Thursday, August 31, 2006

My Fellow Americans, the hotel is on fire

This was the headline of the story in the Washington Post on February 26 , 2000.

It was referring to a fire at the Wardman Park hotel in Washington D.C. during a visit by President Clinton. The story has long washed away from the archives or at least I couldn't find it anyway. I was working there at the time as the Guest Services Manager and what a day that was. I will never forget it because of all the hoopla going on that day with the president, secret service and so on and suddenly the fire alarms go off. It was controlled chaos behind the scenes but we looked great to the public, which is just how it is supposed to be. "Never let them see you sweat"

Here is an excerpt from the news article that I saved.

Written by Washington Post staff writer Petula Dvorak and the Associated Press contributed to the report.

"Though he tried to continue his speech over the blaring fire alarm, President Clinton was ushered out of a hotel ballroom yesterday when officials realized the hotel's laundry room was ablaze. Clinton had just begun his speech at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, in the 2600 block of Woodley Road NW, when the alarm sounded.

The president thanked "the noisemaker in the back," then tried to continue his remarks for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Awards. The is given annually by congress to U.S. companies in the areas of manufacturing, service and small business to recognize quality and performance. Clinton joked that, because of the alarm, "the Marriott is not a candidate for the Baldrige Award." One of the four recipients yesterday was the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company.

"Maybe they're are telling us it's a fire alarm and I'm to keep you here while the fire burns, I don't know," he said, " Could somebody tell me what the deal is?" Clinton asked. A staff member said it was indeed a fire alarm.

"Are we supposed to leave?" the president asked.
"Not yet," the aide replied
"Not yet?" Clinton asked incredulously. "That's not an encouraging answer. Not yet."
"Well, unless somebody starts singing 'Smoke Gets In Your Eyes, ' I think...we may just start and go on." he said

Downstairs, firefighters were arriving where the service area was ablaze and the order had been given to evacuate. Three Secret Service officers entered the ballroom and motioned for the audience of about 1,000 to leave. Clinton calmly walked out with Commerce Secretary William Daley. They were taken to a stairwell to Clinton's limousine and driven back to the White House, spokesman Joe Lockhart said.

"Apparently, a contract welder working near the laundry room set off a small fine in the laundry room," Lockhard said. "The fire marshals responded and made the decision to evacuate the hotel. The president evacuated and came back to the White House."

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Sights of Nashville

Cash on the wall

Parthenon Columns

Athena (inside the Parthenon)

Parthenon facade

West End Methodist Church

Schermerhorn Symphony Center and some information about the design and architecture and upcoming events...

Architectural Lecture & Tour of the Schermerhorn Symphony Center
Thurs, Sept 7.
Schermerhorn Symphony Center.
4th & Demonbreun.
$60, $25 for students, free for members of ICA&CA.
Lecture by David M. Schwarz, design architect of the center, and a preview tour.
Reception from 5 - 6 pm, tour at 5:30 pm, lecture from 6 - 7 pm.
RSVP by August 31 to 252-4204 or

Thanks to Shannon Smith at the Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau for this information
Just some general stats...

Chief acoustician Paul Scarbrough said the design and the acoustics were inspired by three world-class concert halls - the Musikvereinsaal in Vienna, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw and the Boston Symphony Hall.

"The diversity and quality of programming during these opening week events will not only showcase the state-of-the-art capabilities of the Schermerhorn Symphony Center, but it will give audiences the opportunity to hear Nashville Symphony and other music ensembles in a fresh and exciting new way," said Alan D. Valentine, President and CEO of the Nashville Symphony.

Flooring and the lighting:
One of the most innovative features of Schermerhorn Symphony Center is a convertible seating system that is designed to give the hall unique versatility. The orchestra level seating of the Laura Turner Concert Hall can be transformed from rows of comfortable raked seating at classical performances, to a 5,600-square-foot hardwood, ballroom floor, typically used for cabaret-style events such as pops and jazz concerts. A unique chair wagon motorized system will lower rows of seats into a special storage space below the surface of the ballroom floor. This convertible system will give the concert hall great flexibility for numerous types of events throughout the year. In addition, a system of 102 computerized lights will be able to focus, change color and direct their beams to any part of the concert hall rapidly and in synchronization.

