Music and food are both known to nourish the soul. In Tupelo, you can find both at a number of venues where you can feel the beat while filling your belly. Whether you’re looking for a casual night out sampling Italian fare with acoustic melodies in the background, a downhome atmosphere filled with fried foods and fun country tunes or an adventure of original, genre-spanning music with a just-as-adventurous meal as the opener, Tupelo has it for you.
We’ve broken down some of our music venues that are serving up amazing food so you’ll be able to feel the beat and fill your belly all in one place!
The Blue Canoe
The Blue Canoe has a laid-back atmosphere that quickly comes to life whenever a band takes the stage. The likes of Gary Clark Jr., Sturgill Simpson, and the Alabama Shakes have graced this venue on their way to becoming superstars, and, on any given night, you’re likely to find your next favorite band playing there. Depending on which night you walk in the door, you could hear rock, country, jazz, soul, funk, and rap wafting off the stage.
We recommend you come for the food and stick around for the show, though, because the food is incredibly good. The Canoe’s menu features items like a bacon-wrapped meatloaf poboy, a Nashville-hot style soft-shell crab sandwich, a duck quesadilla, great burgers, and the famous Connie’s blueberry donut bread pudding dessert. You’ll leave here with a full stomach and a new song for your playlist every time.
Forklift, located on Jackson Avenue in a residential neighborhood, is one of Tupelo’s newest restaurants that’s quickly becoming a local favorite. At Forklift, they pride themselves on making “innovative, beautiful, flavorful, from scratch food using local vendors.” Like the red snapper dish pictured above, you can always expect beautifully crafted and delicious dishes at this new-American joint. Forklift’s specialty cocktails are also some of the best around!
Forklift does so much more than just food, though. For a more casual music atmosphere, head to Forklift for dinner on Tuesdays and Fridays, where you’ll find a great acoustic act to compliment your chicken piccata and honeysuckle-infused vodka cocktail.
Nautical Whimsey, known for its authentic Italian dishes and huge serving of lasagna, is an excellent downtown venue for music as well. Come in for delicious, homecooked Italian dishes like stuffed ravioli or eggplant parmesan and enjoy the casual cover music while you eat, Fridays and Saturdays from 7-11 p.m. The music at Nautical Whimsey ends after dinner so you can jump to another late-night live music venue and enjoy the rest of your evening with even more tunes!
The owners tout Romie’s Grocery as the place to “put a little South in ya mouth!” Romie’s Grocery has offered down-home cooking on Jackson Street for over 12 years now, dishing up one of the best meat-and-three lunches in town and offering unique southern-styled dinner specials weekly. While offering up excellent southern cuisine would be enough, you can find live music on Romie’s back patio every Friday and Saturday from 8:30 p.m. to midnight. Romie’s hosts everything from country cover bands to original rock, blues, and even jazz on occasion. So kick back, enjoy some great home-cookin’ and some tunes on the weekends.
Tucked away in Davis Alley on Spring Street, you’ll find The Stables, a restaurant and bar nestled into an old livery stable that’s been a local favorite and downtown mainstay for many years. Talk to some of the regulars and they’ll tell you The Stables Burger, the menu’s best seller, is the best burger in town, but you would be remiss not to try the Blackened Catfish Nachos. We could try to explain how good these nachos are, but we figured a picture is worth a thousand words, so you can find one below. The Stables brings in a great mix of acoustic rock, folk, country and even some more high-energy electric shows every Friday and Saturday from 9 -12:30 p.m., so bring your curiosity and come see for yourself what makes Stables such a local favorite.
Known as “Tupelo’s Back Porch,” Steele’s Dive serves up excellent southern dishes daily, but the real party can be found out back any night of the week on the 6,000-square-foot patio. With live music Monday through Saturday, no covers ever, and tons of space to hang out in this down-home atmosphere, you’re guaranteed to enjoy some country, rock, funk, blues and everything in between. Spend all night with some of your newest back-porch friends enjoying an oyster po-boy, cold beer, and great music!
The Thirsty Devil
One of downtown’s newest additions, The Thirsty Devil, is a rock ‘n roll bar through and through that’s been making as much noise with its food as it has with its entertainment. Try their pork chop that’s roasted in a brown-sugar rub while perusing their excellent whiskey and scotch collection, or grab a craft beer and a steak quesadilla while the band rocks out on stage.
A fine-dining favorite for over 18 years in Tupelo, Woody’s provides perfectly cooked hand-cut steaks, fresh seafood, and even wild game dishes in this relaxing and casually modern atmosphere. That’s just the dining room. On the other side of the building is Woody’s bar, known for its live music and a lively karaoke night on Thursdays and Saturdays. Come for the fine dining, karaoke, or both at Woody’s. You’ll be sure to leave with a full stomach and your best attempt at that Journey song, yet!
The Courtyard Marriott
For the business traveler looking for a little less traditional music venue, the Courtyard Marriott is the perfect place and our last entry on this list. Grab a bite to eat at the Courtyard Bistro or a coffee at the 24-hour Starbucks inside and enjoy live music performances every Tuesday and Wednesday night from 6 to 8 p.m. Even in our hotels, it’s easy to feel the beat and fill your belly in Tupelo!