New Restaurant Alert: Vittles Donelson

Living away from home sometimes you get homesick and just want something that reminds you of a familiar place. Back in Houston I loved waking up on Saturday’s and eating breakfast with my parents at a local diner called TelWink.  The service is always great and the food is so amazing you are willing to wait in a line that wraps around the restaurant. So last Saturday I was on the quest to find a no frills breakfast spot that would remind me of home.

I decided to try Vittles in Donelson. It is quaint and in an unassuming strip mall. While there was no line out the door it got good reviews on Yelp, so why not give it a shot. I chose to kept the meal simple and just order your basic eggs, sausage and grits. Ya’ll know how I feel about grits, so this was a test to see how good the restaurant actually was. If you cant cook grits you might as well shut down. The food came rather quickly and was nice and hot. Everything tasted good including the grits! While Vittles is definitely no TelWink it was still fairly good.

If you’re looking to grab breakfast in Nashville give Vittles a try.

New Restaurant Alert: BLVD Nashville

Back when I was in college Belmont Blvd only had a quaint little coffee shop,a Circle K gas station, a little Asian market, a not so great Greek restaurant and, an under rated Asian fusion spot. There wasn’t much traffic behind the college students and a few neighborhood peeps. Well boy have times changed. With the growth of Nashville, Belmont Blvd was definitely not left out of the revitalization.  Everyone was finally hipped to Asian fusion and realized how amazing PM was. That Greek place was torn down and  2 new trendy restaurants were built.

A few weeks while visiting my alma mater  I decided to try one of those new trendy spots.  Out of the two we chose BLVD. The restaurant was cute and a perfect mixture of hipster flare and southern charm. We decided to order the deviled eggs as an appetizer because who doesn’t love deviled eggs.  But let me tell you these were not your Granny’s eggs. While they were definitely lacking a creaminess the bacon and mustard seeds were a nice touch.

For my meal I went with the braised short rib, the swiss chard and the bacon parmesan brussel  sprouts. While the chard was in this red sauce that was a bit pungent, everything else was a hit. The short rib with super tender and flavored well. The sprouts are destined to make anyone a believer! Even if you aren’t a fan of brussel sprouts trust me when I say you would enjoy these. Overall I really enjoyed BLVD and will definitely be back.

New Restaurant Alert: Judge Beans BBQ

Since moving to Tennessee I have been on a search for good bbq. Nice and tender smoked meat with good flavor.  However, so far that has been hard to find. I was super excited to try Judge Beans located in Brentwood that describes itself as Texas bbq in Tennessee.

I brought along my best friend who also happens to be a Texas transplant to give them a try. We walked in and could smell the smoke which is always a good sign! The place was quaint and decked out with Texas memorabilia. The staff was friendly and well right at home.

Being that I am from Texas I knew I wanted the brisket but there were so many other items I wanted to try on the menu. I decided to order one of the sampler platters and try the brisket, ribs and sausage. As sides, I got the  green beans and fried okra. Now for how it tasted…

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It did have a smokey flavor which was appreciated. However, the brisket was bit dry, the ribs were ok, the sausage tasted like hot dogs.  Now typically, I’m not that much of a bbq sauce kind of girl but sometimes its need. This time though the sauce  just didn’t cut it. It had an overwhelming amount of vinegar in it. The taste was almost off putting. Not a fan.

I wanted to love Judge Beans put in my humble Texan opinion it was simply just alright.

New Restaurant Alert: Subcluture Urban Cafe

Every once in while you luck up and find gems in your own neighborhood. And boy was I excited to find Subculture.  Its a quaint little cafe in a very unassuming strip mall but the food as a lot of personality.  The menu while not extensive has a mixture of  Latin street food with typical American food. Plus it has cool coffee bar for a little hipster flair.

I decided to try their Churrasco Sandwich and  their beef empanada.  It was so so good.  The sandwich came with tender steak topped with chimichurri, tomato, avocado, and a fried egg. Dude! Sign me up for anything topped with a fried egg.  The empanada I ordered was equally as amazing. Lots of flavor and the dough was soft and flaky.

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If you’re ever in the South Nolensville/ “Brentioch” area I highly recommend giving Subculuture a try.

 

New Restaurant Alert: Umami Nashville

One of the great things about living in a residential/commercial style apartment building is you have restaurants literally a few feet away. Ever since Umami opened a few months ago I’ve been wanting to give them a try and this past weekend I was finally able to give them a try.

Umami describes itself as  Asian fusion. The menu has an assortment of different styles of Asian food ranging from Korean tacos, to Ramen and sushi. There were lots of things on the menu I definetly wanted to try. However, being that I am on a low carb diet majority of the menu was not an option for me.

I ended up ordering the galbi which is Korean barbecue for those of you unfamiliar with it. Typically the dish comes with rice but I was able to make a special request and sub it for steamed vegetables. Which was a huge win in my book. Steamed vegetables wasn’t an available side item on their menu. Everything was super yummy! The galbi had a good smokey flavor to it and the veggies were delicious too.

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If you’re ever in Nashville I would highly recommend giving Umami a try.

New Restaurant Alert: Liberty Kitchen and Oyster Bar

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While in Houston for the Thanksgiving holiday I decided to get started on my 30 before 30 list. Being stuck in landlocked Nashville anything closely resembling fresh seafood was screaming my name. For a while now I’ve been wanting to try Liberty Kitchen and now was the perfect excuse.

The restaurant has 2 main locations and a few smaller spinoff locations. We opted for the one in the Heights. The restaurant in quaint but far from claustrophobic. We were sat in booth on the back wall tastefully decorated with pictures of Houston streets. I ordered a glass of Reisling and perused the menu.

The were quite a few fresh fish options and plus you standard burger and sandwich choices. Plus a whole section dedicated to Mac and Cheese. The menu also had a number of salads and soups including a gumbo.

Being that I was on “vacation” I decided to fully indulge in all the carby options they had to offer. Mainly, that mac and cheese was screaming my name! I mean who doesn’t love mac and cheese. Also the gumbo sounded so good I wanted to try that as well. And boy was I right.

I ordered the cup as a starter. Not only did it have a yummy rich dark roux it also had crab, shrimp, sausage, okra and a fried oyster. Yes, a fried oyster! While I tend to be a traditionalist I was definitely here for the fried oyster.

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Keeping with the fried oyster trend I decided to order the seafood mac and cheese as my entree. It had lots of ooey gooey cheese, shell pasta, shrimp, greens onions and topped with… you guessed it fried oysters.  It was simply heavenly.

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If you’re ever in Houston I would highly recommend Liberty Kitchen. It was totally worth the calories and a great start to my 30 new restaurants check list!

Are there any restaurants in the Nashville or Houston area I should try? Let me know in the comments.