Discover the Best Places to Eat in Nashville: A Food Lover's Guide to the Music City

Places To Eat In Nashville

Nashville, also known as the Music City, is not just famous for its vibrant music scene but also for its diverse and thriving food culture. With a rich culinary heritage deeply rooted in Southern cuisine, Nashville has become a food lover's paradise. From iconic dishes to trendy cafes and fine dining experiences, this city offers something for every palate. Whether you're a local or a visitor, exploring Nashville's food scene is an absolute must-do to truly experience the flavors and culture of this dynamic city.

Iconic Southern Cuisine

When it comes to iconic Southern cuisine, Nashville has a lot to offer. From mouthwatering barbecue to classic comfort foods, this city is a haven for food lovers seeking authentic Southern flavors.

One must-try dish in Nashville is hot chicken. This spicy fried chicken dish originated in the city and has gained popularity worldwide. Prince's Hot Chicken Shack and Hattie B's Hot Chicken are two of the most famous spots to indulge in this fiery delicacy.

Another staple of Southern cuisine is biscuits and gravy. Loveless Cafe is renowned for its fluffy biscuits smothered in rich sausage gravy, making it a go-to spot for locals and tourists alike.

For those craving soul food, Arnold's Country Kitchen is a must-visit. This cafeteria-style restaurant serves up delicious Southern favorites like fried catfish, collard greens, and cornbread.

To experience true Southern hospitality, head to Monell's Dining & Catering. This family-style restaurant serves up traditional Southern dishes like fried chicken, country ham, and black-eyed peas, all enjoyed at communal tables where diners can share stories and make new friends.

Nashville also boasts several historic meat-and-three restaurants where you can choose from a selection of meats and three sides. The Loveless Cafe and Puckett's Grocery & Restaurant are popular choices for this Southern dining tradition.

No visit to Nashville would be complete without trying some classic Tennessee barbecue. Martin's Bar-B-Que Joint is known for its slow-smoked meats and mouthwatering sauces that will leave you craving more.

Whether you're a fan of traditional Southern fare or looking to try something new with a twist on these classics, Nashville's food scene has something for everyone who wants to savor the flavors of the South.

Hot Chicken Joints

Nashville is famous for its hot chicken, a fiery and flavorful dish that has become a staple of the city's food scene. Hot chicken joints can be found all over Nashville, each offering their own unique take on this spicy delicacy.

One of the most well-known hot chicken spots in Nashville is Prince's Hot Chicken Shack. Established in the 1940s, Prince's is credited with inventing hot chicken and continues to serve up their signature dish today. The chicken is marinated in a spicy blend of seasonings, fried to perfection, and served with pickles and white bread to help cool down the heat.

Hattie B's Hot Chicken is another popular destination for hot chicken lovers. With multiple locations across the city, Hattie B's offers different spice levels ranging from mild to "Shut the Cluck Up!" Their crispy and juicy chicken paired with Southern sides like mac and cheese or collard greens make for a mouthwatering meal.

For those looking for a twist on traditional hot chicken, Bolton's Spicy Chicken & Fish is a must-visit. Known for their extra crispy crust and bold flavors, Bolton's offers both hot chicken and fish options. Be prepared for some serious heat as their spice levels can be quite intense.

No matter which hot chicken joint you choose to visit in Nashville, you're guaranteed an unforgettable culinary experience. These establishments have perfected the art of creating crispy, spicy, and delicious hot chicken that will leave your taste buds craving more. So don't miss out on trying this iconic Nashville dish during your visit to Music City!

Farm-to-Table Restaurants

Farm-to-table restaurants have become increasingly popular in Nashville, offering diners a chance to experience the freshest and most sustainable ingredients. These establishments prioritize sourcing their produce, meat, and dairy products from local farms and suppliers. By doing so, they not only support the local economy but also ensure that their dishes are of the highest quality.

One such farm-to-table gem is "The Farm House," located in downtown Nashville. This restaurant takes pride in its commitment to using seasonal ingredients sourced directly from nearby farms. Their menu changes regularly to reflect the flavors of each season, ensuring that patrons can savor the best that nature has to offer.

Another noteworthy establishment is "Husk." With a focus on Southern cuisine, this farm-to-table restaurant works closely with local farmers and artisans to create dishes that showcase the region's rich culinary heritage. From heirloom vegetables to pasture-raised meats, every ingredient at Husk tells a story of sustainable farming practices and exceptional taste.

