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Nashville restaurants

The classic Nashville dining experience has four simple elements: one choice of meat and three choices of vegetables—and yes, most Nashvillians do consider pork-stewed pinto beans and macaroni elbows swimming in velvety cheese sauce to be veggies. At the city's famous meat-and-three restaurants, diners choose from a rotating menu of Southern specialties—fried chicken, catfish, turnip greens, squash casserole, creamed corn—rounding out the meal with corn-bread cakes and sweet tea. These low-key joints are scattered throughout the city, usually not in the best parts of town; but since most are open only for breakfast and lunch, safety is not a big consideration—especially when there's banana pudding at stake.

The prevalence of country cookin' doesn't mean that more sophisticated palates suffer in Nashville. An upscale food scene thrives near downtown, at chic Gulch restaurants like Radius 10 and Watermark; East Nashville eateries like Margot Café and Marche; and the Capitol Grille downtown. Prime dinner hours run from 7 to 9 pm; reserve ahead or risk a wait of half an hour or longer.

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Arnold's Country Kitchen, Nashville

For less than a ten spot, you can enjoy what is commonly considered to be the city's best meat-and-three. For those not familiar with the Southern concept, this...more

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Capitol Grille, Nashville

The Capitol Grille is where you'll find high-powered lobbyists celebrating the passage of a major bill on Capitol Hill, just a few blocks north, as well as...more

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Lime, Nashville

Lime is more than just a pan-Latino bistro (a rare food hybrid in this city). Owned by the same people as sushi hot spot Virago, this midtown newcomer is the...more

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Marche, Nashville

There's nowhere cooler to have a late lunch or working breakfast than this East Nashville joint. Housed in an old car showroom, Marche serves a simple, seasonal...more

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Margot Café and Bar, Nashville

With two bistro-style restaurants to her name, chef Margot McCormack is the Wolfgang Puck of East Nashville. She opened her namesake 80-seat eatery in East...more

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Midtown Café, Nashville

Nashville restaurateur Randy Rayburn has rowdier restaurants than Midtown Café, but this is where the big kids in town get their kicks. City powerbrokers...more

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Monell's, Nashville

Dinner at Monell's is like dropping in on a Tennessee family reunion. Everything is shared and served on long, well-worn tables amid cozy fireplaces and...more

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Park Café, Nashville

Tucked into what was once a private home, this local favorite in Sylvan Park feels intimate and warm. This may have something to do with the arrangement of...more

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Radius10, Nashville

This Gulch restaurant succeeds in pulling off minimalist chic in a town where the style is more down-home than Met Home. The oval-shaped steel bar and...more

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Samurai Sushi, Nashville

This tiny eight-table restaurant is a favorite among in-the-know locals for owner Yun Choo's imaginative rolls. One of the most popular is his namesake Choo...more

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.



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