These are a few of my favorite 'Nashville' things

You know you have the song in you head now... and to be honest, I totally tried to come up with Nashville-related lyrics to substitute for the actual, but alas, I am no songwriter. Anyway, I have so many favorite things to do around our amazing town - and I thought it'd be fun to put together a random assortment and running list of these ideas for you to try.

Ya'll, so much of these are simply life changing, so it would be to your benefit to carefully comb through and experience all I share below.

And here they are, in no particular order:

A Gravel Sundae from Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams
The Vodka Sauce Pie from 5 Points Pizza
The Pharmacy Burger, French Fries with Beer Gravy for Dipping at the Pharmacy
Chicken Tortilla Soup and Sweet Cream Plantains from Mas Tacos
Buffalo Feathers Caesar Salad from Jacksons
Maple Cotton Candy Bacon, Jalapeno Bruleed Creamed Corn, Cremoso dessert from Kayne Prime
Pork Papusa from Las Americas
Friday Pasta, Grilled Chicken Gyro, and Hummus from Tazikis
Garganelli Verde with Pork Ragout from Rolf and Daughters
Belly Ham Pizza from City House
Smoked Hot Wings at Edley's BBQ
Roasted Cauliflower with Truffled Pea Pesto and Smoked Brisket Papusa (lunch) at Etch
Buffalo White Cheese Dip, Chicken Quesadilla from Rosepepper
The Bird Sandwich from The Silly Goose
Korean BBQ from Korea House
Pho from VN Pho & Deli
Pot de Creme with Bentons Bacon Caramel Popcorn at Silo
Korean BBQ Taco from Local Taco
Fried Pickles and the French Dip at Sportsman's Grill
Coconut Popsicle dipped in Olive & Sinclair Chocolate from Las Palatas
Spinach Gnocchi with Vodka Sauce from Cafe Nonna
Margherita Pizza and Patio Time at Bella Napoli
Cheese Curds from Whiskey Kitchen
Crispy Fire Crunch Roll and V2 Edameme at Virago
Tomato Basil Soup at Bread & Company
French Toast at Marche
Black Bean Salad at Calypso
Spinach con Queso dip at J Alexanders
The BLT at Mitchell's Deli
Soft Pretzels at The Flying Saucer
Plum Pork and Fried Green Tomatoes at Germantown Cafe
Waffle Fries and Ranch Dressing at ML Rose
Brussels Sprouts at Moto
Biscuits from Charlie Bob's
Pork Loin, NY Strip, and Cookie Skillet from Lockeland Table
Em's Bowl at Sky Blue Cafe
DeSanos Capricciosa Pizza (Bonus Note: No corkage fee BYOB policy)

Rum and Cola from no. 308
Bushwhacker at 3 Crow Bar
Rosemary Lemonade from The Silly Goose
Old Fashioned at Holland House Bar & Refuge
Iced Coffee at Crema
Fresh Lime Margarita from Rosepepper
Thunder Ann Ale from Jackelope Brewery
Fruit Tea at Bread & Company
Triple Smoke Whiskey from Cosair Distillery
Jack's Mule at the Oak Bar
Tasting time on Saturday at Woodland Wine Merchant (3:00-5:00)
The Hop Spot on Gallatin
Latte at Frothy Monkey

Eater Nashville
My Twitter Feed
Ruth's Food Gospel
Style Blueprint
Nashville Lifestyles

Hike in Radnor Lake Park
Hike the White Trail, beginning at the Steps in Percy Warner Park
A massage and relaxation time at Escape Day Spa
A picnic in Centennial Park
Walk the Natchez Trace Bridge
A stroll through Opryland Hotel
Tour the Carnton Plantation
Pedestrian Bridge downtown Nashville
Shop at Shoppes on Fatherland, 1108 Shops on Woodland
Catch a Show at 12th & Porter
Catch a Show at the Ryman
Watch a movie at the Belcourt
Stroll/Shop on Main Street in Downtown Franklin
Any show at the Schermerhorn Symphony
Season tickets to TPAC
Frist Fridays
Paint Nite!