For those seeking a more rustic dining experience, "Lockeland Table" is a must-visit. This cozy neighborhood eatery prides itself on serving dishes made with locally sourced ingredients whenever possible. Their commitment to supporting local farmers shines through in every bite, making it a favorite among Nashville locals and visitors alike.

These farm-to-table restaurants not only provide delicious meals but also foster a deeper connection between diners and the food they consume. By knowing where their ingredients come from, patrons can appreciate the hard work and dedication that goes into producing high-quality food.

If you're passionate about supporting local agriculture while indulging in delectable cuisine, be sure to add these farm-to-table restaurants to your Nashville dining itinerary.

Food Trucks and Street Food

Nashville's food scene is not limited to traditional restaurants. The city is also known for its vibrant food truck culture, offering a wide variety of delicious street food options. These mobile kitchens can be found throughout the city, serving up everything from gourmet burgers to ethnic delights.

Must-Try Food Trucks:

  • The Grilled Cheeserie: Specializes in mouthwatering grilled cheese sandwiches with creative twists.
  • Hattie B's Hot Chicken on Wheels: Serves up Nashville's signature fiery hot chicken.
  • Mas Tacos Por Favor: Offers authentic Mexican street food made with fresh ingredients and bold flavors.
  • The Cupcake Collection: Offers an array of delectable cupcakes in various flavors.

Exploring Nashville's food trucks and street food scene allows you to experience the city's culinary diversity in a casual and fun-filled atmosphere. So grab some napkins and get ready to indulge in some truly unforgettable bites!

International Flavors

Nashville's food scene is not limited to Southern cuisine; it also offers a diverse range of international flavors that will satisfy any adventurous palate. From authentic Mexican taquerias to vibrant Indian curry houses, the Music City has it all.

For lovers of Mexican cuisine, Mas Tacos Por Favor is a must-visit. This popular eatery serves up mouthwatering tacos filled with flavorful meats and fresh ingredients. Don't miss their famous fried avocado taco – it's a true delight!

If you're craving some spicy Thai dishes, head over to The Smiling Elephant. Known for its authentic flavors and generous portions, this family-owned restaurant offers an array of traditional Thai dishes that will transport your taste buds to the streets of Bangkok.

For those seeking a taste of India, Woodlands Indian Vegetarian Cuisine is the place to go. This vegetarian restaurant serves up an extensive menu of flavorful curries, dosas, and biryanis that are sure to impress even the most discerning Indian food connoisseurs.

Craving sushi? Look no further than Samurai Sushi. With its fresh fish and creative rolls, this Japanese restaurant is a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Be sure to try their signature Samurai roll – a delectable combination of tuna, salmon, avocado, and spicy mayo.

For lovers of Mediterranean cuisine, Epice is a must-visit. This Lebanese restaurant offers an array of delicious dishes such as hummus, falafel, and shawarma. The cozy ambiance and friendly staff make it the perfect spot for a casual lunch or dinner.

Whether you're in the mood for Mexican, Thai, Indian, Japanese or Mediterranean cuisine – Nashville has something to offer every international food lover. So venture beyond Southern fare and explore the diverse culinary landscape that awaits you in Music City!

Trendy Cafes and Bakeries

Trendy Cafes and Bakeries in Nashville offer a delightful culinary experience for food lovers. The city is home to a vibrant coffee culture, with numerous cafes serving up expertly brewed artisanal coffees. Baristas here take their craft seriously, ensuring each cup is a work of art.

For those with a sweet tooth, Nashville's bakeries are a must-visit. These establishments pride themselves on using fresh, locally sourced ingredients to create mouthwatering pastries, cakes, and bread. From flaky croissants to decadent cupcakes, there's something to satisfy every craving.

One popular spot is Bongo Java, the city's oldest coffeehouse known for its cozy atmosphere and organic fair-trade coffee beans. Another favorite is Dozen Bakery, famous for its delectable pastries made from scratch daily.

Frothy Monkey is another top choice among locals and tourists alike. This trendy cafe not only offers exceptional coffee but also serves up delicious brunch options like avocado toast and breakfast burritos.

For those seeking unique flavors, Five Daughters Bakery is a must-visit. Known for their 100-layer donuts (a hybrid of croissant and donut), these indulgent treats come in various flavors such as maple glaze and chocolate sea salt.

