Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Nashville Wouldn't Be Nashville Without You

This past weekend I spent just over 36 hours in Nashville with my friend Alicia celebrating my 28th birthday.  It was a relatively low key weekend, and if you follow me on SnapChat (nrthmeetsouthe) or Instagram (briannemcc) you've pretty much seen all that I'm about to show you.  But, you don't all follow me and a recap was promised so a recap you shall get.

Where We Stayed
I'm going to start off by saying this is not a recommendation, just a fact.  Originally we were going to do AirBNB but I procrastinated too long & everything was either gone or ass expensive.  Why?  Well the Predators played at home, the Titans played at home, it was Vanderbilt's homecoming, & it's Nashville.  

We stayed at an America's Best Value Inn.  It was about a 10-15 min drive from pretty much everywhere we wanted to go.  We stayed there though because despite both of us approaching 30 rapidly, we still stay at places that are just above needing hobo stab insurance.  Kidding.  Kinda.  We lived.  Actually, despite being next to a Hooters & a sketchier looking hotel, the inside had definitely been recently remodled & it served it's purpose.  Plus it was just over $150 for both nights.

There are no pictures because it was nothing was just another motel.

Where We Ate
This is obviously the most important part.  Any trip that one goes on with me is quickly all about food.  What can I say?  Food is life.

We got into Nashville around supper time & we were both starving so before hotel check in or anything, food was first.  We hit up Hattie B's Hot Chicken on Charlotte because when in Nashville...  Seriously y'all I'm so glad we went there.  We both got the small dark plate, medium heat, with pimento mac & cheese and red skin potato salad.  It was so good.  The chicken & potato salad were to die for.  Just thinking about it right now is making me hungry.

We ate again late that night after bar at The Italian Kitchen.  This wasn't our best food choice of the trip.  We didn't really have a choice though.  It was the only place within walking distance of the bar we had been at that was open at 2 am.  Don't get me wrong, the food wasn't bad, but it wasn't stellar.  For starters we ordered a small pizza...they accidentally made a calzone which was supposedly more expensive.  They asked if we wanted our pizza instead but we were hungry & tired so we ate the calzone.  It was mediocre & not worth the $20 we had given them... I wouldn't go back.

The next morning we went & got coffee and breakfast from the hotel quickly before getting ready to head out for our day in Nashville.

While out & about we both decided we need more caffiene, and caffine that tasted better than hotel coffee.  We stumbled across Bond Coffee while we were in The Gulch.  Despite not being a fan of anything pumpkin, the barista talked me into ordering October Sky.  Surprisingly it was really good.  It was a mix of pumpkin spice & salted caramel.  The pumpkin wasn't overpowering at all which is what made it great to me.

Lunch time on Saturday we found ourselves in East Nashville.  We talked about burgers but decided on tacos.  This was a solid choice.  I looked up best tacos in East Nashville & we wound up at Mas Tacos Por Favor.  This place was awesome.  The line was out the door & we quickly understood why.  Despite it's unassuming appearance, the food was incredible.  We both got a pulled pork taco, carne molida taco, elote, & a Mexican coke.  So so good.  I had elote for the first time this summer & I'm now obsessed.  Theirs did not disappoint.  It is cash only but the prices are very cheap.

We knew we wanted to be on Broadway Saturday night so we just ate at one of the bars there.  We decided on Honky Tonk Central.  We each just got a burger with tator tots.  I got the Cowboy Burger which came with provolone and jalapenos & then I added bacon...because bacon.  It was really good & the tots were the perfect crispiness.

Sunday morning we had intentions of going to The Flipside for their massive bloody mary but they didn't open until 11 & we needed to be on the road before then.  When we were in The Gulch the previous day we had seen a long line outside of Biscuit Love so we decided to go there.  We wanted to get a bloody mary from there as well but because we had arrived before 10 am & it was a Sunday, we couldn't get alcohol.  The food totally made up for it though.  We both got the Southern Benny & holy shit their sausage gravy.  The door guy had talked up their Chronic Bacon so I got a side of that as well.  I wasn't impressed.  The benny was more than enough food though so I wasn't too disappointed.

What We Did
We had no real plan for Nashville.  We knew we wouldn't be there for long so we didn't book any tours or create a long list of things we wanted to do.  Instead we just sort of went with the flow.  We knew we wanted to do karaoke so that's what we did Friday night.  After eating at Hatti B's & getting ready at the hotel we took an Uber to Ms. Kelli's Karaoke Bar.  We met a really fun couple there that we wound up hanging out with.  Alicia sang a little Merle Haggard & Kelli Pickler.  Together we sang 'Somethin Bad' by Miranda Lambert & Carrie Underwood because it's kind of our song.  We sang, we danced, we drank more than we intended, & spent too much money on an Uber back to the hotel after we hit up The Italian Kitchen.  Oh & those pickles?  I deemed those my purse pickles.  I love pickles...and they were extras from Hatti B's which were already in a handy to go container so I put them in my purse.  And yes, I ate them while at the bar.  No shame.  Probably going to make that a new thing actually...

