Sometimes you luck out and hit two great restaurants in succession. Such was the case in Nashville this weekend past. Thanks again goes to Tate and Zoe for picking eateries we'll certainly try again.
Brunch. Henrietta Red.
We traveled to Nashville for a visit with our son, Tate, and his girlfriend, Zoe, before we head west for winter. We arrived on Saturday afternoon in time to catch a portion of Georgia getting whipped by LSU in the SEC Championship game. Tate had asked about dinner and we told him to make a reservation.
He and Zoe put their heads together and made a reservation at Lockeland Table, a restaurant at which none of us had eaten.
Hal Holden-Bache is an award-winning chef and has received a James Beard nomination for Best New Restaurant in 2013.
The bar and dining room at Lockeland Table is almost always full of neighborhood residents chatting to one another while enjoying fine food and drink, but even if you enter as a stranger, you’ll probably leave with some new friends from this convivial eatery. A roaring wood fire in the pizza oven further warms the ambiance, and the specialty pies that emerge from the infernal heat are ideal for splitting as an appetizer unless you’re too selfish to share. The rest of the menu features Southern fare with international accents like the mandatory app of chicken liver pâté on Tuscan bread or the rack of lamb with fava beans. -- Thrillist
Melanie and I are passing through Birmingham, here for a few days. We're parked at my dentist office in Homewood, running a few errands and then lunch.
Johnny's was/is one of our go-to places for lunch when we lived in Birmingham. Our son, Tate, had a summer job there.
James Beard Foundation Best Chef Semi-finalist three years running, Tim Hontzas knows his Greek and three.
Johnny's Meat and Three
Timothy Hontzas is a Homewood Chef and restaurant owner of Johnny's - one of the top meat and three lunch spots in Birmingham. He is also a proud Greek-American. His grandfather came to America from Greece on a cattle boat and worked his way up in the restaurant business before starting his own successful restaurant. Johnny's Greek And Three looks at Chef Hontzas and the role of Greek immigrants in shaping Birmingham dining.
Sometimes it pays to shoot from the hip. While traveling towards Jekyll Island last week from a Boondockers spot in rural Georgia, we made the decision to stop in Savannah for groceries. After groceries were procured, it was lunch time, we're in Savannah, so why not find a spot for our dining pleasures.
I Googled "Best Lunches Savannah" and at the top of the list was Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room in the historic district. I was hungry, didn't read anything further, assumed it may be okay, because hungry and that's all that mattered at the moment. After parking on one of the Live Oak covered avenues, we walked the short block and a half to the restaurant using my iPhone as our guide. If not for a lovely couple from New Hampshire, we might not have found the understated entrance.
Inside we were treated to what can only be described, in this, the season, as an early Thanksgiving spread that would make your grandmother blush. Mrs. Wilkes is a family-style seating/serving/meat and many, restaurant. The food is well-prepared and plentiful. Go hungry, no, go very hungry.
Our table mates were from New Hampshire (the folks who helped us find the Mrs. Wilkes), New Jersey, and New York. We had a great time getting to know some things about them and did I mention the food is plentiful. Prepare to eat many good dishes and maybe make room for a nap afterwards, but don't miss lunch there.
We celebrated my birthday Sunday evening at The Ordinary. Great ambiance, great locally sourced seafood.
Once again my Google search using "James Beard" and "insert city du jour" paid off.
Last evening we dined in Charleston at The Grocery. It was a memorable celebration of our wedding anniversary. When in Charleston, don't miss the opportunity to treat yourselves to the talents Chef Kevin Johnson has to offer you. Definitely recommended. Great local foods, great service, nice atmosphere.
We had a couple of great dinners at Ani Ramen in Summit. It's a bit noisy, but their Signature Dish, Short Rib Ramen, is superb.
After spending a few days in Essex Junction, Vermont, Melanie said we should check out Shelburne, Vermont, just down the road a piece. She wanted to go by the local Episcopal church there to see the Tiffany Windows, but we were too early for anyone to be at the church and so, after taking a few photos of the outside of the church and giving me instructions to find breakfast, we took a short ride to the Inn at Shelburne Farms.
Our hosts in Essex Junction mentioned Shelburne Farms to us without much explanation, so we didn't have any idea what to expect. Upon arriving, we drove through a stone gate, then through a series of pastoral settings with barns and livestock. The drive into the inn is just over a mile ending in an idyllic setting next to Lake Champlain.
Checking in with the inn restaurant hostess, we were asked if we were a part of the James Beard Foundation group staying at the inn. At this point, I'm thinking we surely must be at the right and proper place for a great breakfast. 😎
Turns out, set and setting were great as was the breakfast. Afterwards, we walked the grounds a bit and then made our way on to the White Mountains for the evening. The Inn at Shelburne Farms is a great experience. Food is worth a try too. Reservations may be had, but not required.
You may also want to check out various farm-related programs they offer on site.
From their webpage:
From 1886 to 1902, William Seward and Lila Vanderbilt Webb consolidated 32 of these farms into a 3,800-acre agricultural estate. Its landscape design was inspired by Central Park landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted. The Webbs’ grand model horse farm began a tradition of agricultural innovation. With increasing financial pressures by the 1950s, the family shifted away from maintaining the main house and barns to focus on raising dairy and beef animals.
In 1972, Webb descendants decided to open and share Shelburne Farms with the world and give it a new purpose. In 1984 the family contributed the property to the nonprofit educational organization that owns it today.
Today, Melanie and I rode the easy six miles on the Ashuelot Recreation Rail Trail into Keene, New Hampshire for, among other things, lunch.
We'd received some guidance from one of our hosts, Laura, at Ashuelot River Campground, but, while we got names for places she likes, we didn't get any particulars from her. We were fortunate, once we reached Main Street, to happen on Odelay, one of Laura's recommendations.
Odelay is a phonetic English rendering of the Mexican slang interjection "órale", which translates roughly to "listen up" or "what's up?" While I've been unable to get the name of the chef at Odelay, suffice it to say he has talent. He fuses Vietnamese and Mexican cusines, among others, for really delicious combinations. Fusion.
Odelay doesn't have much of a web presence, but the person who assisted us with ordering mentioned the chef had a food cart before opening Odelay and sold street food.
Odelay is located at 44 Main Street in downtown Keene.