Schermerhorn Symphony Center could very well be the best concert hall in the world. It will bring international renown to Nashville, building on its credentials as Music City.

•An acoustical and design masterpiece, comparable to the greatest halls in the world, including Musikverein, Vienna, Austria; The Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Tonhalle, Zurich, Switzerland; and Berlin Konzerthaus, Berlin.
•Neoclassical revivalist design. Limestone exterior
•Only major concert hall in North America with natural light: 30 soundproof windows into the hall
•2” minimum acoustical isolation joint between the performance hall and rest of building to assure no transfer of vibration or noise into hall
•180’ colonnade facing an adjacent large park—responsive to the most public side of the building
•Space for 115 musicians on the performance platform; plus 140 choral seats behind the platform (which will be sold to public when there is no chorus)
•The centerpiece is the $2.5 million pipe organ.
•The hall will be one of few in the world with natural light. Windows within windows will keep noise out.

Who are the Design and Construction Team?
Architects: David M. Schwarz/Architectural Services, Design Architect; Earl Swensson Associates, Architect; Hastings Architecture Associates, Consulting Architect
Acoustician: Akustiks, Inc
Theater Planner: Fisher Dachs Associates

Upcoming Events...

Schermerhorn Symphony Center to Open with Music, Dedication and Celebration: September 1-11, 2006
Events to Include Ribbon-cutting Ceremony with Mayor Purcell; Nashville Symphony's Opening Gala Performance; Evening with Amy Grant and Friends; and Nashville Chamber Orchestra's Music without Boundaries Gala
August 8, 2006
With the September 9 opening of Schermerhorn Symphony Center quickly approaching, the Nashville Symphony announces details of the opening week's events in their new concert hall, located at One Symphony Place, between Third and Fourth Avenues and Demonbreun Street and Broadway.
Student Preview Concerts: Friday, September 1 at 10:15 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.Middle-Tennessee high school students will be among the first to hear the Nashville Symphony in its new home, Schermerhorn Symphony Center. As part of a special school program, students in grades 9-12 are invited to attend a preview concert conducted by National Symphony Music Director Leonard Slatkin, which will include selections from Aaron Copland's Rodeo and Rimsky-Korsakov's Cappriccio espagnol. For further information, contact Shelby B. Strickland, Nashville Symphony Director of Education, at 615.687.6551 or at

Ribbon-cutting Ceremony: Thursday, September 7 at 11:00 a.m.Mayor Bill Purcell will join Nashville Symphony patrons and Nashville community leaders in a private ribbon-cutting ceremony and building dedication on Thursday, September 7 at 11:00 a.m. on the north entrance stairs of Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Brief remarks will be made by Mayor Purcell; Nashville Symphony President and CEO Alan D. Valentine; Nashville Advisory Council President, Kevin Lavender; and community leader Cal Turner, son of Laura Turner, for whom the concert hall is named.Guests will then be invited to explore the Schermerhorn Symphony Center, including the newly dedicated Laura Turner Concert Hall, followed by a reception in the garden courtyard. Guests of the ribbon-cutting ceremony are by invitation only.