Saturday was our day to really do whatever we were going to do.  Our only real plan was to find some murals.  So after our hotel breakfast of mini muffins & bad coffee, find some murals we did.  We went to The Gulch.  We went to East Nashville.  We went to some train tracks.  We went to South 12th.  In between finding murals is also when we got coffee at Bond Coffee and ate lunch at Mas Tacos Por Favor.

In between East Nashville and South 12th we hit up Centennial Park to see the Parthenon & enjoy the beautiful weather.  It was great to be able to enjoy the fresh air, see some leaves that were changing colors, and even hear the end of an impromptu performance by a couple of musicians.  The random musicians playing everywhere was probably one of my favorite parts of Nashville.

While in the South 12th area of Nashville we found a Sprinkles Cupcake ATM.  We both were wanting something sweet & this was on my "Fun in DFW" list so when we came across Sprinkles we had to make a pit stop.  While waiting for the line to go down for the I Believe in Nashville mural we sat on a bench eating our double chocolate cupcakes.  So sweet but so good!  I considered this a check off for my to do in Dallas even though we were in Nashville.  However, the cupcake was so good that I might just have to hit up the one in Dallas as well.

After South 12th we decided to head back to the hotel to relax for a bit & get ready for supper/going out that night.  As soon as we were ready we called an Uber to take us to Broadway.  Traffic was insane because of everything that was going on in town so we just had the driver let us out once we got close.  Neither of us were starving yet so we found the walk of fame & then tried to find the Johnny Cash & Willie Nelson murals that we hadn't found earlier in the day.  We couldn't find the Willie Nelson mural at all but we did find the Johnny Cash was mostly covered due to construction.

Finally we decided to walk our way to Honky Tonk Central for dinner.  After we were done eating we spent some time there listening to music on the first & third floors.  We quickly decided to find a new place.  I found a place that said they had line dancing, the Wildhorse Saloon.  We walked in the door & right back out the door.  It was bright & the were line dancing to some modern pop thanks.  We were briefly drawn into a couple of other bars simply because of the music we heard, one being Benchmark & the other one I don't recall the name of.  We then made our way to The Stage where we finished out the rest of our night.  While waiting for an Uber home we listened to Lexi Lew perform outside of some of the bars on Broadway.  That girl was good.  You should definitely give her a listen.

But Wait!  There's More! Memphis
The next morning we ate breakfast at Biscuit Love, failed to get more coffee from Bond Coffee because they're closed on Sundays, & then made the drive to Memphis.  Alicia had flown into Memphis because it was cheaper for her to fly into there than Nashville, & because I was driving through there since it was cheaper for me to drive to Nashville than it was for me to fly into there.  With it being a Sunday, & us not having a ton of time, we didn't really do much.  I took her to Beale Street so that she could see it since she had never been & also so that she could try some Memphis BBQ since she had never had it before.  We each got a bloody mary at Rum Boogie Cafe.  She also got a BBQ sandwich but I decided not to eat there.  I am definitely more of a Texas BBQ kind of girl & since I had already tried Memphis BBQ in the past I wanted to eat elsewhere.  After that we crossed the street & went to Silky O'Sullivans.  Silky O'Sullivans is actually where I spent part 2 of my 26th birthday/Halloween 2014.  We each got another drink & I got an order of oysters.  It had been so long.  It was a good choice.  We listened to some blue's music, ate, drank, talked, & then it was off the the airport.  I then made the remaining 7 hour drive back to Fort Worth.

I definitely want to go back to Nashville someday.  But next time with more time & money.


  1. My goodness gracious girl, you packed so much into this fun little getaway! I was so happy to see your smiling birthday face! Look at all that yummy food, looks delicious especially the chicken and potato salad! I'm so glad you had a good time and I would've loved to seeing you sing some karaoke! Have a great day

    1. Thank you so much! Haha no one really wants to see/hear me do karaoke. I only sing well when I'm alone & in the car. I want more of that chicken like now. I'm going to have to look up a recipe for hot chicken to make my own.

  2. Wow, you did so much in little time. Looks like Nashville was super fun. I recently had a pumpkin caramel latte and it was so good. I wish more places made them. Much prefer it to the psl.

  3. Y'all did so much! I love that you went to all the murals. All the food seriously looks amazing!

  4. Fun! Some of the best restaurants I have been too where places that looked unassuming and run-down. And some fancier, more "assuming" places have been the worst. I want to go to Centennial Park if we are ever in the Nashville area.