There are a handful of restaurants in Nashville that have reached the epitome of the dining scene. The elusive must-try, the envy of all restaurant start-ups, what many can only dream to attain. It’s one of the places where you’re better off with reservations, and you better book them a few weeks in advance! Whether you’ve lived in Nashville for 6 months or you’re nearly a native, you’ve already narrowed the field down based on this description alone. As you count them up (likely on one hand), City House ranks among these elite, elevating local dining and receiving national recognition.
Nestled in the emerging Germantown neighborhood west of downtown, City House begin it’s rise to restaurant stardom in 2007, paving the way for its ambitious predecessors. Making its neighbors seem considerably ordinary, the restaurant’s whimsical domain appears as if it should be kept secret. The foliage is strategically placed, concealing the inner workings of the space, enticing those who pass to come closer. In the evenings, spotlights illuminate the house’s appropriately distressed façade just enough to make it seem as if it’s a private residence, as if you must have permission to enter. The interior is clean and simple without being overly modern, the bar sits conveniently close to the entrance, coaxing you to order one of their famed crafted cocktails as you wait for your table. The bar is first come, first serve, so if you decide to venture to City House without reservations, there’s still a chance you won’t have long to wait if you’re patient! City House emits the welcoming, yet almost unattainable sense of the home of your token “chic” friend you could only aspire to be.
However impressive the atmosphere is, the menu overshadows it with its lengthy list of Italian options, ranging from small plates to entrees. Staying seasonal and fresh, the menu is always subject to change at the discretion of those at the helm of the City House kitchen. Their featured Sunday Supper changes weekly, creating demand that books reservations out for weeks. The Antipasti is perfect for sharing, the pizza is critically acclaimed (especially the Belly Ham and they may recommend putting an egg on it!), and the larger plates introduce flavor combinations that are far beyond your average Italian dish.
The food is great, really great. But you should try it for yourself. Even if you don’t prefer Italian food, you’re on a budget, or you don’t have reservations, City House is still worth a date night, girls night, or for impressing a business client. You don’t have to consider yourself a foodie to thoroughly enjoy your experience at City House. From the ambience, to the friendly and knowledgeable wait staff, to the menu – it’s a Nashville must. In the years since opening it’s doors in the (previously quite) Germantown neighborhood, City House remains at the epitome of the restaurant elite amongst a quickly growing sea of new restaurants and renowned chefs. So as local dining continues to expand and excel, if you haven’t already had the pleasure, it’s time you tried one of the shining examples of Nashville’s past and it’s future.
Middle: Octopus Bottom: Belly Ham Pizza
Check out their website on the Eat Like a Native page!
TIP: It’s street parking – so mind your street signs so you don’t get towed!