Nashville has an iconic way of life. It has a distinct culture of music, cuisine, and easy-going people who define the South. Some of the best food and live music can be found throughout this beautiful city. Knowing what to eat and see when in Nashville can be tricky simply because there are so many options. But don’t worry about that. After our recent visit to the iconic city, we have got your list of what to eat and see when in Nashville!
What to Eat and See When in Nashville
Featured in each of these publications (Garden & Gun – The Year in Southern Restaurants: Biscuit Love, Southern Living – The South’s Best Breakfast Spots, Garden & Gun – The Art of the Beaten Biscuit), the Biscuit Love was truly AH-MAZING! Located in The Gulch, we knew we were in for a treat when we saw the line gathering outside just to get in the door! I do not know about you but usually, this is a GOOD sign of the things to come! We just had no idea just how good it was until we took our first bites. By the way, don’t let that line thing deter you. It moves relatively quickly.
I chose to have the EGG PLATE- 2 eggs scrambled well with cheese, biscuit, cheese grits (that were to die for IMO), jam, and bacon. My husband had the Biscuit and Gravy which was a buttermilk biscuit, local sausage gravy, and dressed kale. It was seriously so stinking good that you almost wished you had never had it–cause now I know what others aren’t giving me!
Two of their popular items are the EAST NASTY-biscuit, fried boneless chicken thigh, aged cheddar and their BONUTS, delicious sugary delights of fried biscuit dough. We had every intention of going back to this place to try these things for ourselves, yes it was/is that good, but did not make it. It will be one of my first stops next time for sure!
What is great about this location is that there are two iconic Instagram photo opps in or near this place in The Gulch. First, inside the Biscuit Love is this cool Nashville sign that you may have seen from time to time floating out there on social media. Of course, I did not really post mine out there because I could not get a good angle on it. Nonetheless, it is in this restaurant that is only open from 7am to 3pm daily.
The next photo opp that you WILL NOT WANT TO MISS is the famous angel wings that everyone takes a picture with “When in Nashville!” Even my hubby got in on it. #WhatLiftsYou is located around the corner from Biscuit Love, and it is a MUST STOP!
My husband learned about this place from the Travel Channel’s Andrew Zimmern, the host of a show called Bizarre Foods. Although Hattie B’s is not bizarre at all, just a little hot, my husband just had to make a stop here. With a variety of Southern staples like mac n cheese and turnips, this is one good ole eatery! My husband chose to get his chicken medium, meaning a touch of the burn. Boy did he feel it! They have a Damn Hot if you dare!
For the past couple of months, I have been seeing this ice cream on social media. I was tempted to order some to be sent to me. Yes, you read that right. Have ice cream delivered through the mail to my door. Thankfully, I did not have to experience that….yet! While cruising through the downtown area of Nashville, we came across this ice cream shop and I had to stop! It is absolutely heavenly and delightful. Worth the wait. I will be purchasing some from a local store that I just learned sells it by the pint. I am dying to try the Super Moon flavor. It is supposed to taste like cereal marshmallows. Now I do not know about you but I LOVE pulling out all the marshmallows in my favorite little leprechaun box.
Located in East Nashville, we came across this cute bakery with fantastic doughnuts. This vanilla cream doughnut was to die for! Big and fluffy, this mouth-watering doughnut did not just have that lovely ring of vanilla cream on the outside as you see in the picture below, but also, nestled in the middle was another layer of vanilla. DELISH! They have some other staples such as the King Kong, a maple and bacon doughnut I know my boys would have loved! They even have Paleo and Vegan doughnuts.
This was one of our last food stops that were a must. Loveless Cafe began back in 1951 when Lon and Annie started serving fried chicken and biscuits “out the front door of their home to travelers who passed by on US Highway 100, the then primary route between Nashville and Memphis, Tennessee. Weary travelers found comfort and refuge at the cozy home and in the food the owners served to them while seated at picnic tables in the front yard. As the tiny house became a planned stop for treks along the Trace, Lon and Annie Loveless expanded their private home into the Loveless Motel and Cafe. Lon Loveless built and ran the property’s motel and was responsible for smoking the meats while Annie whipped up batches of her homemade preserves and scratch-made-biscuits – a secret recipe that remains unchanged to this day.”
With a history like that, we just had to stop and catch a glimpse into this Southern Living magazine must. Let’s just say, it was well worth the 19-mile drive to the west.
Other Must-See Places in Nashville
Of course, our trip was not just about food….it was about going to some locations that make Nashville, well Nashville! If you are ever in the area, be sure to go to Broadway in downtown Nashville. Here, along will many other connecting streets, you will find an assortment of eateries, bars, and museums. Plus, you can gain access to the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge. Make sure you also find time to stop at the Goo Goo Cluster store. “In 1912, in a copper kettle at the Standard Candy Company at Clark & First Avenue in Nashville, TN, the world’s first ever combination candy bar was invented. A roundish mound of caramel, marshmallow nougat, fresh roasted peanuts and real milk chocolate.” We had to buy ourselves a box of these sinfully delicious candy bars. Let’s just say they did not last long either.
There is so much to do in downtown Nashville that I can confidently say that you can’t do all of Nashville in one visit. You gotta go back a few times before you can get it in. There are so many more musts in the downtown area alone. Signing up for the trolley tours is probably one of the best ways to get in as much as you can from someone who really knows their stuff. This is on our list for the next visit.
Of course, you will want to head to some other must-see places when you are in Nashville. The Gaylord Opryland Hotel is beautiful and ENORMOUS and has to be added to your list to see in person! My husband and I ended up going back here at night so we could see what it was like then. Filled with gardens and shops and eateries, this is a place you could literally spend hours at and it is free to walk around in! You can even park at the Opry Mill Mall, and it is not a bad walk to do this either. When inside, you are going to be blown away at the gardens within the walls of this building and the enormous glass ceiling. They even have a cool river that you can pay to ride on (short ride). You will want to come back at night to see the water fountain show and stroll through the gardens.
Of course, a trip to Nashville would not be complete without a trip to the iconic Grand Ole Opry. My husband and I recall many times as youngsters being wowed by the crazy antics of Minnie Pearl and others on the Hee Haw show. After a little research, I learned a lot more than I ever knew about country music’s most famous stage. It originally began as a radio broadcast at the National Life and Accident Insurance Building in Nashville. Since then it has been housed in four different buildings across Nashville until it finally got its own permanent location in 1974. Located near the Opry Mill Mall and the Gaylord Opryland Hotel, this iconic American stage still holds concerts and allows guests to take a backstage tour.
One of our final stops on this trip was to Cheekwood Eastate & Gardens. “Once the family home of Mabel and Leslie Cheek, this extraordinary 1930s estate, with its Georgian mansion and 55 acres of cultivated gardens and expansive vistas, today serves the public as a botanic garden, woodland sculpture trail, and art museum.” This place is gorgeous, and if you are lucky enough to visit in late March or early April, you will see thousands of tulips in full bloom. One of our favorites from our trip was the railroad tracks. Such a fun thing to see! Check out our video below to see just how lovely it is.
Be sure to drive through Belle Meade which is located just up the road from Cheekwood. Here you will the homes of some of the richest people living in Nashville. Be sure to stop at Belle Meade Mansion. We did not get a chance to do it on this trip, but we will be back.
Where we will go next time we are in Nashville……
Have you ever been to Nashville, Tennessee? What would add to our what to eat and see when in Nashville list?