GALA Opening Night: Saturday, September 9 at 6:30 p.m.
The official white-tie gala opening of Schermerhorn Symphony Center will take place on Saturday, September 9, with red carpet arrivals and cocktailsbeginning at 5:00 p.m. The Nashville Symphony inaugural concert, led by National Symphony Music Director Leonard Slatkin, will begin at 6:30 p.m. and will include a world premiere of Triple Concerto for Banjo, Double Bass and Tabla by Edgar Meyer, Béla Fleck and Zakir Hussain. Co-commissioned by the Nashville Symphony and Akustiks, Inc., the Triple Concerto is dedicated to the interconnecting musical influences found in Nashville, Music City.The evening will kick off with Shostakovich's celebratory Festive Overture.Other highlights of the gala concert include Samuel Barber's Essay No. 2, Op. 17, a nod to the Nashville Symphony's ongoing tribute to American music, and Mahler's Symphony No. 2 "Resurrection," featuring the Nashville Symphony Chorus, mezzo-soprano Frederica Van Stade, and soprano Janice Chandler-Eteme. Following the concert, gala opening night dinner guests will move to Hall of Fame Park to enjoy a three-course meal by the "Symphony of Chefs:" Sunset Grill/Cabana/Midtown Cafe chef Brian Uhl, Zola chef/owner Deb Paquette, and Park Cafe chef Willie Thomas. The selected main course menu will include Snake River Farms beef tenderloin, seared George's Bank scallops and roasted rack of lamb. Brief remarks and music will occur under the 130 ft round tent-the same tent Elton John uses for his Oscar parties-designed by Production Designer Jim Mees from Los Angeles and flower arrangements by Joe Smith of Ilex. Gala opening night chairs are Julie Boehm and Ellen Martin.Following dinner, guests will return to the concert hall to enjoy one of the Symphony Center's most distinctive features: the convertible flat-floor system. Conducted by Nashville Symphony Director of Pops Albert-George Schram, post-dinner entertainment will include dancing on the converted parquet floor to Strauss waltzes by the Nashville Symphony, followed by dance music from the 11-piece Craig Duncan Orchestra. Desserts and champagne will be served, and dancing is expected to continue late into the night.The gala opening night will raise funds for the Nashville Symphony's future programs and initiatives.
Tickets for the concert and dinner are $2,500 per person. For more information or to request an invitation, contact Stacy Eaton-Carter at 615-687-6531, or at
Individual concert tickets are $100-500, based on availability. Please check after August 21 for further updates. Nashville Symphony's gala opening night is sponsored by Ingram Industries.
Evening with Amy Grant: Sunday, September 10 at 8:00 p.m.The Sunday gala concert, with six-time Grammy-award winning recording artist Amy Grant, will begin at 8:00 p.m. on Sunday, September 10. Ms. Grant will perform with the Nashville Symphony, led by Guest Conductor David Hamilton, and other surprise pop and country music guests. An elegant cocktail reception will begin prior to the concert at 5:30 p.m., with various food stations relating to five different genres of music that will be performed by Nashville musicians throughout the hall: classical, country, gospel Latin and jazz. Chairs for this event are Barbara Barton and Judy Foster. Ticket prices for both the gala dinner and concert are $200-350, and tickets to the concert only are $50-200. Tickets will go on-sale August 17 and can be purchased by calling the Nashville Symphony box office at 615.687.6565.The Evening with Amy Grant is sponsored by First Tennessee.
Nashville Chamber Orchestra: Music without Boundaries Gala - Monday, September 11 at 8:00 p.m.Classical, country, jazz, bluegrass, folk and gospel will all share the stage at the Nashville Chamber Orchestra's Music Without Boundaries Gala, celebrating the ensemble's first performance as resident orchestra in the new Schermerhorn Symphony Center, on Monday, September 11 at 8 p.m.Hosted by Marty Stuart, the concert will feature performances by stars from the Grand Ole Opry, the Fisk Jubilee Singers, Turtle Island String Quartet, singer/songwriter Darrell Scott, Stephen Seifert on the mountain dulcimer, David Schnaufer playing the Tennessee music box, and guitar great John Jorgenson. Led by NCO music director Paul Gambill, the concert will also include the world premiere of Groove in the Louvre by NCO Music Alive Composer-in-Residence David Balakrishnan, Aaron Copland's stirring Appalachian Spring, and the NCO's signature work Blackberry Winter by ConniEllisor. Desserts will be served for the entire audience at intermission.The Gala Reception will begin at 5:30 pm in the Hall of Fame Park and will include hors d'oeuvres representing Nashville's diverse culinary repertory.Tickets for both the reception and concert are $250 to $350. Tickets for the concert only are $100. For more information or tickets call the NCO Ticket Office at 615.256.6546 or visit
Other Special Events The Schermerhorn Symphony Center opening events continue into October with a Free Day of Music on Saturday, October 7 from 10:30 a.m. until midnight, hosted by the Nashville Symphony and AmSouth bank. The entire Nashville community is invited to enjoy a rich variety of music in the many spaces of the new Symphony Center. More information, including programming, will be available in late August.

