In 2017 my husband and I missed earning a Southwest Airlines Companion Pass by less than 5000 points, but we learn from our mistakes and double down in 2018 earning that coveted pass while on vacation in July 2018 (how poetic is that). How we did it and what we learned I will save for another post, but that meant for the next 18 months we could travel more and check off some places on our domestic bucket list. One of those places was Nashville. Here is my list of best restaurants from my recent trip to Nashville but I would love to hear what your favorites are so drop me a comment so I can add them to my list.
Bolton’s Spicy Fried Chicken and Fish
Bolton’s has been on my Nashville must-try list since watching the “Fried Chicken” episode of David Change’s Ugly Delicious. It is a small restaurant with a handful of tables and a window where you place your order. Bolton’s is the definition of a hole in the wall and a place you might drive by without even realizing it. Their chicken and fish come as either a sandwich or plate and their sides are classic southern traditions with the exception of spaghetti which I still don’t get. But be cautious when ordering. The mild is hot so I can only speculate how spicy the smokin’ hot is but to quote David Chang “It was one of the worst, maybe one of the most painful experiences I’ve ever had in my life.”
624 Main St, Nashville, boltonsspicy.com
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Open for breakfast and lunch Biscuit Love serves up biscuits of course as well as a few non-biscuit options. Starting as an air airstream food truck there are now two brick & mortar locations in Nashville and one in Franklin. I recommend an order of their bonuts (the blueberry compote is divine) along with their East Nasty (which was named Bon Appetit’s Best Sandwich of 2015) or the Princess. Expect to a wait especially on the weekends up to an hour during peak times. We went on a Wednesday and the wait wasn’t as bad. Sorry guys they don’t take reservations but you can place to-go orders online.
316 11th Ave S, Nashville, TN, biscuitlove.com
2001 Belcourt Ave, Nashville, TN
132 3rd Ave S, Franklin, TN
The Mockingbird features comfort food influenced by global flavors from Mexico, Italy, France, Korea, Japan, South America and many more. Their menu offers both small and large plates meant to be shared. I recommend an order of the Rice, Rice, Baby, Feeling Grate!, and Tatchos…don’t you just love the creative names of their dishes? With multiple seating areas including two outside patios, this is a great spot for weekend brunch or weekday dinner. Reservations are available on either OpenTable or on their website.
121 12th Ave N, Nashville, TN, mockingbirdnashville.com
I had lunch at the Husk in Charleston earlier this year so when we planned our trip to Nashville it was at the top of my list for dinner. Their menu is “not about rediscovering Southern cooking but exploring the reality of Southern food” and they have a saying that “if it doesn’t come from the South, it’s not coming through the door.” The menu is focused on seed-saving, heirloom husbandry, in-house pickling, and charcuterie programs. Their menu changes often since they serve what is being produced seasonally and locally but everything we had was delicious so you can’t go wrong with whatever you order. You can make reservations through Resy and I recommend planning ahead if you want to get weekend dinner reservations.
37 Rutledge St., Nashville, TN, husknashville.com
Butcher & Bee
With an eclectic and changing menu featuring Eastern Mediterranian dishes, Butcher & Bee offers mezze and dips (smaller plates), sandwiches for lunch, plates for dinner and an after-dinner menu. They also have a full weekend brunch menu which is what we enjoyed during our visit. I recommend an order of the Turkish hummus and whipped feta and green eggs & lamb which seem to be a couple of the consistent items on their brunch menu but everything is delicious so be adventurous when ordering. They do take reservations for brunch, lunch, and dinner on Resy.
902 Main St., Nashville, TN, butcherandbee.com
Five Daughters Bakery
I am a try sucker for anything sweet and after having had the cronut from the Dominque Ansel Bakery in New York, I knew I had to try the 100 layer doughnut from Five Daughters. Bring your stretchy pants because you are going to want to try them all. Besides their menu staples, they also offer seasonal flavors. They have six locations across Nashville, Franklin, and Atlanta and they are open all day, every day or until they sell-out.
1110 Caruthers Ave, Nashville, TN, fivedaughtersbakery.com
230 Franklin Rd Ste 11J, Franklin, TN
3820 Charlotte Ave Ste 128, Nashville, TN
1900 Eastland Ave Suite 101, Nashville, TN
675 Ponce de Leon Ave NE, Suite N143, Atlanta, GA
1170 Howell Mill Rd, #100, Atlanta GA