In case you're not familiar with it, Tasti D-Lite is a "dairy-based soft serve frozen dessert." Its makers say it's not frozen yogurt, because it doesn’t contain fermented yogurt cultures, and it's not ice cream, because it contains less than 10 percent butter fat. Whatever it is, it's popular, and the chain is celebrating its 25th anniversary by offering small cones and cups for 25 cents on Friday only.
There's also a special Birthday Cake flavor available for the entire month of September. So grab the kiddos and head to one of their two Nashville locations to wish them a happy birthday and enjoy a sweet treat. I guarantee it'll be cheaper than the soft serve at the state fair.
2418 West End Ave.
Nashville, TN 37203
7044 Charlotte Pike
Walmart Store No. 659
Nashville, TN 37209
In honor of their new summertime salads, Chili-Lime Ginger with seared chicken, Backyard Barbecue Chicken with fresh-cut corn, and Spinach & Fresh Fruit, they have declared today to be “Sowing the Seeds of Salad” Day.
When both locations open at 11 this morning, the first 50 people through the door will receive a card for a free Summertime Salad. They will also receive three garden stakes that are good for a free salad that they can share with friends.
So make plans to eat early today and check out the new salad offerings at Noodles and Company. Let us know what you think in the comments. If you can't make it out in time today, they've let me have five free salad coupons to give away to the first readers who say "I want one!" in the comments. Just leave a comment and email me your mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll drop your freebies in the mail.
Noodles and Company
The Mall at Green Hills
2116 Green Hills Village Drive
Nashville, TN 37215
11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
995 Meridian Blvd.
Franklin, TN 37067
11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
This Sunday and Monday, May 27-28, both the Belle Meade and Cool Springs outposts of Sperry's are offering all entries (except lobster tails and crab legs) for half price from 5 p.m. until close. Despite the fact that the deal kicks off at 5, they still want to emphasize that it is not available during brunch in case you roll your lazy butt out of the rack at 5:30 looking for some cheap Eggs Benedict.
Seriously, this sounds like a pretty good deal to me. Head on out and enjoy some of their popular prime rib and a salad served on one of those cryogenically cooled steel plates at a great price.
Sperry's Belle Meade
5109 Harding Pike
Nashville, TN 37205
Sperry's Cool Springs
650 Frazier Drive
Franklin, TN 37067
Gov. Bill Haslam proposed a cut to the food tax yesterday, slicing it from 5.5 to 5.3 percent in a move that promises to be a boon for working families everywhere. Or not.
Now, I love tax cuts as much as the next person. But even by my math — admittedly, the part of school I was least interested in — that's 20 cents on $100 worth of groceries.
I'll repeat that — TWENTY CENTS.
I'm not sure what level of objectivity I'm sacrificing by calling that the worst tax cut in the history of ever, but surely the $18 million the state is foregoing to bring us this tax cut could go to something better than the pennies it's going to save us. Have you seen some of the roads around here?
Nevertheless, I tried to see how I could use this largess. The first article of faith among tax cutters is always, "You spend your money better than the government can spend it." So here's how the wife and I attempted to spend 20 cents at Publix on a Tuesday night:
TGI Friday's wants to give Middle Tennesseans a treat before, during and after tomorrow's game. Normally, Friday's All-You-Can-Eat Wings promotion is only available in the bar area of participating restaurants on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, but in honor of the bowl game they are offering the deal from one hour before game time until one hour after the final whistle.
That means from about 4:30 to 8:30 p.m., you can enjoy as many wings as you can handle for one flat rate along with TGI Friday's voluminous bar menu of beers and specialty cocktails. You know you don't want to be any closer to the stadium than twenty blocks at game time anyway. If you don't happen to be near the West End location, the deal is also good at their locations in the hinterlands. Here's a list of all the participating restaurants:
Choose from either the local spinach salad with warm bacon-apple dressing, toasted pistachio, apple, red onion, feta, tomato and applewood bacon; or the green chili mac-and-cheese with jalapeno, roasted poblano, poblano cream, baby spinach (with choice of soup or salad). Both run $10, minus the 10 percent discount for Bites readers.
