5 Top Hole-in-the-Wall Nashville Restaurants

Last updated on September 24th, 2023 at 11:57 pm

5 Top Hole-in-the-Wall Nashville Restaurants

5 Top Hole-in-the-Wall Nashville Restaurants

These five top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants are part of a delightful culinary scene with an array of tucked-away restaurants waiting to be explored. Among the top hidden gems are The Smiling Elephant, Gabby’s Burgers & Fries, Mas Tacos Por Favor, The Picnic Tap, and Cafe Intermezzo. Each of these unique eateries brings its own distinct flavors, ambiance, and family touch to the table, making them must-visit destinations for food enthusiasts.

From the authentic Thai cuisine at The Smiling Elephant to the mouthwatering burgers at Gabby’s Burgers & Fries, and the delectable Mexican delights at Mas Tacos Por Favor, these restaurants offer a diverse range of culinary experiences that cater to various tastes.

Venturing further into the tucked-away dining scene, one can discover the European-style charm at Cafe Intermezzo, where delicious Viennese Schnitzel and tempting Chocolate Truffle Torte await. Meanwhile, The Picnic Tap offers a laid-back European cafe experience, complete with a delightful Mediterranean Hummus Platter and comforting Baked Spinach and Feta Pasta.

While these five hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants are a delightful introduction to the tucked-away culinary treasures of this city, they are just the tip of the iceberg. This vibrant city boasts numerous more hidden culinary gems waiting to be uncovered. From quaint neighborhood cafes to family-owned bistros and innovative fusion eateries, Nashville has something to satisfy every palate and culinary craving. This is why these are some of the great hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants that are waiting for you to discover them. This list is in no particular order.

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1) Mas Tacos Por Favor

Mas Tacos Por Favor is one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, offering a delightful blend of authentic Mexican cuisine and unique flavors. Situated in the heart of East Nashville, this family-owned and operated eatery has garnered a loyal following due to its warm ambiance, friendly service, and mouthwatering dishes.

The crown jewel of Mas Tacos Por Favor is undoubtedly its iconic Tacos Al Pastor. Slow-cooked marinated pork is thinly sliced and tucked into soft corn tortillas, accompanied by fresh cilantro, diced onions, and a splash of zesty pineapple salsa. Each bite bursts with a symphony of flavors, making it a must-try dish for anyone visiting this remarkable restaurant.

Main Menu Items:

1. Taco Trio: “A trio of mouthwatering tacos – your choice of pastor, carnitas, or vegetarian, served with house-made salsa and pickled jalapeños.” The Taco Trio allows you to sample a variety of flavors, from the rich and savory pastor to the tender and juicy carnitas, or the delightful vegetarian option that boasts a medley of grilled veggies and seasoned beans.

2. Quesadillas de Huitlacoche: “A delightful fusion of flavors, featuring hand-pressed tortillas filled with earthy huitlacoche, melted Oaxaca cheese, and a touch of epazote.” The Quesadillas de Huitlacoche offer a unique and delectable experience, showcasing the restaurant’s commitment to bringing traditional Mexican ingredients to the forefront.

3. Tamales with Salsa Verde: “Traditional tamales made with love, filled with tender pulled chicken, and topped with vibrant salsa verde and a sprinkling of queso fresco.” The Tamales at Mas Tacos Por Favor are a testament to the restaurant’s dedication to preserving age-old recipes, with each bite delivering comforting flavors that transport diners to the heart of Mexico.

Customer Reviews:

“I stumbled upon Mas Tacos Por Favor while exploring East Nashville, and it turned out to be an absolute gem! The Tacos Al Pastor were outstanding – perfectly seasoned and accompanied by the most delicious pineapple salsa. I can’t wait to go back!”

“What a delightful experience! The cozy atmosphere, friendly staff, and the Quesadillas de Huitlacoche stole the show. It’s evident that this restaurant puts heart into their food, and it shows in every bite.”

“Mas Tacos Por Favor brings the taste of home-cooked meals with a modern twist. The Tamales with Salsa Verde were divine, and the warmth of the family-owned atmosphere made the whole dining experience feel like visiting old friends.”

Mas Tacos Por Favor stands as one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, tucked away in East Nashville and steeped in the traditions of authentic Mexican cuisine. This family-owned and operated gem offers a vibrant and inviting setting where guests can savor their signature Tacos Al Pastor and other delectable dishes. They are one of the best hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

Whether it’s the Taco Trio, Quesadillas de Huitlacoche, or the comforting Tamales with Salsa Verde, the culinary journey at Mas Tacos Por Favor is a true celebration of the rich flavors and the love put into every meal. So, if you find yourself in Nashville craving an exceptional Mexican culinary experience, make sure to visit Mas Tacos Por Favor for a delightful dining adventure that will leave you yearning for more. They rank high among the best hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants for good reasons.

