Over the past few years, Nashville has become a food lover’s dream destination, to the point where it basically seems unfair to other cities (we're not sorry). Adding a few more notches to the town's ever-expanding belt, here are the eight best new spots to cut the ribbon over the summer...
What you’re getting: Paella Americano
You’re gonna want to take a few friends with you when you visit Americano for the first time as many of the dishes are rather large. The paella is the best you’ll get in Nashville and it pairs marvelously with one of the blood orange-swirled margaritas. Of course, it is a tapas bar so be sure to order the fried manchego cheese and the Nashville hot cauliflower and the ahi tuna guacamole... we could go on.
What you’re getting: Skirt steak
Little Octopus has been the star of the Nashville food scene since it opened earlier this summer. It’s located at the POP Nashville space in East Nashville and is the creation of the same people that brought us Otaku South. The focus is on fresh ingredients and clean eating which is highly reflected on the menu. Since opening, it's also added a brunch menu. and who isn’t a big fan of brunch? Note: it's closed on Mondays.
What you’re getting: BBQ sliders
This hip new Nashville restaurant serves a locally sourced, plant-based menu that’s vegan, gluten-free, AND raw. If you’re looking for loads of healthy and light options, Avo is definitely the spot for you. It's goal, however, seems to be providing Nashville with raw food options that are much more than just salads (not that those aren’t great too). Avo’s menu includes lasagna (made with zucchini noodles), BBQ sliders (made with smoked maiitake mushrooms), ceviche tacos, cheesecake, and so much more raw deliciousness.
What you’re getting: Matchless Coffee Soda
Steadfast is the newest trendy Nashville coffee shop that has established itself in Germantown. It serves traditional espresso and drip coffees as well as iced coffee that’s brewed traditionally (hot) and then flash-chilled to preserve the delicious flavors. But our all-time favorite drink on the menu: Matchless Coffee Soda. Yup, coffee + soda. It's actually good, and even better in the heat. Steadfast has a great breakfast and lunch menu too, in fact it's had so much success in the short time that it's been open that it's already planning a new location in SoBro set to open in September.
What you’re getting: Buffalo chicken mac n’ cheese
Double Dogs is the newest casual dining spot in Nashville which serves its takes on classic American dishes such as Buffalo chicken mac n’ cheese, hot chicken pot pie, and a nice long list of pizzas, burgers, and hot dogs. It also has a great beer list to wash it all down.
The Nations, West Nashville
What you’re getting: Roasted half chicken
This new upscale restaurant in West Nashville focuses on seasonal dishes with strong roots in Italian cuisine. Fifty First Kitchen & Bar also has a great list of wine and unique cocktails that pair well with the food. It’s located in a renovated old cottage with a large garden in the yard making the atmosphere very homey and yet still formal.
What you’re getting: Beef brisket sandwich with avocado fries
Because we Nashvillians simply can’t get enough hot chicken, brisket, and BBQ, we’re very excited about this new brisket food truck. Music City Brisket’s menu includes a smoked beef brisket sandwich, baby back ribs, and fish tacos. It also has a menu item fit for your four-legged furry friend called brisket biscuits that’s veterinarian approved and all the money from the sale of these biscuits goes to charity. We can get behind that.
What you’re getting: The Mt. Alyeska (drunken spiced peanut butter- & banana-stuffed French toast)
A ski lodge in Nashville? That’s probably not something you expected to pop up but it did, and we love it. Embers is meant to mimic the atmosphere of a cozy ski lodge that’s full of guests enjoying a nice cocktail with dinner after a long day on the slopes. And while the dinner menu is pretty good, the weekend brunch menu is great, and includes an entire section of brunch-only cocktails.
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1. Americano - Freestyle Tapas Bar1720 West End Avenue, Suite 100, Nashville
2. Little Octopus604 Gallatin Ave, Nashville
3. AVO3 City Ave., Nashville
4. Steadfast Coffee603 Taylor St, Nashville
5. Double Dogs1807 21st Ave S, Nashville (& other locations)
6. Fifty First Kitchen & Bar5104 Illinois Ave, Nashville
7. Music City Brisket, Nashville
8. Embers Ski Lodge2410 12th Ave S, Nashville
This spot has tapas, but don't let the idea of small plates convince you that you could leave hungry: the main plates are enough to serve a few. Be sure to stop by for one of their happy hours, where you can pair your small plate with some margaritas.
In addition to serving as the flexible kitchen for some really outstanding pop-ups for visiting chefs, Little Octopus in East Nashville is all about eating fresh, healthy food. Chef Daniel Herget relies on South Florida and Latin influences to create cuisine using fresh regional ingredients, including lots of organic items. The resulting menu is a melange of of inventive dishes that you won’t find anywhere else in town. With patio seating and a full bar, there's even a spot for everyone.
This restaurant in Midtown has an entirely plant-based menu with local produce, and it's all served raw (nothing is heated over 118 degrees to preserve all the enzymes, vitamins and nutrients in your food). Enjoy some vegetarian pad thai, lasagna or tabbouleh salad in a modern, rustic setting with bare concrete floors and wood paneling. Better yet, pair it with an avocado margarita or any one of AVO's amazing beer or wine options.
Steadfast is a coffee shop striving for the highest quality coffee drinks-- but they also serve lunch & dinner from 11:30 until close. The menu ranges from a granola bowl to falafel.
This place takes hot dogs, burgers, & wings, and builds an entire menu around them. The casual spot is probably not diet friendly, but when you're ordering buffalo chicken mac n' cheese we promise you won't mind.
The Italian-based menu at 51st is seasonally driven and accompanied by a well-rounded wine list and various house cocktails.
This food truck is entirely dedicated to killer meats and sandwiches. We're talking brisket, baby back ribs, fried shrimp tacos, and a reuben sandwich. Sides include fries, avocado fries, and a summer salad. They even have a menu "For our four legged friends," which offers brisket biscuits that are veterinary approved.
Aspen meets Nashville at Embers Ski Lodge, where gastropub fare and cocktails reign supreme. Guests can dine in cabin-like environs against a backdrop of Mt. Everest, snacking on everything from burgers, salads, and seafood entrées. The beer and wine offerings are solid, but the massive whiskey list is the true highlight here -- and besides, what better way to start Sunday brunch than with two ounces of rare rye by way of an actual shot-ski?