So, what’s Stu’s Stews’ problem? Watch the video (posted on Eater) and you’ll likely conclude that their, um, marketing could use a little help. Carrie helpfully suggests "You could at least get on like Twitter or something." That's a start, but I think they could probably use some new art on the truck as well. See for yourself.
Incidentally, “You vile cow!” is now my favorite phrase. Just in time for Christmas!
Every year, the nice folks at Saveur magazine do a gonzo issue called The Saveur 100, wherein they bring to you, gentle reader, items of deliciousness which you will want to buy, eat or generally get on a plane immediately to go see. This year's best bit of food travel porn is at No. 44, and it's the entire country of Norway. (Yes, it's ridiculous, but it's worth buying the print edition just for the photo edit on this spread alone.)
Flipping through, my jaw dropped when I got to No. 35 and found a pitch perfect description of the legendary Hap Townes restaurant. This entry focused on the stewed tomatoes and, incredibly, includes a recipe for them. The item was written by Jane and Michael Stern, better known as the folks behind a series of road food books and roadfood.com.
The recipe, which originally came from James Beverly "Little Hap" Townes' grandmother, is included in the back of the issue.
I had the opportunity to say au revoir but not adieu to both restaurants over the past week, and I suggest you consider doing the same. In a classy move, Chef Barlow has encouraged his kitchen and wait staff to partner up for a series of theme dinners where they collaborate on the menu. Part audition for new gigs and part tribute to Tayst's past (and tastes passed), these meals have been a nice way for diners to thank some of the people who have provided such pleasant experiences and memories over the years. I attended the dinner put on by Tayst sous chef William Gentry and server Scott Carrol. These two have been some of my favorites, and I was looking forward to see what food Chef William would present and the wines that Carrol would pair with them. The menu was spectacular:
turnip slaw, turnip gratin, St. Germain syrup
sweet sauce, sautéed vegetables
Potato Noodle Chicken Dumpling
greens, vegetable consume
Warm Duck Terrine
carrot, herbs, cherry goat yogurt
pancakes, cauliflower, Tennessee cheddar, lamb demiglace
chocolate truffles, strawberry
Happily, Barber has re-emerged with a restaurant project in Berry Hill, Patrick's Bistreaux at 2821 Bransford Ave., across from Monell's. After spending a couple years planning and building out the old house into a really attractive dining space, Barber recently opened for lunch only, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, with a limited soft-opening menu of po'boys, jambalaya and crawfish etoufee. He hopes to open for dinner soon, but currently is still looking for staff to work the evening shift. (So head on over if you're job-hunting.)
Using old family recipes and authentic Louisiana and Mississippi ingredients, Barber has created a great fast-casual dining experience that he intends to expand to table service once he opens for dinner. He imports the real deal Leidenheimer french bread for his sandwiches, giving his po'boys the combination of crunchiness and chewiness that only comes from Big Easy bakeries. On a recent visit, I sampled an excellent barbecue shrimp entree that he hopes to include on the menu soon. Served in a half sheet pan to hold in all the greasy goodness, the shrimp were piquantly seasoned, and slices of French bread made for excellent sauce-sopping.
The magazine said the "young talent in the world of edibles and potables" in America is so dynamic that the panel (Forbes editors and experts from the business scene) retired last year's list of honorees and came up with a completely new list of notables in the restaurant industry.
Goldberg, who runs Strategic Hospitality (including the nationally celebrated restaurant The Catbird Seat) with his brother Benjamin, is 29. Here's what Forbes says:
The Nashville native is slowly transforming his hometown into a dining destination with the multi-award winning chef's tasting room, The Catbird Seat, and a kitschy honky-tonk on Broadway called Paradise Park. He and co-owner Benjamin Goldberg currently own five businesses with a combined revenue of $10 million.
Peisker is 27 and opened Porter Road Butcher with his business partner Chris Carter. (They are both classically trained chefs who met working in the kitchen at Capitol Grille.)
Trained at Hyde Park's Culinary Institute of America, Peisker discovered his love for butchering as a sous chef at Niche in St. Louis. Before opening Porter Road, he did a stage at Chicago's The Butcher and Larder to further his education in whole animal butchering.
