Thursday, May 17, 2018
We were out the door by about 9:00 and on our way to Pinewood Social for breakfast. The only way I even knew about it is because of Anthony Bourdain’s show Parts Unknown. We chose to sit in the living room part of the restaurant. On one side, they have normal dining tables and on the other side of their massive bar there’s a bunch of comfy chairs and couches that they call the living room. In the very back behind the bar there’s also a bowling alley.
I got their chicken and biscuits. The biscuits were probably the best I’ve ever had and the hash browns it came with were perfectly crispy. Rachel got their Monte Cristo. It looked amazing and she said it was one of the best things she’s eaten. Her deep fried sandwich monstrosity came with a huge bowl of fresh fruit.
The food was amazing. The atmosphere was amazing. And our server Jennifer was fantastic!! We asked for a few recommendations on things to do and places to eat around Nashville she gave us a whole list sorted by neighborhood.
Next stop was the Country Music Hall of Fame! The ticket price for this was insane. In talking $25 each with a student discount. Since she’s not much of a country fan, Rachel chose to head back to the hostel and read while toured to Hall of Fame. I felt like it was over priced for what it was. The special exhibits focused on Loretta Lynn and Shania Twain we’re really cool. The exhibit about the roots and influences of country music was fairly small and I wish there was more of that. The rest of the museum was mostly clothing from country stars throughout the last 50+ years with some instruments here and there. I’m glad I did it because it was still pretty good. It just wasn’t what I was expecting.
There weren’t really any more things in downtown that we wanted to do so we drove about 15 minutes out to Belle Meade Plantation. It’s a plantation style home, but they primarily raised thoroughbred racing horses. A majority of Kentucky Derby winners can trace their lineage back to one of Belle Meade’s sire horses Bonnie Scotland, Enquirer, or Iroquois. Some of the big-name horses that trace their lineage back to Bonnie Scotland include: Sea Biscuit, Secretariat, Affirmed, and this year’s Kentucky Derby winner, Justify. The tour was good, we didn’t get to see all of the house, but it was very informative. Plus, it ended in a wine tasting featuring four of the wines from the Belle Meade winery. I’m not much of a wine drinker, but the four we got to try were pretty decent.
We finished with the tour and walking the grounds and headed over to Shy’s Hill. Shy’s Hill was a battle site in the Battle of Nashville during the Civil War. Now at the base of the hill there’s a memorial to the Minnesota men that lost their lives in the Battle of Nashville. The Battle of Nashville was the bloodiest battle for Minnesotans in all of the Civil War. As a Minnesotan, I’m really glad that there is something to mark the sacrifice of those men of the 5th, 7th, 9th, and 10th infantry regiments.
We went back to our hostel to rest for a while. We went to dinner at Puckett’s with a couple of Canadian ladies that we met at our hostel. After dinner, the four of us headed to Broadway to hit the honky tonks. Most of the honky tonks/bars have multiple levels with fabulously talented musicians performing on each level. We had a few drinks, danced, and people watched until far too late. Let me tell you, the people watching in downtown Nashville is spectacular!!
Friday, May 18,2018
After being out so late the night before we were absolutely exhausted so we slept in. Once we finally decided to get going we got a Lyft over to Biscuit Love in the Gulch. Biscuit Love was one of the places our server at Pinewood Social recommended to us. Just like Hattie B’s the line was out the door. It was only about a 15 minute wait before we ordered. I got biscuits and gravy and a fruit cup. For some reason, the biscuits and gravy come with a kale salad, but that was fine by me. The food was really good and service was fast. We wandered around the gulch for a while, but there wasn’t a ton to do. There were a few little shops and a bunch of restaurants.
We got a Lyft back to our hostel and headed south to Franklin, Tennessee. Outside of Franklin there’s an old historic home called Carnton. The house was built in the 1820s in the federal style. It was later renovated to be a little more of a Greek revival. Like many of the houses on this trip it’s brick and has a huge porch. The house served as a field hospital for the confederates in the Battle of Franklin in late November of 1864. The house had a very uncomfortable feeling about it to me. The two south facing bed rooms on the second floor were uses by surgeons for amputations, and there’s still blood stains on the floor to this day. At the time of the battle those rooms would have been carpeted, but when the home was turned in to a museum they chose to leave the blood stains visible. The tour guide we had knew a lot about the Battle of Franklin, and the tour was probably my favorite of the trip.
Rachel had a family friend a little way out side of Nashville so we drove over to see them. On our way there it started to downpour out of nowhere so hard that we pulled off on to a side street to wait for it to let up a bit, which didn’t take too long. We were out at their house until about 9:30 or so sitting on the porch chatting. It dropped below 75 and even in jeans I thought it was chilly. We got back to our hostel around 10:30 and called it a night.
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