Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Culinary Offerings of the South

I was in Nashville for Labor Day Weekend, doing a little visiting with friends and a lot of eating. And after said eating some subsequent falling over in a fit of passionate glory. I just love southern food.

First stop was the Neely's barbecue joint. I love me some ribs, and I love me more some Neely's ribs. Check them out here. I got the rib dinner with BBQ spaghetti (didn't pause long enough to worry about what that was... I just ate it) and cole slaw... yum.

What's up Pat and Gina... call me.

The next day for lunch we stopped at Calypso Cafe, which is a very hip little mediterranean/vegan/bean restaurant in Nashville's quirky East end. I got myself a veggie pita with chips and... what?

Yes. Mashed cinnamon nutmeg sweet potatoes topped with coconut. Whoa.

My last meal in Nashville was at a tiny Italian restaurant that specialized in antipasti. Well. You don't have to twist my arm. This was olive tapanade, goat cheese and peppers, and mascarpone artichoke dip served with these great crispy bread things that probably have a fancy Italian name. It was a light dinner (see enormous veggie pita and half pound of sweet potatoes above, which I ate for lunch), so it was plenty to fill me up. Next time I go back there I'm getting the full platter, and then I can die happy.

And then, on the way home, we stopped in Louisville. Louisville is not on the way home. We went for one reason: to eat this:

This, my dear, beloved readers, is a Kentucky Hot Brown from the Brown Hotel in downtown Louisville. According to my friend Cynthia, a Louisville native, it is the only place to eat one. It is $14 and at a restaurant in the middle of an extremely fancy hotel. We were in shorts and t-shirts, but no one stared at us because they were too busy devouring their own hot browns. It's egg bread, turkey breast, an extremely sinful white sauce, tons of Parmesan cheese, baked to golden brown and topped with bacon.

Lordy. If you want to read more about hot browns, go here. But be prepared to get up immediately and drive to Louisville to eat one. I might do that myself.

All in all, southern dining was everything I wanted it to be. Glory.