I’ve said it before: I’m trying really hard to keep to a budget this year and pare back. But, I do like to eat out. And, I like to support local and eat quality good food. Elizabeth and I picked three of our favorite places that fit this criteria:
1) Woodlands. This vegetarian Indian restaurant is located in the ground floor of The Continental Condominium Bldg (Is it just me or does the name Continental immediately bring to mind that SNL skit with Chritopher Walken?) Restaurants have been repetitively going out of business in this location since I can remember. So, for a cursed location to work, you know the food must be good. I go for lunch about once a week and it’s served buffet style. I hate buffets, but I love this one. I want to be adventurous and try and little of this and that. The menu is easy to eat from if you are a vegan, and the food is tasty enough to enjoy even if you normally have a slab of meat with each meal. I could eat here every day. Elizabeth and I often have StyleBP meetings here. It is open at night and they are great about helping you order off the menu. At night bring some wine for a corking charge.
3415 West End Avenue, Nashville – and check out the google reviews- 36 reviews and 5 stars. Pretty good!
2) Tequilas is in the Strike ‘n Spare shopping center off Charlotte, across from Costco. Several people tipped me off about this little gem over the Holidays. I think I have eaten here 9 times since mid- Dec, including my 4 day in a row streak. The quality difference b/t Tequilas and your typical little Mexican Restaurant is immediately apparent with your first bite of salsa. I highly recommend the queso- order the large size as you will love this cheese dip. Always striving to eat somewhat healthy (I know I just said order the large cheese dip….) I really like the chicken soup and the fish tacos. The chicken soup is ordered off the a la carte menu and is loaded down with chicken, vegetables and avocado. There is no cheese or cream added. It’s a big bowl of perfect. The fish tacos, which I order on corn instead of flour tortilla, are my favorite I have found anywhere. You get three and the fish is pan seared, not fried. These tacos are what brought me back 4 days in a row. My kids all love Tequilas as does my husband. I like the bill as the prices on Charlotte are cheaper than in the ’05 and ’15 zip codes.
3736 Annex Avenue, Nashville- google reviews gives it 5 stars as well.
3) Elizabeth’s turn to sing the praises of Fidos: There’s something you must know about me: I love to hang out in local coffeehouses. Probably it dates back to when I lived in Denver, and there was a cool one on every corner. So, I’ve been hanging out at Fido for coffee for a long time. I knew there was a buzz going on about how fabulous the food was and after thoroughly reviewing the former pet store in Hillsboro Village, it is DROP DEAD AMAZING. The entire fam went there after church and all I could think was that this place was going to be packed to gills with Vandy students nursing hangovers. Not so. And to my surprise, there was no one in line and the only wait I experienced was getting my kids to make a decision. As I looked for the table, Fidos was filled to the brim. Surprisingly, our food came in 10 minutes: egg benedict over cheesy grits with fresh greens, bagel and banana walnut pancakes, and eggs made to order with a soy sausage (quite good!). The entire dining experience was positive and reasonably priced. The other day I popped in with kiddos after school. We ordered sweet potato fries and a huge slab of pink radio cake (made with beets and buttermilk). An entire plate of roasted fries arrived with a fabulous horseradish sour cream dipping sauce for only $2.99. The cake was devoured in a sec. Do I need to say more? OK, I will. Today I stopped by by with my friend Betsy of Plum Charm Bracelets for a quick and inexpensive lunch. I ordered the Fideau– a delicious sandwich on wheat bread with apples, brie, greens and bacon ($1.00 extra for bacon). Betsy got the seafood gumbo with sausage, crayfish and shrimp. Mine was a bargain at $8.99 because it came with a side of Thai Carrot/Coconut soup. Betsy’s was just under $5.00 and came with 2 yummy slices of foccacia bread. We topped off our meal with 2 skinny lattes and felt loved by the universe. Put Fidos on your quick list of great cheap eats.
1812 21st Avenue South, google has 54 reviews and gives Fido 4 stars.