It was winter and the cold New York weather had gotten us thinking about travel. Trying to get away for Presidents Day Weekend, we looked into a few places but between booked up hotels and pricey flights, we ended up getting an amazing deal on Nashville!
If you’re looking for a fun little domestic escape for a couple of days, this is seriously the place! This little but charming city astounded us at every turn – so much to see & do! Read on to learn about how we spent 3 amazing days in ‘Music City!’
Upon our arrival in Nashville, we rented a car and decided to get some lunch. We had heard about a restaurant on a travel show called ‘Arnold’s’ where they serve the coveted ‘Meat-in-3’s.’ This restaurant was delicious and PACKED (worth the wait!) and is like cafeteria style, where you move along a line and grab what you want along the way. ‘Meat-in-3’s’ is essentially a choice of 1 meat and 3 sides, and usually served with sweet tea and cornbread. If you’re in need of some authentic Southern style cooking, look no further than Arnold’s!
After our meal at Arnold’s, we made our way to explore the Opryland Hotel. These are the grounds where the Grand Ole Opry is. We did not get to see a show at the Opry but the grounds of the hotel are beautiful and definitely a great way to spend a few hours.
After our fun day at Arnold’s & The Opryland (still thinking about that delicious ‘Meat-In-3’s), we headed to check into our hotel and get ready for dinner and a boot scootin’ night out on the town! We heard about an amazing hot chicken joint called Hattie B’s Hot Chicken and we knew we had to try it! There was a long line, but it was definitely worth the wait. There are several flavors to choose from ranging from the most mild ‘Southern’ to ‘Shut The Cluck Up!’, which is the hottest. Admittedly I am a complete wuss when it comes to spice, so I got the ‘Southern’ but my brave husband is quite the trooper and went for the almighty ‘Shut The Cluck Up!’ (Luckily he lived to tell about it).
After dinner we headed to the best place to go bar hopping in the city, Honky Tonk Highway. It’s a street lined with bar after bar and each bar has music and the best part was NO COVER CHARGES! We hopped around a few bars but ended up making home at Legends, where there was an amazing band playing! I never realized how much I liked country music until I went to Nashville. There may be a lil Southern in this New Yorker yet! 😉
You know it’s a great night when you are at the bar until last call and even then feeling like you want to rebel and stay longer. We slept well that night and looked forward to our second day in Nashville.
We woke up and decided to get a true down-home Nashville style breakfast! We had heard biscuits & gravy were all the rage but the line was too long at the place we really wanted to go (boo to you, Biscuit Love), so we ended up finding another place to get the beloved Biscuits & Gravy, at Bar Louie, and it definitely did not disappoint. Biscuits and gravy are – you guessed it – a biscuit with a white gravy on it, served with tator tots. These things were so good, we wish we could eat them everyday!
After our breakfast, we explored the city some more! We heard the Ryman was a historic and beautiful place to see a show so we stopped by the box office and luckily we were able to get tickets to a show that was playing that night. The band was called Shovels & Rope and they were a folk band but we didn’t know too much about them. We were excited to check out the show and the acoustics at the Ryman make it one of the best venues! As pictured below, the Ryman has been placed on the National Register Of Historic Places as well as declared a National Historic Landmark.
After we got our tickets, we went to Printers Alley and there was an incredible New Orleans themed bar called The Bourbon Street Blues & Boogie Bar. We listened to some jazz and got some Hurricanes. The music was awesome and New Orleans is a place we were looking to get to in the near future! (Update: Finally made it there in May 2018, check out our blog on that here)
Honestly, can you ever go wrong with jazz & alcohol? Our livers say no.
That night for dinner we wanted to get BBQ at Martin’s Whole Hog. This place was awesome! You walk in and go to the counter and order, then a server brings it to you at the table. The tables are long, community-style tables, so you eat with others, but I find we always meet the coolest people when we travel and there’s nothing better than sharing a few laughs over some amazing Southern style BBQ!
Finally the moment we were waiting for was set to begin! We had our tickets in hand and we made it to the Ryman for Shovels & Rope! I cannot sing enough praises about this band. We honestly had no idea what to expect. We had spontaneously just showed up at the box office earlier that morning and took our chances on what they had available. Shovels and Rope were a hugely talented band and everyone in the Ryman that night was just going nuts over these 2. They were very different than anything we listened to back home and could honestly say if they ever made their way to New York, they’d have 2 people dying to come see them again. Shovel and Rope, it is ‘Saif’ to say, you made country fans out of us!
On our final day in Nashville what better way to start than with ANOTHER amazing ‘Meat-In-3’? We were staying in a little town about 20 minutes away called Franklin. There was a place there called Bishop’s that we had passed a few times before and were wanting to check out. The true way to tell if a place is a good is how packed with locals it gets. Bishop’s had a line out the door with people coming home from church – and they lived up to the hype! They even served a delicious slice of Chess Pie, which is an amazing & tasty Southern dessert. We enjoyed Bishop’s very much and could eat Chess Pie for the rest of our lives. (Does anyone know where to get it in New York? We tried to find it here and it proved to be a difficult plight).
After Bishop’s, we walked around Centennial Park for a bit and the charming, upscale neighborhood of East Nashville. We found an awesome hotdog shop and an ice cream shop … both pleasing the tummies of Sam & me – Sam for the hot dog and myself for the ice cream. (I get ice cream on every trip we take. When does it get to the level to constitute it as an addiction?).
Our final stop for the day was Dino’s for some awesome Frito Pie! This place was honestly a hole in the wall in a not so great area of Nashville but I’ve been told these kinds of places have some of the best food, and in this case, I was told correctly. Definitely enjoyed the Frito Pie and have since made more Frito Pies back home in New York than we care to admit 🙂
We had such a great time in Nashville and can’t wait until the next time we can get back there!
Happy Honky Tonkin, ya’ll!
Where We Stayed
Towneplace Suites 7153 S. Springs Dr Franklin, TN 37067