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3 Top Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in Nashville

These 3 Top Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in Nashville are in a city with a vibrant food scene, and these three hole-in-the-wall restaurants are proof of that. Each restaurant offers a unique experience, from the historic and elegant ambiance of Skull’s Rainbow Room to the casual and lively atmosphere of Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint and the refined and locally-sourced cuisine of Husk. Here is why they are the best restaurants in Nashville for you to discover.

1. Skull’s Rainbow Room – Skull’s Rainbow Room, included as one of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville, is a popular hole-in-the-wall restaurant that has been around since the 1940s. This restaurant is a favorite among locals and tourists alike, and it has received high ratings and positive reviews from its customers. The restaurant is known for its unique atmosphere, which combines a speakeasy vibe with a vintage feel. The food at Skull’s Rainbow Room is also highly regarded, with many customers raving about the steak, seafood, and live music. The restaurant also offers a wide selection of cocktails and spirits, making it a great spot for a night out.

2. Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint – Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint, one of the popular hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville, is a casual barbecue joint located in downtown Nashville. This restaurant is famous for its slow-cooked meats, including brisket, pork shoulder, and ribs. The restaurant has a laid-back atmosphere and is often packed with locals and tourists looking for a tasty and affordable meal. Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint has received high ratings and positive reviews for its delicious food, friendly service, and relaxed atmosphere. Customers recommend trying the brisket and banana pudding.

3. Husk – Husk, another of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville, is a Southern-inspired restaurant that has received numerous accolades for its food and atmosphere. This hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Nashville is known for its inventive dishes that use locally sourced ingredients. The menu changes frequently based on what is available, but popular dishes include the shrimp and grits, fried chicken, and pimento cheese. The restaurant has received high ratings and positive reviews for its exceptional food, attentive service, and rustic atmosphere. Many customers recommend Husk for a special occasion or a romantic dinner.

Overall, each of these top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville has something unique to offer, from Skull’s Rainbow Room’s vintage speakeasy atmosphere and live music to Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint’s mouth-watering slow-cooked meats to Husk’s inventive Southern-inspired cuisine. Whether you’re a local or a tourist, you’re sure to enjoy a delicious meal at any of these popular Nashville restaurants.

3 Top Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in Nashville

1. Skull's Rainbow Room - Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in Nashville

Skull’s Rainbow Room

Address: 222 Printers Alley, Nashville, TN 37201
Hours: Monday-Saturday: 5pm-12am, Closed on Sundays
Phone Number: (615) 810-9631

Skull’s Rainbow Room, included as one of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville, is a unique and popular restaurant located in the historic Printers Alley in downtown Nashville. This establishment has been around since the 1940s and has a reputation for being a classic speakeasy with a vintage feel. The restaurant has a dimly lit, moody atmosphere with velvet-covered chairs and a stage for live music performances. The Skull’s Rainbow Room serves a diverse range of food that includes steaks, seafood, and pasta dishes, as well as a vast selection of cocktails and spirits.

One of the signature dishes at Skull’s Rainbow Room is their Ribeye Steak. This perfectly cooked steak is served with mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables, creating a delicious and satisfying meal. Another favorite dish among customers is their Rainbow Trout Almondine, which features a tender fillet of trout served with roasted almonds, butter, and lemon.

The most unique feature of Skull’s Rainbow Room is their live music performances, which happen nightly. The restaurant hosts talented musicians who play jazz, blues, and swing music, creating a lively and entertaining atmosphere that complements the vintage decor.

The service at Skull’s Rainbow Room is exceptional, with attentive and friendly staff who are knowledgeable about the food and drink menu. The servers are happy to make recommendations and answer any questions about the restaurant or the city of Nashville.

Main Menu Items:

1. Ribeye Steak – This is a 14-ounce cut of Certified Angus Beef served with mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables. The steak is cooked to perfection and has an amazing flavor.

2. Rainbow Trout Almondine – This dish features a tender fillet of trout served with roasted almonds, butter, and lemon. The fish is cooked to perfection and has a delicious flavor that is complemented by the almonds and lemon.

3. Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes – These crab cakes are made with jumbo lump crab meat and served with remoulade sauce and arugula. The crab cakes have a crispy exterior and a moist and flavorful interior.

