If I could concept a restaurant of my own, City House would be my model. Tucked away from downtown Nashville in historic Germantown, the restaurant lives in a brick cottage-like building. As you walk toward the front door, you’re greeted by a rustic screen porch full of diners.
The interior is softly lit and features high ceilings, exposed vents and industrial lighting. In one word, it’s inviting. Wall to wall, it’s swarming with guests, who look both relieved to have made a reservation ahead of time and genuinely happy to be dining there. My dad and I blended into the crowd after first looking like kids in a candy store – awing over the décor and hip ambiance.
There was no doubt in my mind that the food would be flawless. Earlier in the day, my dad (new to the Yelp scene) got down to business, researching reviews. Not only is the site smothered with ultra-optimistic, rave reviews of the restaurant, but you will also find paragraphs on paragraphs explaining every precise thing that won diners over.
Dining with your dad definitely has its perks. First of all, you experience less guilt about splurging an extra few bucks for a nice glass of wine. (We both had a glass of Lambrusco). Secondly, you can order what you want and as much as you want without draining your own personal bank account. Hehe – thanks dad! One day I’ll pay back the favor…or my husband will.
With our waiter’s suggestions at the forefront of my mind, I chose the zucchini salad with wheat berries, torpedo onions, pecan pesto and pecorino cheese as my appetizer. Here I go again saying, “It was one of the best things I’ve ever eaten,” but I truly mean it. I didn’t realize that I loved raw zucchini so much, but since I had it at City House, I haven’t thought about anything else. There was a perfect balance of textures; especially the pecan pesto, which added a great, unique touch. I’m on a mission to recreate this salad in my own kitchen.
We read rave reviews about the restaurant’s pizza, so decided to give it a try. Continuing with our waiter’s suggestions, we decided on a pie with corn, ricotta, pecorino, garlic, oregano and chilies. He also recommended we spice things up with a fried egg on top of our pizza – a trend I’ve recently noticed atop several different dishes. So we did. And it was to die for.
If I was dining with anyone else, I would’ve transitioned straight from the pizza to the check…or maybe another glass of wine. But good ole dad wanted dessert. In fact, he insisted we each have our own. He chose the Coffee Cream Soda Cake with coffee caramel gelato and sorghum graham crumbs – so his style. I went along with what we saw another guest order, the Buttermilk Panna Cotta with peach jelly and buttermilk cornmeal cookies. Both were delicious, but I must argue that my choice was far superior.
If you’re looking for the “it place” for fine dining in Nashville, City House is it. I made reservations two weeks prior, and after witnessing people begging at the front door to get in, you should to.
City House, 1222 4th Ave N, Nashville, TN