This renowned venues quarter-century history includes everyone from Steve Martin to The Police.
Four generations of Nashvillians have settled into the cozy booths of this family-owned, diner-style restaurant opened in 1945 by John and Evelyn Rotier. Not many places offer American cheese and crackers as an appetizer anymore, but Rotier’s does. Meat-and-three “Night Plates,” short orders from the fryer, and head lettuce salads are staples, but the most popular item remains the patty melt: a cheeseburger served either grilled or on French bread. Special mention goes to the best milkshake in Nashville. It’s the real deal, delivered icy-cold in the classic aluminum milkshake cup.
Nashvilles historic Cannery Row, off Eighth Avenue South in an old converted warehouse, lie the Mercy Lounge and the Cannery Ballroom, two of Nashvilles premier music venues. The second-story Mercy Lounge offers standing room for 500 people and features pool tables, a large bar and pinball machines. Downstairs sits the renovated Cannery Ballroom, a massive venue with standing room for 1,000. Since the 80s, The Lounge/Ballroom has welcomed some of the nations top touring acts, including Janes Addiction, Gregg Allman and Iggy Pop.
Nightlife impresario Ben Goldbergs speakeasy is an unexpected legacy for Governor Malcolm R. Patterson, who pledged to support the temperance movement but ultimately vetoed restrictions to sell alcohol in the state in 1909. By elevating cocktails to the level of cuisineputting Demon Rum on a pedestalPatterson House encourages the slow sipping and appreciation of well-mixed drinks. With at least three vest-clad bartenders serving 30 guests at the bar, the staff appears to have limitless attention for every patron. That's important, because you'll want to ask a lot of questions. For example: What is in all those tiny apothecary-style brown bottles with the eyedroppers? (House-made bitters.) Why are you cracking an egg into my drink? (To make it frothy.) And what, in the name of all that is salt-cured, is a bacon Old Fashioned? All that sipping needs some sop, and Patterson House delivers a sturdy, playful roster of snacks, along the lines of deep-fried sweetbreads, fig-and-prosciutto flatbread and The Elvisa sandwich of peanut butter, bananas and bacon.
With live local music nightly ranging from old time country to punk and indie rock, The 5 Spot provides a laid-back atmosphere to catch a show. Emphasis is on local, but the occasional touring act can jump on the bill.
In addition to its custom brewing business, the city’s newest craft brewery has four of its own beers: Amarillo Pale Ale, Spring Wheat, Dos Perros and Onward Stout. In the cozy taproom, customers can sample all of the brewery’s handcrafted offerings fresh from the taps in pints or 5-oz. samplers. Complementing the beers are small plates of artisan cheeses, fresh breads, chutney, fruits and nuts. Also available for purchase are freshly filled half-gallon bottles of beer to go, as well as logo T-shirts and glasses.