Schermerhorn Symphony Center and the Nashville SymphonySchermerhorn Symphony Center, the new home of the Nashville Symphony, will open on September 9, 2006. Designed by David M. Schwarz/Architectural Services, Inc., Akustiks, and Fisher Dachs Associates, the 197,000-square-foot Symphony Center will transform Nashville's musical landscape and become the cultural heart of the city's flourishing downtown area.The Nashville Symphony, led by President and CEO Alan D. Valentine, is made up of 82 full-time musicians. Each season, the Symphony performs and presents more than 200 concerts, including classical, pops and Pied Piper children's performances. Founded in 1946, the Nashville Symphony has been a cultural ambassador for the citizens of Middle Tennessee for more than 60 years.
Right Now I'm....

Listening: Our relaxing "spa" music in our lobby...I'm sooo relaxed...ahhhhh

Wearing: Suit and tie for work

Feeling: Full and satisfied after a great lunch at Vinh Long, a local Vietnamese restaurant

Reading: "Classical Nashville: Athens of the South"

Wishing: I had a larger income so I could do more things for myself, my family, friends and others.

Deciding: How I want my website to look and feel to get my work and my passion out there and make it interesting.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Like a fine wine the Ryman ages so gracefully...

The Ryman Auditorium has been nominated, for the third time in a row, for Pollstar's Theatre of the Year. The category the Ryman is in is, Theatre of the Year Indoor Venue with under 6,000 seats. It is a tough category because all of the other theatres are top notch in so many ways but the voters have been swayed by the history, charm, acoustics and much more for the last two years.

All it takes is a tour or to attend a concert to feel the magic that happens there.
I have had the pleasure of seeing Allison Krauss open for Bill Monroe there, Phil Lesh and Friends, David Grisman and many more at the Ryman and I'm awestruck with each show and how the venue pulls out such great stuff from most anyone that plays there. I've often heard and read where an artist will play there for the first time and be just fall in love with the acoustics, history and overall ambiance.

When I saw Allison Krauss and Union Station play there they did a couple of the songs without using microphones or speakers. It was truly "unplugged" and yet you could hear every word and all of the instruments weaving around each other. I have seen hundreds of concerts over the years and I've never experienced a band try that at any other venue. I think that spoke of the acoustics, of course, but it shows that the Ryman is like an old friend and you felt as though the band and the Ryman were pulling you in to whisper a secret in your ear. That is what it is a true and dependable friend that delights everyone who spends some time with it.

Some of the competition for the award:
Radio City Music Hall (New York, NY)
Dodge Theatre (Phoenix, AZ)
Fox Theatre (Atlanta, GA)
Gibson Amphitheatre (Universal City, CA)
Nokia Theatre at Grand Prairie (Grand Prairie, TX)
Ryman Auditorium (Nashville, TN)

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Boots and more boots with deals to boot....

Today while out having a delicious meal in my fair city, I met Dave. Dave is the Manager of Boot Corral which is located on Lower Broadway and today is when I heard the news of their daily special of....drum roll please....BUY ONE PAIR OF BOOTS AND GET TWO PAIRS FREE. Now how in the world can you beat that? I'm not really a boot kinda guy but I'm giving some serious thought to going down and buying a pair for me and if I don't want three pairs then I will use the extras as gifts. They also work with the local hotels and conventions for gifts and often sell hats in various colors to help groups stay together and they use boots and hats for table settings as well. They are creative and fun and are more then just your typical western outfitter. They are part of what makes Lower Broadway so much fun and they add charm with a good helping of local flavor.