I have raved about Fido's specials in the past and can vouch for these dishes as well. I have been eating that green chili mac for at least six years and am always happy to see it making appearances on the seasonal special board. And if you want to really impress me, pick up a Kitchen Sink Cookie on your way out (botched cookie recipe attempt is forthcoming).
In an effort to solve both of these problems, Watermark is now offering a surprisingly affordable way for curious diners to experience Chef Bolus' brand of upscale Southern cooking with a prix-fixe menu that features regional specialties made with some of our favorite ingredients. And best of all, it's offered nightly, so you can even make a cheap weekend date of it. The menu features a choice of appetizer, entrée and dessert for just $40 per person, or $60 per person with wine pairings for each course.
The summer menu includes a choice from each of the following courses:
You call these weekly assemblies of home-baked goods, food stands and organic produce "farmers' markets." I call them "food courts." Two weeks ago I made it through the Saturday morning West Nashville Farmers Market in Richland Park with the best barbecue sandwich I've had in Nashville (more on that later), a big cup of basil lemonade from Primm Springs, a crisp, gooey empanada from Karla Ruiz (and damn the scoundrel who absconded with her entire supply of tamales!) and a grilled rice cake basted with tamari from Naoko's Delights.
But the best farmers' market find I've found recently along these lines — and perhaps the most counter-intuitive, no pun intended — is at the Saturday morning Woodbine Farmers Market in Coleman Park. This budding market already has one of my favorite items, available nowhere else I've seen: Ben Smythe's Banjamin's Ghost Pepper Elixer & Seasoning, a variety of zippy spice powders, rubs and condiments with the dusky atomic bang of the infamous Bhut jolokia throughout. I put it on eggs; I put it on buttered bread; I snort it off the table in lines.
And now I can put it on biscuits and gravy as I walk around the Woodbine market, thanks to Jon Heidelberg and his Jonbalaya Catering. An affiliate of Riffs Food Truck — where Chef Carlos was dispensing amazing blackened fish tacos and Thai beef salad over noodles last week across the shady field — Jonbalaya has the breakfast I've been craving on early-morning trips to the farmers market: buttery biscuits with perfect discs of poached egg and mild country sausage, available with a rich sausage gravy that shames Cracker Barrel. That's $4; the biscuit, egg and sausage alone are $2.50. Great stuff.
Jonbalaya and Riffs have a lot of mutual joshing going on. When I bought a peach iced tea from Jonbalaya, Jon directed me across the lot to tell the guys manning Riffs his tea put theirs to shame. I did so, expecting a plateful of Thai beef salad in the face. (Which wouldn't be a bad thing.) Chef Carlos grinned and shook his fist in mock indignation. The smart guy would go early enough to have Jonbalaya's biscuits and gravy — washed down with either a Primm Springs lemonade or a chocolate milk from the Dairy-Air Airstream trailer — spend an hour or so hanging out and striking up conversations, then hit the Riffs truck on the way out.
If you haven't checked Jam out yet, now might be a good time. Today's Big Deal is an $8 gift certificate for $4. The Jam offers great coffee from a local roaster and a dazzling selection of organic teas. I haven't tried the food yet, but I hear they do panini, soups and hot specials like veggie tacos. And pastries, too.
I really like the sunny room and the fun '50s-retro vibe. The Jam Coffeehouse is at 1210 Wedgewood Ave. (823-3292). More info is at facebook.com/thejamcoffeehouse.
Want to watch someone prepare cicadas in a stir-fry and chow down? See the video above. Want to learn more about the seasonal visitors without picking wings and legs out of your teeth? Visit the free Science Cafe 7 p.m. tonight at Fido in Hillsboro Village, sponsored by Adventure Science Center. Let Belmont biologist/entomologist Dr. Steve Murphree initiate you into the ways of the omnipresent arthropods, from their 13-year journey above ground to their six- to eight-week stay.
The Science Cafe is not a lecture: it's designed more as an informal gathering that allows for give and take between scientists and laymen. For more information, see the Adventure Science Center site. And if you shriek and run at the sight of the whirring dervishes, don't go here. Or — ulp! — here.
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