I know I left a few things off, but do not fear - will be continually updating this list. What are some of your Nashville faves?

Moto - M Street's Newest Venture / A Review

Last week I was able to experience M Street's newest creation Moto Cucina during a special event for Nashville bloggers. Upon hearing mixed reviews initially, I must admit I was a bit hesitant to give Moto a try- but let me start of by saying thanks to M Street for the invite, and ya'll, I left far from disappointed. The food, the service, the space. All fantastic.

We started dinner off right with a healthy pouring of red (as all Italian feasts should), and dove right in to some apps. Duck Fat Olives was the first of several to be brought to the table. I am not an olive fan whatsoever, and found these to be absolutely delicious. Lesson learned: even one of my most hated foods can be thrown in duck fat and all is right with the world. Noted. Next up and worth mentioning, Pork Cheek Terrine and Oysters. I enjoyed the Pork Terrine but due to my being deathly allergic to Oysters, unfortunately wasn't able to partake- and missed out on my partner's favorite app of the night. We then experienced the Raw Winter Vegetables, accompanied by green apple, blue cheese, white balsamic. One word: LOVE. So flavorful and fresh, an unexpectedly perfect way to kick off our meal.

The food kept coming and at this point we were already beginning to fill up; thank goodness I was able to take one for the team and keep going. Next up: Pizza. They were outstanding, perfectly cooked, and among my favorite of items we sampled. Porchetta, Kale Pesto, and Mozzarella was my favorite, but the Mushroom, Black Truffle, and Fontina was a close second. House made Gnocchi and Black Spaghetti were the pasta options, with the Spaghetti far exceeding the Gnocchi in flavor. Two sides that both stood out were the Brussels Sprouts and the Roasted Potatoes. The Brussels have officially taken the award as my favorite in Nashville. Whew, ya'll, this is a big deal. Paired with pancetta and apple sweet and sour sauce, they were simply divine.

Finally, we ended the night with a couple of desserts. I love love love anything lemon and to my delight we were served a Meyer Lemon Budino: A creamy custard with the perfect balance of sweet and sour. As one who believes there aren't a ton of great dessert options in Nashville, it was a breath of fresh air to add a new one to my list of musts. That said, you don't want to miss this one.

All-in-all a wonderful experience. Congrats to the folks at M Street for bringing another winner to Nashville-Moto is helping fill the void that is the lack of quality Italian places in town, and filling it well. I very much look forward to our next visit!

1120 McGavock Street
Nashville, TN 37203
Moto Cucina + Enoteca on Urbanspoon

Edley's Bar-B-Que Restaurant Review

One of my favorite go-to spots for a quick lunch or dinner is Edley's Bar-B-Que in East Nashville or 12South: A casual-yet-trendy spot, Edley's offers fabulous service, a delicious menu, and great drink selection all at a decent price.

Food options are plentiful so it may be tough initially to make your ordering decisions, but, take comfort in knowing you really can't go wrong with any of their menu items. Typically I lean toward the pork sandwich paired with a couple of their homemade sides like baked beans and potato salad, but as of late I have been all about their Smoked Wings and the BBQ Nachos. The wings are huge, incredibly tender, and flavorfulwith just the right amount of smoke and spicy kick. And the nachos... goodness gracious ya'll. House-made potato chips are topped with a house-made cheese sauce, tomatoes, green onion, sour cream, and your choice of meat. Go with the brisket here, and get ready for a life changing experience.

Edley's keeps giving you new reasons to come back by usually offering a daily special I've had amazing dishes from a Pork Sandwich topped with grilled Peach Truck peaches (divine) to a Buffalo Shrimp Po' Boyand even all you can eat fried catfish nights. You can keep up with their specials via their Facebook page.

Bar-B-Que is best when paired with an ice-cold brew, and Edley's has a fantastic selection of craft beer on draft, typically including local breweries like Yazoo, Calfkiller, and Jackelope. Also a must try is the Bushwacker, one of my favorite Nashville treats: A creamy, chocolate milkshake-like adult beverage.

