Nashville has been on the top of my list for quite some time and I finally made it there this past weekend. It’s been my goal to get out of town at least once a month to catch up with old friends, meet new ones, eat, drink, and see music and hopefully come back with some new ideas energized and inspired! Nashville did not disappoint. Below is my top ten list.
Nelson’s Greenbrier Distillery - I have a friend who works here and she set us up with an incredible tour. The tour guide shared the crazy story of how the owners discovered that their family was one of the biggest whiskey makers before prohibition. Through some luck (the town’s historical society had the original recipe for their whiskey and two hundred year old bottles of whiskey). This inspired the brothers to bring back the distillery and for years they’ve continued to grow. They recently sold to Constellations brand (Corona/Pacifico/HIgh West Whiskey) so expect it on shelves near you soon! Yes, I brought home a bottle!
Prince’s Hot Chicken - The legend goes that Thorton Prince was a ladies’ man and after one particularly late night, his girlfriend was not pleased. Instead of yelling at Thorton, she decided to make him fried chicken with an out-of-control amount of spice. She was expecting him to weep and burn, but he loved the chicken and asked for seconds. After some experimentation with the recipe, Prince’s Hot Chicken was born and the rest, as they say, is history! They are the creators of hot chicken and most locals will tell you it’s the best. While I only hit a few hot chicken joints, it was my clear favorite.
Butcher and Bee - I feel very lucky to have had some friends take me here. We shared everything and everything was fantastic. Some of my favorites include whipped feta, avocado crispy rice, black lentils, and chicken fried cauliflower!
Third Man Records - Always wanting to check out record stores wherever I go, I had to go to Jack White’s Third Man Records and our timing could not have been better as they had a show with Sub Pop’s Orville Peck happening when I arrived. I also picked up a record at The Groove but I never made it out to Grimey’s. Next time!
The 5 Spot - If you find yourself in Nashville on a Monday night, make sure you go to this bar and enjoy Motown Monday. Have some drinks and move your feet. You will have a super fun time!
Mas Tacos - I really wasn’t expecting to love this place as much as I did. Honestly, tacos in Tennessee just didn’t seem to be something worth checking out. I was so wrong. I had a fried avocado, a tilapia taco, and elote. If they had a location in Denver, it would be end up being my go-to taco spot!
Country Music Hall of Fame - I had a friend tell on multiple occasions to make sure I don’t miss the Country Music Hall of Fame. I probably would have skipped it had I not been told to go there by this friend. I’m glad I did. This museum is a great place to learn about the history of Country Music from its origins to the commercial country I just can’t stand that. There were so many highlights, but my personal highlight is seeing the car featured in Smokey and the Bandit, one of my favorite movies as a kiddo.
Dino’s - East Nashville’s oldest bar, this bar has everything I love about a bar (cheap drinks, greasy food, awesome bartenders). A friend told me that I had to get a drink there and make sure I get the frito pie. This divey bar was a highlight and talking to the staff was a real treat. I did what I always do and checked out everyones’ food and next time I go there, I’m getting a burger!
Santa’s Pub - This double-wide trailer dive bar was recommended half a dozen times by friends from all over. This spot is as shitty as you would imagine a double-wide trailer bar might be. They only serve canned beers and yes, they are cheap. We might have made a mistake as we left as the house band (that may or may not feature Santa) was setting up. They do karaoke every night of the week and when I go next time, I will make a point to stick around for that and attempt to close down the bar (closes at 2:30am every night).
Duke’s - A good buddy told me to spend some time at this East Nashville watering hole. I went there after day-drinking for a good stretch and after spending a few hours at Rosepepper’s Cinco de Mayo party. I showed my cousin a ferrari (half fernet / half campari) which I love! The vibe and music and staff of this bar were all top notch.I would love to spend more time at this bar!
Honorable mentions - Pinewood Social (cool bar/diner/bowling alley), Rosemary & Beauty Queen (great cocktail bar in an old house), Crema (hipster coffee shop), Robert’s Western World (downtown honky tonk), and make sure you get yourself a Bushwhacker, a real boozy milkshake!
I did spend my first night on Broadway and it was a shit show of bachelorette parties and tourists which was super fun hanging with my cousins and my friend Whitney, but I’m glad I spent most of my time in East Nashville! I got so many recommends in Nashville and I barely scratched the surface. If you go, definitely spend some time with the spots I loved, but there are so many more spots that I look forward to checking out next time! Thanks Nashville!