Boot Country
304 Broadway in downtown Nashville
(615) 259-1691

Monday, August 21, 2006

Corey, Nashville's Culinary Concierge is on the loose...

Hermitage Cafe
71 Hermitage Ave, Nashville Tn

Main dish
Bar-B-Q Beef Ribs
turnip greens, new potatoes with cornbread

A funky little diner that brings you a real side of Nashville where you will find lots regulars who know each other and come for the good food. You will find alot of starving artists that frequent here because its like a second home with a staff that is like family. Enjoy the breakfast special of biscuits and gravy, sausage and fried potatoes with a couple of eggs and sip on some coffee without breaking the bank. The lunch is equally as good with food that is good and will leave you happy to have found this out of the way place. The staff has fun with everyone and no one is a stranger, for long.

Pros: Food, staff, old school diner

Cons: Worn look in some areas, tablecloths

Star Cafe
429 Main Street, Goodlettsville Tn

Main dish
Fried chicken breast and Fried Catfish
pasta salad, green beans and cornbread.
naner pudding aka banana pudding

This is such a great local restaurant for a few different reasons. It is in an old house that still has the multiple rooms that are now dining areas. Big windows, wooden floors and mismatched furniture gives the feeling of visiting an eccentric friends house in the sense that is warm and inviting They have a great staff that is helpful and pleasant and each evening they welcome singer/songwriters to come and practice their craft, as long as the schedule a time. Take the time to relax and enjoy and if you dont know what to try ask for a suggestion.

Pros: Janine and Jen because they are so sweet and do a great job. Mouth watering food that is the epitome of Southern/Soul food and the way it satisfies the taste buds and with the nice size helpings it will leave you full.

Chef's Market
900 Conference Drive, Goodlettsville Tn

Main dish
Hot Chicken Salad
green beans almondine, fried corn nuggets and and herb roll with parsesan cheese dusted on top

This was my first visit and I liked the look of the restaurants interior because once you get inside you would never believe that its in a strip mall and the food smelled delicious. The chicken, corn nuggets and the herb roll were a delight for the taste buds. The green beans were good but they could have had more taste.

Pros: Serving staff were very nice and quick to offer suggestions and describe the food and what was in it. The food was very good
Cons: I saw some workers using their hands to put nachos into bags and they had not washed their hands after using the phone, touching their hair, etc...I didn't like that.

Buca Di Beppo
1722 Galleria Blvd, Franklin Tn

Large garlic bread with mozzerella
Main dish
Macaroni Rosa
Chicken with Lemon
Fresh Salmon with Pesto

Always a fun place to eat with its funky decor that makes you think you stepped into a 3 generations old family restaurant. For a full experience and to see what really goes on in the kitchen make reservations for the kitchen table and watch it all unfold while you salivate. Even though this is part of a chain I still enjoy the quality of food and service. The macaroni rosa was a delicious dish but the lemon chicken and the fresh salmon made love to my taste buds and left them totally satisfied and wanting more. Full of flavor and the helpings are huge so be sure you know how hungry you are before you order the family size dishes, otherwise you will have dinner for a few more nights. Our server was John and he provided not only perfect service but he was witty and fun. He was also the bartender and he has some great bar tricks...*hint* Ask to see the "Full glass of water toss across the bar" and the "Samuari orange trick." You can find him working the bar Wednesday thru Sunday.

Pros: John our server, the food quality and taste, atmosphere, leftovers

Cons: Tablesclothes not shaken or cleaned on two tables we sat at. I found that to be just absurb that they could'nt do a better job of keeping the tables clean

1110 Caruthers Avenue

Half of a 10K Lira sandwich/ Half of a Sir Signore sandwich

A great little cheese shop that offers imported cheeses, gourmet food store, custom sandwiches, salads and soups. The staff is very helpful with questions about the cheeses and help you choose what is going to please you. The sandwiches are outstanding because they offer lots of taste, are big in size and are very unique. The variety of tastes that come out of each sandwich is unbelievable and wonderful to experience. The cannoli was perfection and I had two but I would be tempted to get more because of the taste and the way it just like salvation because it touched my soul. Yep it was that good

Pros: Staff, cheese, sandwiches, cannoli

Cons: Only one small table on the inside, never enough time to try it all
Poets Day

Today is Poet's Day and a time to celebrate this wonderful art. I thought that the Tennessee Poet Laureate, Maggi Vaughn, had the perfect poem for today and for our state in general.