Congratulations, gentlemen! Glad the national media continues to notice Nashville and its thriving culinary scene.
This year, you can eat at any of 20 different restaurants and food trucks and opt to add a voluntary $1 to the bill to benefit Nashville's Room In The Inn which provides shelter and other services to the homeless. This year's participating establishments are: Anatolia Turkish Restaurant, Bella Napoli, Biscuit Love Truck, Chago’s Cantina, Dalts, Edley’s Bar-B-Que, Finezza, Firefly Grille, Flyte, Hoss’ Loaded Burgers, Marché, Margot Café & Bar, Merchants, Midtown Cafe, Noshville Midtown, Paddy Boy’s Q to U, The Silly Goose, Sunset Grill, The Wild Cow and The Wild Hare.
So here's the incentive part: Be honest and let us know how you'll support this effort; simply leave a comment and we'll pick a lucky winner from all the participants on Friday, Dec. 28. Get out there and do some good eating folks, and you'll have great chance to win another meal — plus tickets to the award-winning Nashville Symphony. Sounds like a no-brainer to me.
The organizers hope that Bites readers will spend some of their dining dollars at these restaurants between now and the end of the year when the initiative ends, and they've gone a little further to incentivize you all. We're dealing with the honor system here, people, but if you'll just mention in the comments which of these restaurants you've eaten at and added a buck to your bill, or even which ones you intend to patronize, you'll be entered into a drawing to win a $25 Amerigo Gift Certificate and a pair of Nashville Symphony tickets, good for any performance in the 12-13 season.
Producers are being coy about what else will be featured in the segment, but we know they also visited Live on the Green (and a few of our favorite food trucks) as well as F. Scott's. We'll have to tune in to see what makes the show. Luckily, if you miss it, you can watch the segment when they post it online.
Also, be sure to check out Chef Hall’s Chew Chew Clusters, her own take on the candy.
First, at Brinkmann’s in Cool Springs, Jimmy Russell, the master distiller at Wild Turkey, will be hosting a tasting and bottle-signing. I was lucky enough to attend a private tasting with Russell a couple years back, and while I can’t in good taste repeat much of what he said, I can assure you that he is a hilarious representative of the old school of whiskey making. Given his more than 54 years of experience making bourbon in Lawrenceburg, Ky., I imagine he has spilled more whiskey than I’ll ever drink.
Russell will be in-store from 4 to 6 this afternoon, Dec. 14, to sign and sip, so take off work a little early and head on down to 103 International Drive in Franklin to meet the man.
Closer to town, Grand Cru on Murphy Road is hosting an interesting “Bourbon and Baubles” event this evening from 5 to 6:30. Cindy David will be showcasing her collection of jewelry in case you’re still shopping for that special person. And whether you still have gifts to pick up or you need to screw up your courage and lower your inhibitions to come off of that wallet for some sparkly things, Andy and Charlie Nelson of Greenbrier Distillery will be there to help you out. Nashville’s favorite rectifiers will be pouring some of their Belle Meade Bourbon for shoppers at Grand Cru, so pick up a bottle and get them to sign it for another great gift idea.
In another exciting development, chef Arnold Myint has created a menu of sandwiches, wraps and salads that will be available for dining in or carryout. Prices are in the $6-9 range, and Myint especially recommends the "Italiano" sandwich which he put together to honor the heritage of Garage Coffee Company owner Robert Camardo.
Here's the full menu for your consideration:
Episode 20: TNT's Billiards, Bar & Grille
Address: 4523 Nolensville Pike
Going to TNT's was not my idea — all credit goes to my buddy and fellow culinary adventurer/day drinker Wes Lewis. He had the eagle eyes that noticed a bar had opened next to the ghost-Lowe's — where the Social Security office used to be, one of the many big-box carcasses sprinkled through the neighborhood — and then actually made me follow-up on my promise to check it out with him. Good lookin' out, good lookin' out. TNT's was not what I was expecting — when checking out a new spot in a weird locale, it's best to keep expectations low — and I honestly think we may have stumbled upon a diamond in the rough. Or maybe not a diamond, but definitely a bar with plenty of pool tables, cheap beer and a killer pork chop sandwich. I'll take a pork chop sandwich over a diamond any day.
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