Friday, April 5, 2013

Open Thread Asks: What Nashville Specialties Do You Miss?

Posted by on Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 9:05 AM

The other day, I was thinking about a sandwich I hadn't eaten in 30 years. It was the specialty at a pioneering health-food joint called the Tennessee Grainery on the Square in Murfreesboro: whole wheat bread topped with shredded carrots, bean sprouts, white cheddar cheese and avocado, all of which were novelties to me. It was the first time I'd ever encountered soy sauce, and the first occasion I doused the sandwich with so much of the stuff it puddled.

I asked several people — including Nicki P. Wood and Chris Chamberlain, whose knowledge of the local restaurant scene is encyclopedic — which specialties from bygone Nashville restaurants they miss. Within minutes, selections started pouring in:

• Pasta Ya-Ya from Faisons
• Pimiento cheese from Clayton-Blackmon
• Chess pie from Harvey's Bakery
• Paella from Zola
• A Lemon Drop from Rainbow Key
• Gumbo from Laurell's
• Ribs from Jimmy Carl's (or Spats)
• Biscuits and gravy from Mack's Country Kitchen
• Filete Montés from Los Rosales
• Tempura shrimp from Blue Hawaii/Mahi Mahi
• Matzoh ball soup at Zager's
• The Judy-Q at Judy's
• The chivito sandwich from Nola's
• Grilled cheese with a chocolate soda from Moon Drugs
• Hot dogs steamed in beer from Lum's
• Shakey's Pizza

How about it, Bites Brigade? See any obvious favorites (cough Hap Townes cough) that didn't get a mention? Post your favorites below — and share whatever else is on your mind as we convene this week's Open Thread, where you have the floor.

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