"Who We Are"
The Bicentennial of Tennessee 1796-1996

The fertile soil of TennesseeGrew more than corn, tobacco, and cotton,
It grew a crop of people who areTrailblazers,
child raisers, flag wavers, soul savers.
Like the roots of the tulip poplar,
Our feet are planted deeply
Into good living, neighbor giving, God fearing.
Like the iris, buttercup and wild daisies,
Our towns have sprung up
In valleys, basins, mountains, plains and plateaus
That house cabins, mansions and hillside chateaus.
We're the one-room schoolhouse in the hollow;
We're the university grad and the front-porch scholar.
We're Davy Crockett at the Alamo,
Sergeant York, World War I hero.
We're Cordell Hull who served Roosevelt;
We're Chief Sequoyah and his Cherokee alphabet.
We're W.C. Handy and the Memphis Blues;
We're Ida B. Wells and Civil Rights news,
And Grand Ole Opry with old wooden pews.
We're "Rocky Top" and "Tennessee Waltz" the same;
We're "Star Spangled Banner" before the game.
We're mockingbirds singing Appalachian folk songs;
We're country church sing-alongs.
We're hand clappers, toe tappers, knee slappers
And Mama's lap lullaby nappers.
We're Jackson, Johnson and James K. Polk;
We're city slickers and poor hill folk;
We're Anne Dallas Dudley and the Suffrage Vote.
We're John Sevier, Don Sundquist and governors galore;
We're congressmen, mayors and Vice President Gore.
We're Wilma Rudolph's run for the goldAnd Sunday golfers' eighteenth hole.
We're Christmas Eve and the Fourth of July;
We're 4-H and homemade chess pie.
We're TVA rivers, creeks and man-made lakes;
We're ruts in dirt roads and interstates.
We're all religions, creeds and peoples of race;
We're Tennesseans who love the home place.
We're the Volunteer State and will always be
Ready to go when someone's in need.
As our trees turn green and our barns turn gray.
We celebrate our two hundredth birthday.
We know we've done our best, stood the test,
And will be laid to rest
In the fertile soil of Tennessee.

Maggi Vaughn
P. O. Box 486Bell Buckle, TN 37020
(931) 389-6878

The inspiration for her work are the people of Tennessee and its rich history. I think she does a fantastic job of showing just who the people of this great state are and what we are like.

This poem was used with permission from Maggi Vaughn. Thank you so much

Thursday, August 17, 2006

My Nashville

I have read a book called "My South" and I love it. If you get a chance to read it, do it because it is a wonderful book that gives you the feel of what makes the South so special.

I would like to create something here called "My Nashville" here and hear how you all feel about Nashville. I want to hear from Nashvillians and people that have visited our great city. I want to know what part of Nashville touches you deep in your heart and why you live here or wish you lived here.

I look forward to hearing your input.

My Nashville is walking around inside the Ryman and imagining the history and wishing the walls could talk.

by Craig McMahon; Robert St John; Bryan Curtis

My south is home. It’s the tall pines under which I played in my youth. It’s the soft red clay that was a key ingredient in my mud pies.

In my South, people still say “please” and “thank you,” “yes, ma’am’ and “no, sir.”

My South is sunset symphonies and fine wines…and southern R&B so alive that you can’t sit still and gospel so good it brings you to tears.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Timeless in Tennessee:
small town square and carnival

Monday, August 14, 2006

Nashville has some outstanding architecture and I enjoy walking or driving around and seeing all that we have here. Some of the true jewels we save and preserve and others I see in different states of repair or slowly wearing. I'm struck by all the Greek Revival architecture we have in the area and how it is so ironic that we don't have the largest Greek population and yet they have influenced so much of our city and state. Thinking of how we are the "Athens of the South" and how we have cities and towns around the state that bear the name of Greek cities. For example we have Athens, Sparta, Carthage, Alexandria, Antioch (Nashville suburb).

