Nashville Restaurants and Food
Valentine’s Day Picks 2011
Love Nashville style! We offer three ideas this year for Valentine’s Day dining: Creative and precisely executed twists on southern traditions; bold flavors that tingle the tongue and heat up the room; and low light ambiance, small plates for sharing and a glass of wine.
1. The Capitol Grille
The Capitol Grille has become our go-to restaurant for special occasions. Executive Chef Tyler Brown has the place firing on all cylinders. In the front of the house, they present deft, friendly service from a knowledgeable staff. Start in the Oak Room bar with a glass of wine. In fact, you could even stay at the bar and have an entire meal of American classics gone upscale: pimento grilled cheese, deviled eggs, pork sliders and even a Brunswick stew (on normal days, check to see for V-Day). In the Capitol Grille itself, you can expect bold takes on Southern tradition. The House Cured Country Ham Chowder has the powerful flavors of a Tennessee smokehouse gone creamy and silky. A Niman Ranch pork chop is exceedingly tender and features a subtle smoke. While limited, there are always menu items for veggie eaters, including an entrée and at least one tangy salad option, like the Lola Rosa salad with goat cheese, pecans and blood orange. Just make sure you ask about preparation for some of the sides. The Valentine’s Day has just been released. It includes the Lola Rosa salad, Seared Lamb Loin and Maine Lobster Terrine. For the non-fish eating Veggie Eaters we would suggest a call to reservations. While there is no vegetarian entrée listed, every time we have called they were quite willing to come up with something special.
Spice has been equated with love throughout history. Ginger offers a bit of heat and a lot of depth in its spicy dishes and we think that’s a recipe for romance. Sure, this isn’t the place to bring a new date if you’re trying to impress them. Ginger is a laid back, modest restaurant serving up good food. That sounds like the perfect spot for the married couple and long time daters. The curries have a great depth of flavor and decent heat. They will take it up a few notches, or down a few, on request. Make sure you ask about dessert. They have a number of interesting possibilities.
3. Belcourt Taps and Tapas
This Hillsboro Village restaurant had a few hiccups in the first few weeks, which is the case with many restaurants. The service, food and price point all improved quickly. One thing that was never in doubt was the ambiance. The warm, romantically dark room is a great place to enjoy a glass of wine and some conversation. Share a few small plates, have another glass of wine. Those dishes are Southern and European inspired, but this is not a Spanish joint. We suggest the fried chicken, drizzled with ancho chili honey and served with sausage scones. The house-made tater tots with onion with chipotle ketchup sound silly until you taste them.
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Nashville Restaurants and Food