When you think of Nashville, it’s hard to ignore the allure of its iconic BBQ, mouthwatering hot chicken, and classic meat ‘n’ threes. But did you know that Nashville’s culinary scene goes beyond these staples? The city boasts a vibrant array of chef-driven restaurants that are redefining its gastronomic landscape. From James Beard Award nominees to innovative takes on traditional Southern fare, these establishments are a must-visit to truly experience Nashville’s diverse flavors.
Photo Credits to: Audrey
Audrey: A True Gem Among the Best Restaurants in Nashville
Nestled among the best restaurants in Nashville, Audrey stands out as a true gem. Named after Chef Sean Brock’s beloved grandmother, this establishment marries Appalachian roots with contemporary techniques. It’s an experience that melds refinement with familiarity, where a $200 bottle of wine pairs perfectly with dishes like greasy beans and sour corn. Audrey is more than just a restaurant—it’s a narrative that celebrates food, heritage, and memories.
Photo Credits to: Drusie & Darr by Jean-Georges
Culinary Elegance at Drusie & Darr
Dining at Drusie & Darr is a journey into culinary elegance. This modern hotspot pays homage to tradition while embracing modernity. Led by Chef Kelsi Armijo and with Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s influence, the restaurant seamlessly blends Asian and European influences with local Tennessee ingredients. The open kitchen adds a touch of theater, making every visit a captivating experience.
Photo Credits to: City House
City House: Fusion of Flavors in Music City
City House is where culinary fusion meets Nashville’s vibrant music scene. Chef Tandy Wilson’s Italian-Southern creations are a symphony of flavors. Thin-crust pizzas, inventive combinations, and a communal dining atmosphere make this restaurant a hub for food enthusiasts. Among the best restaurants in Nashville, City House delivers an unforgettable dining journey.
Photo Credits to: Lyra
Lyra: A Melodic Blend of Middle Eastern Flavors
Lyra is a harmonious fusion of Middle Eastern inspirations, offering a melodic blend of Lebanon and Israel’s culinary traditions. Created by Chef Hrant Arakelian and Elizabeth Endicott, Lyra’s menu transports diners to the heart of the Middle East. The inviting ambiance and vibrant patio provide the perfect backdrop for savoring authentic flavors.
Photo Credits to: Henrietta Red
Henrietta Red: Coastal Charms and Creative Cuisine
Henrietta Red, adorned with James Beard Foundation recognition, celebrates coastal cuisine with a creative twist. Chef Julia Sullivan’s menu boasts a raw oyster bar and inventive small plates. From sunchokes to smoked mackerel toast, each dish captures the essence of coastal charm and culinary innovation.
Photo Credits to: Trey Tollison
Margot Café & Bar: A Timeless Culinary Haven
Margot Café & Bar has established itself as a timeless culinary haven in East Nashville. With French-inspired cooking and a commitment to locally sourced ingredients, Margot McCormack’s restaurant offers an ever-changing menu that reflects the day’s harvest. It’s a celebration of tradition, quality, and authentic flavors.
Photo Credits to: Andrea Behrends
The Catbird Seat: An Intimate Showcase of Culinary Art
The Catbird Seat offers an intimate showcase of culinary artistry, placing diners at the heart of the action. Chef Brian Baxter’s innovative menu, featuring local ingredients and creative pairings, epitomizes Nashville’s culinary evolution. With an immersive dining experience, The Catbird Seat stands as a testament to Nashville’s culinary innovation.
Photo Credits to: Locust Nashville
Locust: Crafting Culinary Excellence
Locust, a hidden gem among the best restaurants in Nashville, is known for its limited daily options and meticulous attention to detail. Chef Trevor Moran’s dedication to culinary craftsmanship shines through, making each visit an extraordinary experience. From dumplings to kakigori, Locust embodies the art of culinary excellence.
The Continental: Timeless Elegance Reimagined
The Continental, nestled within the Grand Hyatt, reimagines timeless elegance with a modern twist. Amid plush interiors and attentive service, this restaurant pays homage to classic hotel dining. With iconic dishes like oysters and prime rib, The Continental captures the essence of sophistication.
Photo Credits to: International Market
International Market: Thai Tradition Meets Innovation
International Market celebrates Thai culinary tradition while embracing innovation. Run by siblings Arnold and Anna Myint, this eatery offers a blend of old favorites and innovative Thai dishes. Among the best restaurants in Nashville, International Market invites diners to explore a harmonious fusion of tradition and modernity.
Photo Credits to: Pelican & Pig
Pelican & Pig: Wood-Fired Mastery and Sustainability
Pelican & Pig stands out for its wood-fired mastery and commitment to sustainability. Chef Nick and Audra Guidry’s culinary artistry shines as dishes are cooked over an open flame. With inventive cooking techniques and a seasonal menu, Pelican & Pig creates a symphony of flavors that resonates with diners.
Photo credits: Burgers, Barbecue, and everything else
Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack: A Spicy Nashville Tradition
Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack, an iconic Nashville institution, preserves the city’s spicy culinary tradition. With a range of heat levels and a rich history, it’s a must-visit among the best restaurants in Nashville. Patrons are invited to relish the fiery flavors that define Nashville’s gastronomic identity.
Photo Credits to: love local, 50best discovery, NFocusmagazine.com, prince’s hot chicken_nashville
Embark on a Culinary Voyage through Nashville
Nashville’s culinary scene is a mosaic of flavors, creativity, and heritage. Among the best restaurants in Nashville, each establishment offers a distinct perspective on the city’s culinary evolution. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, embark on a culinary voyage that celebrates Nashville’s rich gastronomic diversity.