The owner, Randy Stockard, is moving to a new location on Park Avenue, but he does not know when. His business is among others like Yum’s Chinese Sub Shop and Whatever’s that are also being forced to move because of development of the property at Highland Street and Southern Avenue.
What makes the Southern Meat Market different is that the butchers cut the meat by hand. Most grocery stores have their own deli department equipped with a slicer, which is how most people today get their meat.
Willie Green, a local University District resident, has been buying his steaks and ribs from there for five years. Green previously worked at Corky’s Ribs & BBQ and says that the meat from the Southern Meat Market is better than Corky’s.
“He’s got some of the best meat around,” Green said. “I don’t care where he moves to because I’m still going to get my meat from him.”
The 54-year-old Stockard has customers from all over from Arkansas to Louisiana who come to try some of his fine-cut meat. Stockard also previously owned a place called Poor Red’s in the 1980s. It was a restaurant lounge where Memphis music could be heard and that existed from 1976-1993. Musicians like Fleetwood Mac, Albert King, and B.B. King are just some of the big names that played there.
Poor Red’s was bought out in 1993 by Burger King, which forced him to relocate.
Stockard is very much into music as evident by his Elvis Presley portraits to a shiny white guitar that is so brilliantly displayed for all his customers to marvel at. Along with that, The Southern Meat Market has a wide variety of meats. From beef, pork, lamb, and veal, he has it all.
Customers can almost feel the drool about to fall from their mouths as they gaze upon all the fresh meat.
“My most popular is T-bones and rib eyes,” Stockard said. His shop is also filled with a healthy collection of animals on the wall from deer to ducks.
“We do deer processing, and we clean about 500 to 600 deer a year that come through here.”
Growing up in Memphis, living in the Whitehaven area, Stockard encountered someone of legendary status who lived very close to him.
“I grew up right around the corner from Elvis,” Stockard said. “I went to high school with his step-brother.”
His business was also one of the first 10 ads ever to be advertised by the Memphis Flyer in the 80’s. His building has a lot of rich history as it dates all the way back to the late 1800s and all the original things in the shop like the meat hooks, scales, and the smokehouse are still operational.