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Jul 16, 2007 10:53 AM

Nashville area restaurant/food supply?

My husband and I are moving within the year to Gallatin, TN, which is about a half hour northeast of Nashville. Are there any stores in the general Nashville area that correspond to a chain in the West called "Smart and Final"? Smart and Final is a kind of combo store selling restaurant supplies (no large appliances or extensive dinnerware) and food items. Nowhere near as big as a Costco/Sam's Club and not as trendy or specialized as Trader Joe's, but very useful nonetheless. It's a place I'll miss...Thanks for any responses.

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  1. There's a place on Charlotte Avenue in West Nashville that was formerly the public outlet of Robert Orr/Sysco foods. Society ladies went there to buy tartlet shells by the case and whole tenderloins and giant lasagnas to serve 50 for the church supper. It's called Nashville Cash and Carry now, I think and the selection is similar. Restaurant-size cans, jars, big- sizes of things. It's on the historic, quaint part of Charlotte near 46th Avenue and Richland Park. That what you're looking for?
    Nearby (well, within about 10 blocks) is an Aldi, which is a German-based chain selling basic groceries (and some extras) for about 30 percent less than traditional grocery stores. They don't carry a lot of fancy or niche products -- no fresh herbs or flavored coffees or whole wheat flour or sugar-free fruit spread -- but there are occasional surprises like blue cheese crumbles, soy milk and smoked almonds.
    Gallatin is a long way out of town, as you know, and really, it's a world unto itself. My cousins live in Gallatin, and I only saw them once a year at most. A lot of Gallatin-ers hardly ever make it to Nashville. It's actually just a close to go to Kentucky, where the sales tax on food is lower.

    3 Replies
    1. re: fluffernutter

      Oh, THANK YOU so much, fluffernutter! I was afraid no one was going to reply to this. I read this to my husband (born in Jonesborough and lived most of his life in Johnson City) and he was surprised that Robert Orr/Sysco used to have an outlet. He's used that company in his business. For certain, we will check out Nashville Cash and Carry as it sounds very similar to Smart and Final. One of the SF products we just love and use all the time is called "manufacturing cream". It's like heavy whipping cream but it has not been subjected to ultra-pasteurization. It tastes so much better than the cream you can find in grocery stores. Restaurants and bakeries use it all the time. We'd seen the Aldi stores but had no idea what they were. We'll check those out, too. Yes, we know Gallatin is not exactly next door to Nashville, but we figure there will "excursion" days after we get settled in. And, if you are familiar with good food shopping sites across the border in Kentucky, we'd love to hear about those, too. Like most of the people who frequent this site, we have a fondness for trying what's off the beaten track - and that doesn't have to be Dean and Deluca either! We're very much looking forward to local farmers' markets and such. Thanks again.

      1. re: rexsreine

        Just north of Gallatin in Kentucky is Bowling Green.
        About 45 mins north on I-65, Exit 22.
        Last week a Gordon Food Service (GFS) just opened here.
        We stopped by this past weekend and they had the typical bulk items, frozen meat and dairy product. I don't much about this chain but it might interest you.
        It's not a very large store, but packed full of items
        Also a quick plug for BG......
        If you visit BG try a couple of my favorite places for lunch or dinner:
        The Brickyard Cafe and Mandolin, both are located in downtown BG on
        Chestnut Street.
        Mariah's Downtown:
        Montana Grill on Scottsville Rd.:

        1. re: kelomaki

          Thanks, kelomaki, for the recommendations. My husband says BG is a lovely city and we will both enjoy trying your favorite lunch and dinner places. GFS sounds like a fun exploration, too. I can hardly wait to move! So many wonderful places in the South to visit that will be just hours away.

    2. Ginny,
      My question to folks that are relocating to Gallatin TN is always, what brings you to this area. We relocated here 11 years ago from Florida and have seen such growth and development. The businesses are flourishing. Let me know just what time frame you are looking at.