The Best Restaurants in Nashville, TN

Nashville, TN has a wide variety of restaurants that contribute to the local flavor and flair.

Cara Sanders
On Sunday, April 7, 2019 - 21:33
Nashville, TN Byline Antony Boshier

Caffe Nonna, Suzy Wong's House of Yum, Arnold's Country Kitchen, Prince's Hot Chicken – these are all one-of-a-kind restaurants that add to Nashville's unique flavor and flair. There are even distinct dining opportunities at Nashville International Airport, including 8th & Roast, Fat Bottom Brewery (you can buy four packs of local beer to take home!), Gibson's Café and Noshville Delicatessen

Here is a brief overview of how to get the best bite out of the Music City dining scene:

Nashville's Top Spots for Coffee

If your taste buds are tired, wake them up at one of Nashville's many quality coffee houses, which offer some of Nashville’s best caffeinated or non-caffeinated beverages for even the hardest-to-please palate.

For those in the Germantown area, both Barista Parlor and Red Bicycle Coffee are staples, while Fido, located in Hillsboro Village, holds a special spot in the hearts of its loyal patrons.

Other top independent spots for coffee are Bongo Java, Dose, Slow Hand Coffee + Bakeshop, and Ugly Mugs are all popular spots in East Nashville; 

Ugly Mugs, Sip Cafe, and Bongo Java East, all in East Nashville; The Frothy Monkey in the 12South area; and Crema in the SoBro area near downtown. Of course, there are several Starbucks locations throughout town, and Dunn Bros. Coffee on Church Street is also known for its loyal following of downtown Nashville residents and workers.

Nashville TN

Breakfast Is Big in Nashville

Like they say, breakfast is the most important meal of the day and Nashvillians take it VERY seriously. Start your day off right at one of the city's many famous breakfast spots - but be ready to wait awhile.

At the Pancake Pantry, the line is almost always wrapped around the building, with locals and tourists alike trying to tickle their taste buds with a stack of those famous hot cakes. 'Donut' mess around and skip out on Fox’s Donut Den, where one can choose from a menu stocked with donuts, pastries, muffins and more.

Bagel lovers will rejoice at Proper Bagel, which serves up homemade bagels and bialys daily. If biscuits are more your speed, Biscuit Love can't be missed, but be sure to get there early. Finally, stop by the Loveless Café! Though the establishment is open for all three meals, breakfast is served all day and its world famous scratch biscuits are traditional Southern fare. 

American Cuisine

Cabana in Hillsboro Village is a favorite for groups, serving up craft cocktails and favorites like hot chicken, the restaurant's private cabanas make for a fun dining experience. 

The Yellow Porch near Berry Hill has favorite dishes like fresh fish paella and Mediterranean vegetable lasagna. Capitol Grille in the Hermitage Hotel has won several awards for its Southern-based menu lineup. Also earning both media attention and frequent "must-try" recommendations from residents is City House. For some of the best New York deli fare south of the Mason-Dixon Line, check out Noshville. With three locations around Nashville, it's easy to stop in for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Other local favorites for quality food and a variety of menu choices include Butchertown HallHenley, Etch, Saint StephenGermantown Cafe, Crow’s Nest, Burger Up, 5th & Taylor, Lockeland Table, M.L. Rose and food truck turned restaurant, The Grilled Cheeserie

Barbecue, Hot Chicken and Other Comfort Foods

Martin's Bar-B-Que Joint serves up West-Tennessee Style Whole Hog BBQ and is a local favorite with six locations in the greater-Nashville area. Jack's Bar-B-Que is home to St. Louis-style ribs and Texas sausage, while Prince's Hot Chicken Shack is the granddaddy of the city's hot-chicken emporiums, dating back to the 1940s.

Other top spots include McDougal's Chicken Fingers & Wings,Bar-B-Cutie, 400 DegreesBolton's Spicy Chicken & Fish and, of course, Hattie B's. For comfort food served family style, check out Monell's Dining and Catering.

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Photo by Jeff Adkins


Nashvillians looking for sushi and other Asian-inspired dishes can find them at Suzy Wong's House of Yum, Virago, Sunda and Tànsuŏ. Another top destination, PM offers fusion-dishes such as strip steak teriyaki and a Thai-spiced burger prepared by Arnold Myint, an award-winning chef who was featured on the television show Top Chef: DC. If Vietnamese or Japanese get your tongue twirling, then choose from Far East Nashville or Two Ten Jack. 


Despite the name, San Antonio Taco Company is a Nashville original - with a friendly atmosphere and low-cost high-taste menu, it's no surprise that SATCO is always full of happy customers. Saint Anejo, part of the M Street restaurant group, serves up Mexican favorites in the Gulch and the restaurant's cool atmosphere and patio make it a favorite spot. 

Other spots that will have you dancing South of the border without ever leaving Nashville include Mas Tacos Por Favor, Taco MamacitaThe Local Taco, Bajo SextoRosepepper Cantina, Taqueria del Sol and Nada


Known for its stone-oven pizza, MAFIAoZA's offers Italian delicacies in an inviting New York-style environment and is a favorite weeknight dinner spot. Moto serves up seasonal specialties and classic favorites, including cacio e pepe and margherita pizza. If you're looking for pizza pies, 312 Pizza Company and Slim & Husky's are both a must. 

Other favorite spots include Rolf & Daughters, Caffe Nonna, Nicky's Coal Fired, Five Points Pizza and Coco's Italian Market

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Photo by Brian McCord

Bakeries and Sweets in Nashville

You should always save room for dessert in Nashville, which has many spots for sweet treats. At Sweet Cece's, customers create their own delicious frozen yogurt treats, selecting from a variety of flavors and toppings. Other great options for ice cream and frozen yogurt include The Soda ParlorMike's Ice Cream, Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream and Legendairy Milkshake Bar.

If you are in the mood for more exotic cool treats, be sure to try the gourmet popsicles at Las Paletas in the 12South neighborhood, where flavor options include plum, hibiscus and avocado. 

The cupcake craze is well represented in Nashville, too; it's just a matter of finding your favorite. Originated in Nashville, Gigi's Cupcakes offers a stellar menu of confectionary treats that keep customers coming back for more as do The Cupcake Collection, Sweet 16th and Baked on 8th

Just Ask Your Bartender 

From local beer to expertly mixed cocktails, you'll be in high spirits at Music City’s premier bars and pubs. A tip from the locals is to avoid the Honky Tonks of Broadway and opt for a more relaxed atmosphere at spots like The Patterson House, Rosemary and Beauty Queen, The Greenhouse and Bastion

Take your night to new heights at one of our many hotel rooftop bars, including L27 Rooftop Lounge, L.A. Jackson, Rare Bird or the Bobby Rooftop Lounge

If a brewery is more your scene, we've got lots of those to offer as well. Jackalope Brewing Company, Yazoo, Bearded Iris Brewing, Black Abbey Brewing, Fat Bottom Brewery and Diskin Cider are all musts. 


Cara Sanders is the director of digital marketing for