for lunch, and my dad worked there for 40 years and ate here almost every day," Dreifus said.

"It wasn't EVERY day," chimed her father Jed. "But it was three or four days a WEEK." Point taken, Mr. Dreifus!

The Little Tea Shop is also the place for the power lunch.

"You glance around, and there's all manner of politicians and lawyers and judges and city officials," said Memphis attorney Pam Blair.

"The good food and conversation, the bread is fantastic, and I just enjoy meeting the folks downtown," said Memphis City Councilman Jim Strickland.

"If my mother made cornbread as well as Ms. Sue does, I would have never left home," said former Memphis City Councilman Jack Sammons.

WHAT ANDY LIKES:  Lacy Special (baked chicken & cornbread) W/Turnip Greens & Yams, Stuffed Avocado W/Shrimp Salad, Grilled Chicken Chef Salad, Couscous Salad W/Salmon, Chicken Salad, Tuna Salad, Peach Or Apple Cobbler 

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