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Nashville reccos for VD for travelers?

Umm, that's Valentine's Day, by the way :-) We'll be heading south to the Fl panhandle and plan to spend the night in Nashville on the way down. We don't have hotel reservations yet, as we'd prefer to stay near where we eat (and where we eat matters more!)

We like all kinds of food, can be happy with anything from bbq to fried chicken to haute cuisine, have no particular dislikes (except crappy food), and we love good wine, but we're picky (prefer Italian, French, and Austrian wine but that's not a deal breaker, we can drink something else).

Come on, TN hounds, give us your best recommendations, along with the odds of getting a reservation for VD night. TIA!


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  1. Try Rumours or Rumours East, both lovely wine bars with great wine lists and usually really great food. Hernan Borda, the Argentine head chef, does some really beautiful things with fish. I also highly recommend the steak salad, and the white bean hummous. Delicious. Last year we ate at the original location (Rumours on 12th Avenue South) the day after Valentine's and they still had some of the specials he had created for the previous night. Really beautiful. If you made reservations at Rumours East, you could stay at Top o'Woodland, a bed and breakfast just four blocks down the same road. I would guess that neither restaurant nor hotel are completely booked for V. day yet. Good luck! Report back!

    2 Replies
    1. re: delaneymae

      Thanks, I appreciate the lead! And my husband adores Argentinean Malbec; do you know if they have a good selection?

      1. re: Niki in Dayton

        They do have several options in Argentinean Malbec, I just checked!

    2. Our local cuisine is meat-n-three, usually served only at lunch (but sometimes also breakfast) and is booze-free. Search these boards for Monell's, Arnold's, Sylvan Park, Silver Sands and Green Hills Cafeteria. Fancier food look for reviews on Mambu, Flyte, Ombi, Zola (almost no chance of a reservation), Capitol Grille (ditto), Watermark, Radius 10. All these are centrally located. Slightly north of downtown is a pretty and historic neighborhood called Germantown with three good places: Mad Platter, City House (brand new) and Germantown Cafe. All are worth a try for reservations. East Nashville is great, but there aren't many accomodations anywhere nearby. Good luck! Happy VD!

      1. To get a truely Nashville night out check out The Blue Bird Cafe. They have ok food, honestly not that memorable, but it is hands down one of the coolest places I've been recently. A really fun evening and unlike anywhere else on Valentine's. But you will want to reserve a table http://www.bluebirdcafe.com They do two seatings.

        1 Reply
        1. re: bubblet4me

          Bluebird Cafe is indeed interesting for music, but considering the OP listed no mention of appreciating a certain kind of (or any kind of) music, I have to say that the Bluebird could be a huge disappointment, though i agree that it has its charms. We are big on our meat-n-three's down here, and that could be a fun valentine's experience, but for something more upscale I would try Margot cafe, Park Cafe, Flyte, or even Capitol Grille. they will all be doing special Valentine's day menus I'm sure.

        2. I just got a reservation for VD at Ombi, which has a Valentine prix fixe for cheap and also a la carte. I love that place -- food and service are good, the people are fun, decor's striking and memorable, and the prices are reasonable, so the place is full of writers, restaurant people and other who want food food but don't have the budget for a $200 meal. Kim hand-picks the wines on her list, so there are some unusual ones, some bargains. She'll make you a personal wine recommendation for your meal. It's lively and the food's great. ombirestaurant.com

          3 Replies
          1. re: fluffernutter

            I made reservations at Rumors based on an earlier recommendation (thanks, delaneymae!), but will look at Ombi which sounds intriguing as well. We've been to Nashville before and actually eaten at the BlueBird Cafe, but that's not quite what I have in mind for a romantic evening :-)

            1. re: Niki in Dayton

              I've now decided on Andrew Chadwick's at Rutledge Hill. It has gotten relatively little buzz around Nashville but it promises to be interesting, and the chef has some serious credentials. Unfortunately I'll be eating there the day before without a special menu because on Valentine's I'll be cooking for lucky folks like you!

              1. re: notgreg

                notgreg, please let us know what you think about Chadwick's. I am very intrigued by that place.

          2. You have my vote for best thread title on CH!!!

            1. Thanks, folks. I originally made reservations at Rumors, but after pursuing the on-line menus and the other reviews from Nashville hounds, made reservations at Ombi instead. It sounds like an interesting place, and even more importantly, my SO liked the on-line menu better. I'll report back after our visit!

              5 Replies
                1. re: Niki in Dayton

                  And Valentine's Day is the final night for co-partner Kim Totzke, who is outgoing, lively, fun and brilliant with food. She is leaving for a daytime restaurant gig, and partner Laura will be cooking. But it will be hard for her to duplicate Kim's style and service. So there will be a lot of fun people there, a little emotion, maybe some surprises. You picked a good night.

                  1. re: fluffernutter

                    Thanks; I appreciate the insight and will keep that in mind!

                    1. re: fluffernutter

                      I hope you enjoyed everything Thursday night. Sorry I couln't come out and say Hi, but we all enjoyed cooking for such a great crowd. I hope you return to enjoy a slightly different style and service. Only slightly, though, as Kim and I have been equal collaborators since the beginning.

                      1. re: cheflkw

                        Thanks; it was wonderful. I posted a brief reaction (Ombi Nashville Yum!) on 17 Feb but we were traveling and on vacation, so I didn't have time to post much. He had the mussels, I had the gnocchi (we always share tastes). The gnocchi were fabulous and the mussels were very good. He had the French Onion Soup which he *adored*, I had the salad. He had the tuna, I had the NY Strip. That was the only slight misstep - the tuna he ordered rare was served medium well, but the server quickly corrected that and brought him a hot rare tuna plate. He had the creme brulee, I had the sticky toffee bread pudding - not sure which was better. I really enjoyed your wine list as well, and we had a glass of several sparkling (the Cerdon de Bugey and the Alsace rose) along with a half bottle of McCrea granache with the mains, and shared a glass of the Italian dessert wine (the name escapes me). Service, food, ambience, you got it all going on, girlfriend!