Nearly Native Eats: Sinema

In today’s world we’re bombarded with Hollywood productions that have billion dollar budgets, CGI special effects, and symphonic soundtracks. New movies are released in excess and our choices are limitless between Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and physically going to the movie theater. Pair going to the movies with a meal and you’ve got an American pastime: a date night, a girls night, or a post food-coma Thanksgiving Day activity. Although our choices are endless when it comes to planning the perfect dinner and a movie combination, many times we find ourselves returning to the classic stories we all know and love. There’s just something about the simplicity of old Hollywood movies that resonates across generations of viewers. Famed actors like Marlon Brando, Elizabeth Taylor, Eva Gardner, and James Dean are household names even today, withstanding the test of time and date nights alike. Nashvillians now have the privilege of experiencing the golden age of Hollywood films with American cuisine through the lens of buzzworthy new restaurant, Sinema.

Occupying the decades-old Melrose Theater space, Sinema is located in one of the many Nashville neighborhoods undergoing gentrification these days: Berry Hill. Upon your arrival to their Franklin Pike address, you’ll visit the appropriately operational ticket-taker to valet your car, then step through the theater doors and into the 1940s. The entry way doubles as bar and reception area, reminiscent of a swanky era hangout where you might’ve caught Frank Sinatra having drinks with a young Natalie Wood. As you wait for your table grab one of their cleverly crafted cocktails at the glassy bar and take in your surroundings, observing the slightly Gatsby-like décor. Once you’ve slipped through the curtains as if your film is about to start, you’ll take your seat in the intimately lit dining area and be presented with a contemporary and extensive menu. Don’t skimp on your selections. This is the type of place you choose on a night where you want to enjoy the experience; Money and time shouldn’t be a concern.

Try a first course in addition to your entrée. The depth and the diversity of the menu is executed with clean and creative plating. And take some chances. The Americanized dishes will feel familiar but some highlighted ingredients may force you to Google before you order (just to be safe). But don’t worry, although you may expand your palette into uncharted territory Sinema will not disappoint, balancing citrus with savory and sweet with salty. Not only does the atmosphere make you forget that you’re in modern day Middle Tennessee, but the food will leave you wanting to make another reservation right away.

Before you end the night, make your way upstairs to the lounge area that’s sectioned into cozy sitting areas and adorned in an assortment of restored vintage pieces with touches of modern flare. Classic black and white movies play on several of the walls, allowing patrons to enjoy their cocktails with their favorite old Hollywood household names. A night at Sinema transcends decades, more than just your average dinner-and-a-movie night. Adding current flare to a glamorous vintage Hollywood creation, the restaurant brings a new and unique dining perspective to Nashville, reminding us that classics can be made great again; it’s not all about the special effects.

photo (26)Pictured: The Pig and The Peach (Top middle), Barramundi (Bottom Left), Bear Creek Short Rib

Check out their website on the Eat Like a Native page!

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