One last tip: Don't miss either locale's fabulous patio in the warmer weather always a great place to dine al-fresco.

What is your favorite Edley's menu item?

Edley's Bar-B-Que East
908 Main Street
Nashville, TN 37206

12South Locale
2706 12th Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37204
Edley's Bar-B-Que on Urbanspoon

Two Ten Jack, Nashville's first Japanese Pub, Opens Next Weekend

two ten jack nashville

I have to admit, I'm incredibly intrigued by the 'Izakaya'/Japanese Pub concept. And, based off of the pictures I've seen of the space and the buzz surrounding the preview party, I'm pretty certain (and hopeful) Two Ten Jack is sure to be a hit. The menu will feature gourmet ramen (YES), yakitori (skewers & grilled items), sushi, and other Japanese-inspired pub comfort food with a Southern twist. Prices range from $4 to $21. Um, yes please.

Word on the street is that next weekend, January 24th and 25th, will be the restaurant's grand opening. Festivities will include a five-course meal with drink pairings, and will feature a ramen course prepared in part by 'world renowned' ramen Chef Shigetoshi Nakamura of Sun Noodle Ramen Lab. All alcohol, taxes, and gratuity included for 65 bucks. Not too shabby.

After next weekend, the restaurant will be open daily for dinner at 5:00, reservations taken for parties of six or more.

Tickets and more info for the grand opening can be found here, and, you can enter to win two tickets to the event here. You're welcome.

Two Ten Jack
1900 Eastland Avenue
Nashville, TN 37206

Top 6 Happy Hours in Nashville

Sometimes after work all you really need is a good happy hour to unwind with friends, grab a good drink, and a bite to eat. After chatting with a buddy of mine about our favorite places to do just that in Nashville, I thought I should pass along these ideas to you.

best happy hours in nashville

So, with much thinking and incredibly fierce debate, I was able to narrow down the top six best Happy Hours in town. What are your faves?

Thursday night is probably one of my favorite times of the week as long as I'm at Holland House. Why, you ask? Its happy hour all night long! A fabulous selection of $5 finely crafted specialty cocktails and $5 bites give you the perfect excuse for a fine evening out and about. My favorites: The Old Fashioned, Parmesan Truffle Fries (divine), Hot Chicken, Meester Burger, and the Catfish.

*Update - they no longer do the Thursday HH, however, Holland House permanently added a fabulous selection of $6 cocktails (including my favorite, the Old Fashioned), and reasonably-priced snacks. Benefit = happy hour prices, all the time!

308 in my opinion, has one of the most consistent and best happy hours in the city. Every day from 5 til 8, Sundays and Mondays til 10. Happy Hour specials include two for one wells, a $5 special cocktail of the day and  $5 wines. Don't miss the homemade cola and ginger ale as mixers. Also, the frites and sliders are spot on.

ML Rose
A great burger, wings, waffle fries, the best ranch dressing in the world... and two for ones all night long! Wednesday nights in West Nashville and Thursdays on 8th, two of my favorite nights to grab a beer at one of the best local bars in town.

As one of the very first restaurants I ever visited before moving to Nashville, Jackson's has an incredibly special place in my heart (as do the cookie dough egg rolls). Two-fer-Tuesdays is my favorite time to grab a seat on the patio with two for one draft beers (their selection is superb) and well drinks all night long. My favorite menu item: The Buffalo Feathers Caesar. Delish.

Happy hour starts at 4:00 everyday, goes til 6:30 except Friday/Saturday til 6:00. A great chance to experience one of my favorite restaurant atmospheres in Nashville. A fab menu of $6 snacks, $5 cocktails, and reduced price draught beers. The whipped goat cheese and Pizza of the Day will change your life.

I <3 Village Pub. Super cozy, and an incredibly friendly staff. Delicious soft pretzels and beer cheese dip, and a wonderful beer selection are just a few of the reasons why I'm such a fan. On my last visit, I learned of Mule Monday: HALF PRICE Mules all night (only 3 bucks)! Just choose your spirit- Vodka, Whiskey, Tequila, Gin, Rum or Scotch.

