Monday, June 24, 2013

First Bite: The Slider House

Posted By on Mon, Jun 24, 2013 at 5:42 AM

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Sharing a wall, parking lot and at least one owner with Soulshine Pizza, The Slider House in Midtown seeks to fulfill the late-night munchie needs of Nashvllians as they spill out of bars in the area. With a last call for food at 3 a.m. scheduled to coincide with closing hours at marathon drinking spots, it might just be your go-to destination for late night cravings.

Notice I said "your go-to destination." Not that I didn't like it on my first visit or won't be returning. I just went for lunch since the last time I saw 3 a.m. was from the other side when I had to wake up early to catch a flight.

Back to that parking lot, finding a spot for your jalopy can be tricky at any hour in Midtown, so The Slider House offers valet during most of the hours that they are open for $2. It would be worth the price just to watch the young valets from Soulshine, The Slider House and Chuy's battle to find the few available legal spots left. (And that's before Two Boots Pizza opens soon.) I think next time I may just hop in the passenger seat so I can learn the secret side street where they stash those cars and get a little exercise as I walk back to the restaurant.

After you enter through the large sliding garage doors that open onto a nice patio, your senses are assaulted by the kitschy decor of the dining area. Hundreds of beer cans line the ceiling and a large mural of a scene from The Big Lebowski and posters from Nashville rock 'n' roll shows of the past plaster the walls. Apparently one of the partners in the venture was an owner of Jack Legs Speakeasy downtown, so there's a nice historical record of that establishment traced among the handbills. Some of the tables are made from repurposed wood from the lanes at the old Melrose Bowling Alley, so that's another nice piece of Nashville nostalgia.

All those beer cans are indicative of the bar selection at The Slider House. They pride themselves on offering 53 beers in cans, which are all recycled after use, with the money raised going to an autism charity. To encourage your indirect donation to charity, The Slider House sells buckets of cans and gives patrons a free koozie with their first beer. If you're not into aluminum, there's also a full bar for your drinking pleasure.

A Happy Hour from 3 to 6 p.m. offer a buck off all drinks, so that might be a good time to take the bar for a little test drive. They are particularly proud of a fruity, rummy drink they call a Painkiller, so there's that waiting for you.

As far as the food menu goes, it is exactly what you'd expect from a place called The Slider House. There are seven different beef sliders, small hamburgers with various toppings like barbecue sauce, mozzarella and prosciutto, or blue cheese and Benton's bacon. I was impressed by the size of these maxi/mini burgers. They were definitely a handful and juicy enough to run down your forearm with every bite. The lunch special of your choice of any two sliders and what they call "a side car" for $7.99 should be a filling meal for just about anyone.

The side cars are accompaniments like fried pickles, hand-cut fries, chili of some excellent sweet potato wedges that I enjoyed on my visit. I had heard that the wedges could be a little undercooked, but these were crispy on the outside and pillowy inside and were some of the best I've had. Other slider options include a couple of vegetarian sandwiches featuring portobello and another which is a version of a grilled cheese Capri salad with a nice drizzle of balsamic on top. Pork loin, fried chicken and thick-sliced smoked bologna also make appearances as slider toppings in addition to a short list of what they call "Slider Dogs."

The menu isn't specific about all the sources of their ingredients, but they do claim to use local suppliers whenever possible, and the buns from Provence were a very nice touch. The sandwiches may be small, but the taste and the value at The Slider House are pretty big. Check it out and let us know what you think here in the comments.

The Slider House
1907 Division St.
Open 11 a.m.-3 a.m. daily

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