Our lives intersected nearly a decade ago when we were all employed at the same advertising agency. Five new jobs and nine years later, we now catch up over cocktails instead of a conference table. Join us as we visit and review Nashville’s culinary hotspots, five dishes at a time.
My mother has probably never prepared any dish the same way twice, so I’m seasoned to enjoy varied cuisine. A lone experimentress within my relationship and core group of friends, I was drawn to the supper club – our original name – by a greater force: that force within each of us that desires the spice of life no matter how fulfilled we are by the familiar. A chameleon in both my personal style and my daily craft (I sampled two other ad agency hats before landing happily as a copywriter), my palate desires the same. Give me variety or give me death! I love all veggies, cheeses, creative condiments and am usually the last to be ready to order.
I grew up around no shortage of classic comfort food, but in my late twenties, I had to change my eating habits due to food intolerances. Don’t get me wrong, I would live on chips and queso if I could. But for me, eating out now involves careful questions about what’s in a dish and how it is prepared. Luckily, just because I have to be picky doesn’t mean I have to be boring! My adventurous streak carries into my diet: I love to try new foods! In my own home, I’m always testing new recipes, most of which incorporate some fresh veggies from my garden. My love of food goes hand in hand with my love of travel: I spent more than a week in Italy last year and am looking forward to eating my way through France and Belgium later this summer.
I was raised in a meat-and-potatoes household. My mom served up ‘American’ meals to appease my dad’s preferences and going out to eat meant enjoying the cuisine of Shoney’s and Waffle House. Needless to say, by the time I was of venturing age — and with my first taste of sushi — my taste buds and I were bound for bigger things. I’ll let any foodie recommend ‘til their heart’s content, which has led me to try cricket & molasses lollipops alongside fellow Nashville Dinner Labers – perhaps my bravest exploratory moment yet. On a more regular basis, I love red wine, red meat, any and all seafood and am normally the first to order the chef’s pick.
A fortuitous upbringing exposed me to two very diverse styles of cooking. My nutritionist grandmother believed healthy food should always taste good, and hers did. Homemade fare from the southern side of my family consisted of ham & biscuits, blackberry cobbler and chicken ‘n’ dumplings — all of which tastes pretty good, too. Now, cooking and trying new recipes while drawing from both sides for inspiration is my outlet for creativity and relaxation. I do my best problem solving over my fat-free key lime pie and chicken pesto lasagna. I love a good margarita and fried egg cheeseburger, am usually the first to gush over the wonderful menu choices and then ask for a doggie bag.
The idea for a supper club came to me when Rachael was telling me about her date night to a chain restaurant. We decided there was no better way to try the best and newest restaurants than with girlfriends! Thanks to my Italian grandmother, I grew up around some great food. I’m not much of a risk taker, so I stick to the familiar when dining out, but I’ll try a bite of anything once. That’s why it wasn’t until six years ago when I began working in the hospitality industry that I even tried some of what are my favorite foods today. The one thing that hasn’t changed over the years is that I can’t stand seafood, no matter how much bacon you wrap it in. I love red wine, stinky cheese and am usually the first one to order the brussels sprouts.