With so many outstanding restaurants in Nashville, sometimes we are stumped by the question “Where should we go?”
Whether it’s breakfast, lunch or dinner, I want quality of taste and interest along with ambiance. And, when it’s a business meal, add to that the need to tailor the experience. The venue I choose will set the stage, whether it’s for a quiet, in-depth conversation, a meet-and-greet with the gang, an out-of-the-way deal-making venture or a quick connect to download information.
No matter your professional need, Nashville’s foodie nation has a wealth of options. So many that I’ve pulled together my short list of go-to’s. There’s always the standard Jimmy Kelly’s for dinner, J. Alexander’s for lunch, Starbuck’s for coffee. But here are a few others you should try on for size.
For an unhurried lunch out of the downtown fray, it’s The Mad Platter in Germantown. My long legs ache for better chairs, but the pasta dish is a long-time favorite and their soups satisfy.
Husk is a must to show off your foodie-ness. Avoid lunching on warm days, though; the sun through the windows is toasty and will distract you from the burger and fries. The burger doesn’t just have bacon on top; the salty goodness is ground into the meat. Inspired.
Etch is my all-time personal favorite for an important lunch or dinner. If you want to impress with innovation, Deb Paquette’s layers of flavor and innovative ingredients never disappoint. Lunch service lately has been unusually slow; yet even that won’t dissuade my visits. Always start with the roasted cauliflower to share. Your guests will thank you. Take time to savor your experience and you’ll be back often.
If you want to see and be seen, I recommend Bricktop’s on West End every time. Full and boisterous, this won’t be where you have an intimate conversation. This is the place to people-watch, surreptitiously of course. The gazpacho is my favorite thing about the return of warm-weather menus.
Head to The Palm for quiet talk. Its impeccable service lets you focus on building that business relationship. It’s great for folks visiting as well, and you’re in the heart of the downtown scene if you want to go somewhere else for drinks and music.
Midtown Café is not someplace I go regularly, but colleagues swear it’s a business-lunch experience that consistently achieves the right balance. It’s always full, so they must be right.
Noshville Midtown is the place for breakfast, especially if there’s a government bigwig you want to run into. During legislative session, the booths are packed with elected officials filling up on bagels, pancakes and the best oatmeal around.
For coffee, I’d bypass the chains for CREMA on Hermitage. It’s a bit rustic in décor, but the drinks and friendly staff and patrons make it a comfortable spot for a quick connect or leisurely conversation to catch up.
Finally, for LA-trendy, hop over to Pinewood Social in the Trolley Barns. It offers at least four different experiences: couches for web-surfing, coffee-drinking casual, a bar where single diners congregate and network, booths for those wanting to eat and meet, and even a fully served bowling alley. You have to experience it to believe that, yes, bowling can serve as a great business-meal setting.
What are your favorites? HerSavvy would love to know!
Get out and discover Nashville, people. There’s a lot out there to enjoy!
About Laura Reinbold, PE
Ms. Reinbold explores ways http://www.ttlusa.com can help build our communities, from the geoprofessional side of the engineering profession.
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