When it comes to destination dining, Margot is where you want to set your compass. As much as residents in the restaurant’s East Nashville neighborhood would like to keep this jewel to themselves, they would have to secure the perimeter of Five Points to stem the flow of devotees who stream over the river from points near and far to taste Provence and Tuscany in this charming, renovated brick building. From the open kitchen on the first level, intoxicating scents waft through the first-floor dining room, over to the half-moon bar, up to the mezzanine and out to the enclosed patio. Chef/co-owner Margot McCormack sets the bar high, changing her menu nightly based on what comes freshest to the kitchen door that morning. Business partner Jay Fein is in charge of the French/Italian/German wine list, and servers offer informed assistance. Margot’s Sunday brunch—to order, not a buffet—is all the reason many need to get out of bed early and beat the crowds.
In addition to its custom brewing business, this 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.
If you’re visiting Nashville, chances are you’re either on vacation (hooray, fun!) or on a business trip (boo, work!). Either way, head to City House and treat yo’ self to a pork belly pizza. Or anything, really — this gem in booming Germantown is run by chef Tandy Wilson, a food genius who was announced as a James Beard finalist for the third year in a row in 2015. But don’t get too carried away on dinner; you’ll definitely want dessert, too — the cookie plate is a local legend.