Christmas in Nashville 2013

It's CRAZY to think that we are only a month away from Christmas 2013. Christmas. 2013! Goodness, this year has absolutely FLOWN by. That said, as the holiday party invites begin to roll in, it's time we start blocking out our schedules for this hectic time of year, so, I'm going to go ahead and share with you some of my favorite events to commemorate the season here in Nashville.
opryland christmas lights
Opryland Hotel's Gorgeous Christmas Lights
If you have not been out to Opryland for Christmas- GO! It is an ABSOLUTE must see. Millions of lights fabulous Christmas decor, and horse drawn carriages cover what in my opinion is one of the most beautiful sights in the city. The hotel is impressive on its own, but the holiday decor puts a different twist on its scenery, and it is a sight you just can't miss. There are a few other attractions in the area: ICE! Featuring Frosty the Snowman, and the Radio City Rockettes Radio City Christmas Spectacular.  

Tip: If you park in the mall parking lot you'll save $25 in parking that the hotel charges for their lot, and it's just a short walk down the sidewalk to the hotel. 

Christ Church Christmas Concert
Only ten bucks will get you a ticket to one of my favorite events of the Christmas season.  Held at Christ Church in south Nashville, you will experience their choir and backed by a full orchestra.  Christmas Tunes + Choir + Orchestra = Pure Holiday Goodness.

Nashville Christmas Parade
Pretty self explanatory, the 60th annual parade will be held December 7th, starting with our Mayor lighting the city Christmas tree at 6:30pm, the parade following at 7:00.  Such a fun way to kick off the season!

Dickens of a Christmas in Historic Downtown Franklin
Downtown Franklin has always been one of my FAVORITE places to visit in the Nashville area, so, add a Christmas theme to the already historic and beautiful streetscape and I'm there!   Held December 14-15 in 2013, this free festival includes everything from horse-drawn carriage rides and candlelit Christmas caroling to crafts and sugar-plums.  LOVE. This.

Holiday at Cheekwood
Ya'll.  Cheekwood is absolutely gorgeous, especially this time of year.  The grounds will be decorated for the season, and the main house will be showcasing trees decorated with the theme 'Christmas in Color'.  Also, special events include Santa Saturdays, a holiday concert series, and an Adult Gingerbread Workshop that features adult beverages.  Ummm.. yes, please!

Historic East Nashville Home Tour
Being held December 7th and 8th this year, this is an amazing chance to check out some of Nashville's most beautiful architecture on the East side of town.  Tickets are only $10, and are available at the link above. I for one love, love, love historic homes and East Nashville, so don't miss this chance to peek inside some of the most beautiful ones in town!

I know this is a restaurant and not really an event.. But, it's just so damn cozy (not to mention they rock the multi-colored lights on their building year-round) that it is a perfect way to begin your evening or end after attending one of the events listed above. Check out my full review here.

What are YOUR favorite Christmas traditions in Nashville?  Be sure to let me know!  

The Real Mistress of Downton Abbey is Coming to Nashville

Ya'll. I am beyond ob-sessed with everything that has to do with the show Downton Abbey, so you can imagine how excited I was to find out that we will have the opportunity to meet Lady Fiona Carnarvon - the 8th Countess of Carnarvon and mistress of Highclere Castle (or Downton Abbey as we know it), here in Nashville.

Lady Fiona will be the keynote speaker at the 2014 Antique and Garden Show on Feb 7, 2014 held at our gorgeous Music City Center. Confession: I've never actually been to the show, but, have always heard it is fabulous and as one who loves and appreciates great design and decor (and lets be honest- I'm hoping/certain Ms. Carnarvon will whisk me back to England to live at the estate), will be there this year with bells on. The three day event showcases the best examples of both interior and outdoor design, along with various speakers such as Carnarvon. Oh, and all the proceeds benefit Cheekwood Botanical Gardens, one of my absolute favorite Nashville treasures.

2014 Antique and Garden Show featuring Lady Fiona Carnarvon
February 7 - February 9, 2014
Music City Center
More info/tickets: