Nashville & Franklin, TN / 2016-12-30

The Hyatt Place that we had so eagerly booked continued to disappoint us, as the breakfast we had so enjoyed on our last trip was less than impressive this time around with the staff having less to work with while the lobby and other areas were under construction.  No worries though, as we did not come to Nashville for the Hyatt Place breakfast.  We set off, with the hope of exploring some new parts of Downtown Nashville, but were quickly presented with snarling traffic around Cumberland Park and the Pedestrian Bridge as tailgaters for the day’s college bowl game (Music City Bowl Nebraska vs. Tennessee) were finding their way to parking lots and the stadium.  We changed plans and headed away from downtown and to the 12 South Neighborhood for some quick food and shopping.

We parked on the street right across from 5 Daughters Bakery yelp_icon, so naturally we had to venture in and try out the doughnuts.  Brooke and I eyed the selection, chose a doughnut each and ate at the counter while people watching those outside.  We could only put away half our doughnut, which were really more like Cronuts and got a to-go box to save the rest for later.

We posed for a few pictures in front of the building thanks to some friendly strangers and then began down 12th Ave South to explore the shops.

We stopped in a few, including Draper James (owned by Reese Witherspoon) and White’s Mercantile.

There were so many eateries, apothecaries and other shops to explore as well, but it was getting on time for lunch and we had something very specific in mind.

We ventured over to East Nashville, steering clear of the growing traffic near the stadium and found street parking near The Pharmacy yelp_icon, an uber-popular burger joint across the the uber-popular taco joint, Mas Tacos.

We put in our name for the wait, which was 2+ hours, but decided to spend some time walking the neighborhood and hanging out in their beer garden.  East Nashville is on the backside of a steep gentrification slope, so in most cases, you will see refurbished houses with an older, untouched home only every once in a while.  The craftsman style reigns here, but in a few places, the original house was torn down to make way for a much more modern style home.  After our walk, and after tiring of waiting in the beer garden, we decided to play our luck at getting a bar seat and fortunate enough for us, we didn’t have to wait long.  After snatching two stools, we were quickly greeted, drinks brought out and our orders taken.  The burgers arrived quickly, and we eagerly enjoyed the famous fare, hoping that its reputation lived up to actual.  We were not disappointed and this time, there was nothing to box up for later.

We had plans scheduled for the evening, but had some time to spare, so we headed back toward our hotel and ended up in Franklin at Our Thrift Store, where we had visited a month earlier with the kids.  We made a stop back by the hotel to change for the night and grab a quick respite and then it was back to Main Street Franklin.

We bought tickets for the Holly Trolley Christmas Lights Tour through Brentwood and and Franklin.  Even though it was after Christmas, we figured most people would still have their lights up.

The Holly Trolley

The trolley served up coffee, hot chocolate and cookies as we made our way through some amazing neighborhoods in Brentwood and made our last stop at Sunny Side Lights.

Sunny Side Lights

We returned to main street and strolled down the road frozen as can be, stopping in a few shops and checking in our dinner reservations at The Red Pony yelp_icon.

The Christmas Tree in Downtown Franklin

From our previous visit, we knew to ask for the special appetizer (showed up on the menu as VIP APP) that they will give sometimes to first time visitors and for other reasons.  It is a flourless gnocchi in a cream sauce that may have been the best thing we ate the entire night.

Flourless Gnocchi at Red Pony

We thoroughly enjoyed the rest of our meal as well and, exhausted, we returned to the hotel and were again quickly off to sleep.

This was Day 2 of our New Year’s in Nashville CLEW-less trip.  Check out the rest of the trip here!

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