Nick and I always research where to eat before we take a trip. Since we were traveling with Liz and Mike, we had to make sure that the restaurants would make everyone happy, and also make sure there were vegetarian and gluten free options. We loved all of the places we tried, but we narrowed it down to seven places that you have to try if you go to Nashville!
We all agreed that this was our favorite meal in Nashville. We actually stumbled upon this restaurant randomly while we were shopping at 12 South. As soon as we saw the menu, we were so excited to eat here. The tacos were $2.50 or $3.50 each, and a rice bowl was less than $10. This was literally the best food we had on the whole trip! We actually almost came here again the next night, but it was Friday, and they didn’t have any reservations left. The best part was that almost everything on the menu was gluten free and there were so many vegan options! When we left, we talked to the manager to tell her how much we liked it, and we happily found out that there are Bartaco locations in a bunch of other states. We can’t wait to have it again!
Hattie B’s Hot Chicken
Everyone said we had to go to Hattie B’s. There are locations all over the city but we went to the one on Charlotte Ave because we heard it was less busy. There was still a line far out the door, but it moved surprisingly quick! We were worried there wouldn’t be anything for me to eat, as a vegetarian, but there were several different sides that were filling. A few sides were perfect for me and filled me up, but we recommend sharing a plate if you are getting chicken. There is so much food, and it is all pretty heavy! The food was so good, so we are going to join the chorus of people telling you to try it!
To be honest, we came to UP for the views. It’s on top of a hotel in the Gulch and we went just as the sun was setting. It was the perfect place to take pictures of the skyline! There weren’t many options for me and the food was a little pricey, but it was delicious and definitely worth it for the views! Even going in December, it wasn’t too cold with the heaters on outside. Our favorite thing was the poutine, which we ate too fast to get a picture of.
Milk and Honey
We came to Milk and Honey several times. Once was just to look at their shop. There is a bookshelf of items such as cookbooks, jam, coasters, mugs, and more. That’s one bad thing about packing in a carry on - there’s not enough room to take back souvenirs! We went back a few days later for dinner. We shared a hummus platter, which was delicious. Nick even liked it and he usually refuses to eat hummus. Liz and Mike got salads, and Nick and I shared the curry roasted cauliflower. It was so good, I keep daydreaming about recreating it at home. Cauliflower, sweet potatoes, quinoa, all in a curry sauce! We saw most people getting the wood-fired pizza - if we had been hungrier, we definitely would have tried it, because it looked so good. We came back another day for dessert - cupcakes, homemade poptarts, and hot chocolate.
The Grilled Cheeserie
The Grilled Cheeserie was one of the first places we heard about and it quickly became high on our list of lunch places. It is a create-your-own grilled cheese bar - you get to choose your bread, cheese, and any extras. Liz and Mike added chicken to theirs and shared it. Nick had a regular grilled cheese with avocado, and I had gluten free bread, vegan cheese, and pesto aoili. They are also known for their tater tots and milkshakes (there’s a vegan coconut milkshake I wish I had tried!).
Burger Republic was the first restaurant we tried when we reached Nashville. There were so many different burgers that we all tried a different one! Nick had to get The Tennessee Burger as it’s rated in the top 50 burgers in the United States. I was happy to see they had homemade veggie burgers and gluten free buns! We were so hungry from our day of traveling that we ate it too fast to take many pictures, but we enjoyed it. We’d definitely recommend it if you are in the mood for burgers!
We had heard about Proper Bagel for a while and saved it for our last breakfast in Nashville while we were in Hillsboro. Since we live about 40 minutes from NYC, we were excited to see if these New York style bagels lived up to their name. Since I’m gluten free, I was really excited for their gluten free carrot cake waffles, but unfortunately they were out. I was glad to see they had plenty of gluten free and vegan options and ended up having vegan sausage on a gluten free focaccia bread. Everyone else had bagel sandwiches and loved them. Liz said her meal, which was avocado toast but on a bagel, was one of her favorites of our entire trip! We also enjoyed sitting at a long table and chatting with the man sitting next to us, who told us about his travels to Asia and Australia and gave us a bunch of travel tips. We love making connections on our trips - it’s one of the best parts of traveling!