4. Lobster Ravioli – This dish consists of homemade ravioli stuffed with Maine lobster and served with roasted tomato cream sauce and basil oil. The ravioli is perfectly cooked and filled with chunks of delicious lobster meat.

5. Wild Mushroom Risotto – This is a vegetarian dish that features a creamy risotto made with wild mushrooms, Parmesan cheese, and truffle oil. The risotto has a rich and savory flavor that is perfectly balanced with the earthy taste of the mushrooms.

Customer Reviews:

“I had the pleasure of dining at Skull’s Rainbow Room for a special occasion, and it did not disappoint! The Ribeye Steak was perfectly cooked and had amazing flavor. The live music was a great touch, and our server was incredibly attentive.”

“I stumbled upon Skull’s Rainbow Room while exploring Printers Alley, and I’m so glad I did! The Rainbow Trout Almondine was one of the best dishes I’ve ever had. The atmosphere is like stepping back in time, and the live music made for a memorable experience.”

“Skull’s Rainbow Room is a must-visit restaurant in Nashville. The food is amazing, the atmosphere is one-of-a-kind, and the service is exceptional. I highly recommend the Ribeye Steak and a specialty cocktail from their extensive drink menu.”

In summary, Skull’s Rainbow Room is a unique and popular restaurant in downtown Nashville that offers delicious food, exceptional service, and live music performances. The restaurant’s vintage decor and classic speakeasy atmosphere make it a must-visit spot for locals and tourists alike. They rank amid the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville for good reasons.


2. Martin's Bar-B-Que Joint - Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in Nashville

Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint

Address: Multiple locations in Nashville, with the downtown location at 410 4th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37201
Hours: Monday-Sunday: 11am-9pm
Phone Number: (615) 288-0880

Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint, one of the popular hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville, is a casual, rustic restaurant that specializes in southern-style barbecue. The interior is decorated with a mix of reclaimed wood, metal accents, and vintage signage, creating a cozy and welcoming atmosphere. The restaurant offers a variety of smoked meats, including pulled pork, brisket, and ribs, as well as classic southern sides like mac and cheese, coleslaw, and baked beans.

One of the signature foods at Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint is their Whole Hog Barbecue. This dish is made by slow-cooking a whole hog for over 24 hours, resulting in tender and juicy meat that is packed with flavor. The meat is served with white bread and a selection of barbecue sauces that range from sweet to spicy.

What makes Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint unique is their use of traditional, pit-style smokers. The restaurant uses a combination of hickory and charcoal to smoke their meats, resulting in a delicious smoky flavor that is unique to this style of barbecue. The restaurant also offers a variety of homemade sauces and rubs that are made with fresh ingredients and traditional southern flavors.

The service at Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint is friendly and efficient, with staff members who are knowledgeable about the menu and willing to make recommendations. The restaurant also offers a casual, self-service atmosphere, with customers placing their orders at the counter and then finding a seat in the dining room.

Main Menu Items:

1. Whole Hog Barbecue – This dish features slow-cooked whole hog, pulled and served with white bread and a selection of barbecue sauces. The meat is tender and juicy, with a delicious smoky flavor.

2. Brisket – This dish consists of sliced beef brisket that is slow-smoked to perfection. The brisket has a delicious bark on the outside and is tender and juicy on the inside.

3. Baby Back Ribs – These ribs are smoked low and slow and basted in Martin’s signature BBQ sauce. The meat falls off the bone and has a sweet and tangy flavor.

4. Smoked Turkey – This dish features turkey breast that is smoked and sliced thin. The turkey is juicy and tender, with a delicious smoky flavor.

5. Hot Chicken Sandwich – This sandwich is made with a fried chicken breast that is coated in hot spices and served on a bun with pickles and mayo. The chicken is crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside, with a nice spicy kick.

Customer Reviews:

“I ordered the Whole Hog Barbecue at Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint, and it was amazing! The meat was so tender and flavorful, and the selection of barbecue sauces was a nice touch. The sides were also delicious, especially the mac and cheese.”

“Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint is the best barbecue in Nashville! The brisket was perfectly cooked and had an amazing smoky flavor. The service was also great, with friendly staff who were happy to answer any questions about the menu.”

“I had the pleasure of trying the ribs at Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint, and they did not disappoint! The meat fell right off the bone and had a delicious smoky flavor. The baked beans were also a standout side dish.”