Nashville's trendy cafes and bakeries are not just about the food; they also provide inviting spaces to relax or catch up with friends. Many establishments feature cozy seating areas, outdoor patios, or even live music performances.

Whether you're looking for a caffeine fix or a sweet treat, Nashville's trendy cafes and bakeries have got you covered. Don't miss out on exploring these culinary gems during your visit to the Music City!

Vegetarian and Vegan Options

When it comes to vegetarian and vegan options, Nashville has plenty to offer. The city has seen a rise in plant-based dining establishments that cater to the growing demand for meat-free options. Many restaurants now have dedicated menus or sections specifically for vegetarians and vegans.

One popular spot is The Wild Cow, located in East Nashville. This vegetarian restaurant offers a diverse menu with dishes like black bean burgers, buffalo tofu wraps, and tempeh tacos. Their focus on fresh ingredients and creative flavors makes it a favorite among locals and visitors alike.

Another must-visit is Sunflower Cafe, known for its vegan comfort food. From their famous "chicken" fried tofu to their hearty lentil loaf, this cozy cafe serves up delicious plant-based dishes that even non-vegetarians will enjoy.

For those looking for a more upscale experience, Avo is the place to go. This trendy eatery specializes in raw, vegan cuisine. Their innovative dishes include zucchini noodles with walnut pesto and cashew cheese-stuffed mushrooms. Avo's commitment to using organic and locally sourced ingredients ensures a truly fresh and flavorful dining experience.

Nashville also boasts several Indian restaurants that offer extensive vegetarian options. Woodlands Indian Vegetarian Cuisine is a standout choice, serving authentic South Indian dishes like dosas (savory pancakes) and vegetable biryani.

Whether you're a vegetarian or simply looking to explore plant-based cuisine, Nashville has an array of options that will satisfy your cravings. From casual cafes to fine dining establishments, the city's food scene continues to evolve to accommodate all dietary preferences.

Fine Dining Experiences

Nashville is not only known for its vibrant music scene, but also for its exceptional fine dining experiences. The city boasts a range of upscale restaurants that offer exquisite culinary creations and impeccable service.

One such establishment is The Catbird Seat, a renowned restaurant that offers an intimate dining experience with a front-row seat to the action in the open kitchen. Led by talented chefs, the menu at The Catbird Seat features innovative dishes that showcase seasonal ingredients sourced from local farms.

Another must-visit fine dining spot is Husk Nashville, located in a historic mansion. This award-winning restaurant focuses on celebrating Southern cuisine with a modern twist. Using ingredients sourced from their own farm, Husk Nashville offers dishes that pay homage to the region's rich culinary heritage.

For those seeking a truly unique dining experience, The Capitol Grille is the place to go. Situated in the iconic Hermitage Hotel, this upscale restaurant combines elegant ambiance with exceptional cuisine. Known for its commitment to sustainability, The Capitol Grille sources ingredients from local farmers and artisans to create dishes that highlight the flavors of Tennessee.

If you're looking for a taste of Italy in Nashville, look no further than Giovanni Ristorante. This upscale Italian eatery offers an extensive menu featuring classic dishes made with fresh and authentic ingredients. With its elegant decor and attentive service, Giovanni Ristorante provides an unforgettable fine dining experience.

Nashville's fine dining scene is not limited to these establishments alone. From contemporary American cuisine to French-inspired fare, there are plenty of options for food enthusiasts looking to indulge in an extraordinary culinary experience.

Whether you're celebrating a special occasion or simply looking to treat yourself to an unforgettable meal, Nashville's fine dining scene has something for everyone. So sit back, relax, and savor every bite as you embark on a gastronomic journey through Music City's finest restaurants.

Unique Dining Experiences

Nashville offers a wide range of dining options, from Southern classics to international flavors:

  • Hot chicken joints
  • Farm-to-table restaurants
  • Food trucks and street food
  • International cuisine
  • Trendy cafes and bakeries
  • Vegetarian and vegan options
  • Fine dining establishments
  • Unique dining experiences (rooftop restaurants, speakeasies)


Nashville's food scene is a testament to the city's vibrant culture and culinary creativity. With its diverse offerings and innovative concepts, Nashville is a must-visit destination for any food enthusiast.