So many people that visit Nashville and Tennessee don't realize all of our history. Mind you, I don't get upset over it because I don't know all of the history of other cities and states but I wonder if the think Nashville is only like Hee Haw or something like that. We are so much more then that and yep when the Schermerhorn Symphony Center is completed it will be another jewel for Nashville. So the next time you are out and about in Nashville, take the time to realize there is a lot more then you might think. Nashville is such a great city and is much more than a stereotype and when you see our beauty and grace while understanding how we have a much more complex history then just a bunch of country will see why people love living here and visiting here. You will see a great city to be proud of .

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Out and about in Nashville

Eating my way through Nashville
Week of August 7-13

Hot Diggity Dog,
614 Ewing Avenue, 615-255-3717

2 Chicago dogs, 1 order of fries and a soda.

This was my second visit and I love the food. The staff is very pleasant and happy to help with any questions with one of the owners being from Chicago, thus an expert. The hot dogs are delicious and the fries are perfect with a crispy outside that open to reveal a real potato flavor inside, which is hard to find anymore. A family friendly place with four tables outside and a small area inside.

1918 Broadway, 615-329-6674

1 Nosh Dip aka French Dip with fries and coffee

A local favorite that provides a taste of New York without leaving Nashville. The sandwich was very good with tender and delicious roast beef, jack cheese, grilled onions and au jus. I have been here many times and have always enjoyed the sandwiches, breakfast and salads. Some of the servers who have provided impeccable service each and every time include Ashley, April, Debra and Jason. This is also a place where you may be surprised at who you might see eating here, sometimes celebrities

Le Peep
5133 Harding Pike

1 Desperado skillet and fruit tea

A classy little place on the west side of Nashville that provides exceptional breakfast and lunch. The Desparado has a bed of peasant potatoes covering the plate and they are covered with melted cheddar cheese, diced chorizo sausage, homemade salsa, green chilies and is topped off with two basted eggs sitting on the top. I have also had the eggs benedict here and I enjoyed it very much and if you are wanting a little something to hold you until the main dish arrives, then try Gooey Buns. They offer a flavored coffee of the day as well as a mouth watering fruit tea that comes with a carafe so you dont have to wait for refills. The staff is pleasant and provides consistant quality.

Rosepepper Cantina & Mexican Grill
1907 Eastland Avenue

1 fish taco, 1 beef enchilada with beans and rice

A funky little neighborhood place that is both fun and serves delicious food. If the weather allows it, sit on the patio!!! It is worth it and it has such an ambiance with a water wall, fans and funky hanging lights. Enjoy the beverage menu and explore the subtle shades of taste difference when using different tequilas in the margaritas. I had no idea you could taste such differences and yet most of them delighted my tastebuds. Okay, on to the food...the white fish taco was very tasty and we had our fish fried instead of grilled for this visit and it worked well in tandem with the shredded cabbage, Baja sauce and pico de gallo that top it. Next was a beef enchilada that was simple and yet did all the things good food can do to your taste buds. The beef was tender, juicy and was a perfect foil for the beer and margaritas.

1787 Gallatin Road North

Hickory smoked bar-b-q pork platter with fried okra, potato salad and turnip greens with cornbread and sweet tea.

The bar-b-q was good but it could have been much better and lacked that good smokiness taste that we all know and love. I had to rely on the sauces for flavor and they are good but all they offer are mild and hot. The sides were full of flavor and I devoured them. The okra had a nice crispy batter that enhanced rather then hide the full flavor of the okra itself. The potato salad and the greens both tasted fresh and were delicious. The sweet tea needed a better taste and should have been sweeter.

More culinary explorations coming, Stick around and join the fun anytime. I'd love to get recommendations, suggestions and input from anyone and everyone.