In summary, Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint is a rustic and casual restaurant that specializes in traditional southern-style barbecue. The restaurant’s use of pit-style smokers and homemade sauces and rubs creates a unique and delicious dining experience. The service is friendly and efficient, and the signature Whole Hog Barbecue is a must-try dish. They stand out among the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville.


3. Husk - Hole-in-the-Wall Restaurants in Nashville

Husk

Address: 37 Rutledge St, Nashville, TN 37210
Hours: Monday-Thursday: 5pm-10pm; Friday-Saturday: 5pm-11pm; Sunday: 10am-2pm, 5pm-9pm
Phone Number: (615) 256-6565

Husk, another of the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville, is a fine dining restaurant located in a historic mansion in downtown Nashville. The restaurant specializes in southern cuisine with a focus on locally-sourced ingredients. The interior is elegant and refined, with a mix of traditional and modern elements, including exposed brick walls, high ceilings, and contemporary artwork.

One of the signature dishes at Husk is the Husk Cheeseburger. This dish features a house-ground beef patty that is topped with American cheese, pickles, onions, and special sauce, all served on a homemade sesame seed bun. The burger is a delicious blend of flavors and textures and has been named one of the best burgers in America by numerous publications.

What makes Husk unique is their commitment to using locally-sourced ingredients. The restaurant works with farmers, fishermen, and other local producers to source ingredients for their dishes, and the menu changes frequently based on what is in season and available. Husk also has an on-site garden where they grow many of their own herbs and vegetables.

The service at Husk is top-notch, with a professional and attentive staff that is knowledgeable about the menu and the ingredients used in each dish. The restaurant also offers a fine dining atmosphere, with guests being seated at tables set with white tablecloths and attentive waitstaff.

Main Menu Items:

1. Fried Chicken Skins – This dish features crispy fried chicken skins that are dusted with a spicy seasoning blend and served with a house-made hot sauce. It’s a delicious and unique take on the classic southern fried chicken.

2. Seared Scallops – These seared scallops are served with a creamy corn puree, roasted shiitake mushrooms, and crispy country ham. The scallops are perfectly cooked and the combination of flavors is both decadent and delicious.

3. Wood-fired Ribeye – This dish features a perfectly cooked ribeye steak that is grilled over a wood fire and served with roasted potatoes, grilled onions, and a bone marrow jus. It’s a hearty and satisfying dish that showcases the quality of the locally-sourced beef.

4. Smoked Catfish Dip – This appetizer features smoked catfish that is blended with cream cheese, lemon juice, and spices, then served with crackers and celery. It’s a creamy and flavorful dip that is perfect for sharing.

5. Buttermilk Chess Pie – This classic southern dessert features a creamy filling made with buttermilk and eggs, baked in a flaky crust. It’s a simple but delicious dessert that is perfect for those who love traditional southern cooking.

Customer Reviews:

“I had the Husk Cheeseburger at Husk, and it was amazing! The beef patty was juicy and flavorful, and the special sauce added a nice touch. The fries were also delicious, with a crispy exterior and fluffy interior.”

“Husk is a must-visit restaurant in Nashville! The seasonal menu offers a wide range of southern dishes that are made with fresh and locally-sourced ingredients. The service is also excellent, with attentive and knowledgeable staff.”

“The Husk Cheeseburger lived up to the hype! The patty was perfectly cooked and the pickles added a nice crunch. The restaurant has a beautiful atmosphere, with a mix of traditional and modern elements.”

In summary, Husk is a fine dining restaurant in downtown Nashville that specializes in southern cuisine made with locally-sourced ingredients. The Husk Cheeseburger is a must-try dish and the commitment to using fresh and seasonal ingredients makes the menu unique. The service is excellent and the elegant atmosphere is perfect for a special occasion or romantic night out. They deserve to be ranked among the top hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville.


These hole-in-the-wall restaurants in Nashville have gained a loyal following of locals and tourists alike, and their signature dishes have become must-tries for anyone visiting Nashville. This is why they are the best restaurants in Nashville for you to discover. Whether you’re looking for classic southern comfort food or innovative takes on traditional dishes, these three restaurants in Nashville are definitely worth a visit.



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