KATY (Covering Katy News) – Barbeque is prepared in a variety of ways, and much depends on the section of the USA where it is being cooked. If you love Memphis style barbeque then you’ve probably been to Corky’s. Now there is a Corky’s Ribs and BBQ on the Katy Freeway (east) at Greenhouse Road. Owners Bruce Gingrich and Andria Cain opened their doors yesterday and Covering Katy was there.
There were numerous people who are familiar with Corky’s in Memphis who were there for lunch, shortly after the doors opened at 11 a.m. One of them was Tammy Fletcher who has been living in Katy for 20 years but remembers growing up eating Corky’s barbeque in Memphis. She was giddy with excitement after enjoying lunch at Corky’s on Wednesday.
“This is my favorite barbeque place in Memphis. It always has been,” Fletcher told Covering Katy.
“When I saw this place opened in Katy I was equal parts anxious and excited because this is home. This is my home food,” she said.
Like What You're Reading?
Fletcher was concerned that she’d be disappointed if the Katy location did not live up to what she’s become accustomed to when she returns home to visit relatives in Memphis. She was not disappointed.
“It’s dead on, it tastes exactly like Memphis,” she said.
She said what makes Memphis barbeque different from Texas barbeque is the sauce and the meat.
“It’s completely different because it’s pork,” she said. “The sauce is completely different because it’s sweet and smokey. So, this really does taste different than any other barbeque that’s here in Texas which is why I’ve been so excited.”
Fletcher also recommends new customers try a menu item that you won’t find at a traditional Texas barbecue restaurant.
“There is a pork and spaghetti plate. The spaghetti is amazing. There is pork on one side and spaghetti on the other side,” Fletcher said.
Corky’s world-famous barbecue meals include ribs, slow-cooked over hickory and charcoal basted in the signature Corky’s BBQ sauce. They also serve brisket, pulled pork, and chicken.
In addition to their meat plates, they offer a number of delicious sides including BBQ beans, coleslaw, southern green beans, and mac and cheese.
There is also a list of homemade dessert favorites including fudge pie, pecan pie, brownies, and peach cobbler.
Don Pelts, Tricia Woodman’s father, opened the original Corky’s in 1984. Now there are four corporate-owned locations in Memphis, two franchise locations in Tennessee and two franchise locations in Little Rock.
“This is our first of hopefully a slew of locations in Texas,” Woodman told Covering Katy. “We’ve got a great franchise group that already has about five sites ready to go,” she added.
There is a drive-through window at the Katy location too. Woodman says the drive through drives revenues.
“At our stores in Memphis, 50 percent of our business comes from our drive-through window,” she said. “It’s a great thing for people driving home from work, just zip in and order.”
The Katy location has an updated look from the original location, but the big, colorful Corky’s bottle cap mural is one feature that you will find in Katy too.
“Going forward every one of our stores will have one,” Woodman said of the mural that spells out Corky’s name.
Corky’s is located in a building formerly utilized by Outback Steakhouse. The interior will be unrecognizable for anyone who visited the former Outback location. It’s brighter, has a more open interior, and ice house style overhead doors have been added at the bar which allows customers to sit at an outside bar while enjoying a drink. There are more than 20 beers on tap and more than 50 premium bourbons at the full-service bar.
“My dad would literally be smiling from heaven to see what Bruce and Andria have done here,” Woodman said of the interior look and feel of the Katy location.
“We are excited to be expanding to the great state of Texas and serving our award-winning, Memphis-style barbecue,” Cain said. “Corky’s sleek and cozy atmosphere makes for a lively happy hour, complete with live music and a full-service bar, specializing in top-notch bourbon drinks,” Gingrich said.
“Most importantly we’re open beyond traditional evening hours, so our guests can enjoy the Katy nightlife without missing a beat,” Cain added.
Texas CMA Artist of the Year and Katy-born singer-songwriter Carrie Marie will perform at Corkey’s on Friday, Feb. 8.
The restaurant is open seven days a week. Hours are 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday.
For more information about Corky’s in Katy, visit https://www.corkysbbq.com/locations/katy.
See additional photos below.