2) Gabby’s Burgers & Fries

Gabby’s Burgers & Fries is one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, offering a delightful and unpretentious experience for burger enthusiasts. Situated in the charming neighborhood of Hillsboro Village, this family-owned and operated establishment has earned a reputation for its mouthwatering burgers, friendly service, and inviting ambiance.

At Gabby’s Burgers & Fries, their signature food is none other than the “Gabby Burger.” This delectable masterpiece features a juicy, perfectly seasoned beef patty, topped with melted American cheese, crisp lettuce, ripe tomatoes, pickles, onions, and their special Gabby sauce, all tucked between a toasted artisanal bun. Each bite of the Gabby Burger is a celebration of classic American flavors, and it is undoubtedly the star of the menu.

Main Menu Items:

1. Sweet Potato Fries: “A delightful twist on a classic side, our Sweet Potato Fries are perfectly seasoned and served with a side of our house-made aioli.” These crispy, golden-orange fries offer a sweet and savory combination that complements the burgers and delights the taste buds.

2. The Veggie Burger: “A flavorful plant-based patty made from a blend of fresh vegetables and herbs, topped with avocado, sprouts, tomato, and our signature garlic aioli.” The Veggie Burger at Gabby’s is a true delight for vegetarians and burger enthusiasts alike, offering a burst of wholesome flavors in every bite.

3. Peanut Butter Milkshake: “Creamy vanilla ice cream blended with rich peanut butter and topped with whipped cream and crushed peanuts.” This indulgent Peanut Butter Milkshake provides a perfect ending to any meal at Gabby’s, satisfying any sweet tooth with its luscious combination of flavors.

Customer Reviews:

“Gabby’s Burgers & Fries is a hidden gem! The Gabby Burger was simply divine – the beef patty was perfectly cooked, and the blend of toppings created a symphony of flavors. It’s evident that they put love into their food!”

“I’m not usually a fan of veggie burgers, but Gabby’s changed my mind! The Veggie Burger was packed with delicious vegetables and had the right amount of seasoning. The sweet potato fries were the perfect side to complete the meal.”

“Oh, that Peanut Butter Milkshake! It was the highlight of my visit to Gabby’s. Creamy, rich, and utterly delightful. I’ll be dreaming about it until my next visit!”

Gabby’s Burgers & Fries stands as one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, nestled in the heart of Hillsboro Village. This family-owned and operated burger joint is a haven for burger enthusiasts and those seeking an exceptional dining experience. With their signature “Gabby Burger” stealing the spotlight, each bite is a celebration of classic American flavors. They are one of the popular hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

From the Sweet Potato Fries to the Veggie Burger, Gabby’s caters to diverse palates, ensuring every guest has a memorable meal. And to top it all off, their indulgent Peanut Butter Milkshake adds a sweet note to the culinary journey. If you’re in Nashville and in search of a mouthwatering burger adventure, Gabby’s Burgers & Fries is one of the top tucked-away restaurants that promises to satisfy your cravings and leave you wanting to return for more. They stand out among the popular hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

3) The Smiling Elephant

The Smiling Elephant is one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, offering a delightful culinary journey through the flavors of Thailand. Situated in the vibrant area of Sylvan Park, this family-owned and operated eatery exudes warmth and charm, creating a welcoming atmosphere for diners to enjoy their authentic Thai dishes.

The Smiling Elephant’s signature dish is the “Pad Thai,” a mouthwatering stir-fry noodle dish that encapsulates the essence of Thai cuisine. Thin rice noodles are wok-tossed with succulent shrimp or tender chicken, bean sprouts, scrambled eggs, and an exquisite blend of tangy tamarind, palm sugar, and fish sauce. Topped with crushed peanuts and fresh lime, each bite of Pad Thai takes diners on a culinary adventure to the bustling streets of Thailand.

Main Menu Items:

1. Green Curry with Chicken: “A tantalizing Thai classic, our Green Curry is made with tender chicken, bamboo shoots, bell peppers, and Thai basil in a creamy coconut milk broth.” The Green Curry boasts a perfect harmony of flavors – the creaminess of coconut milk, the spiciness of green chilies, and the aromatic fragrance of Thai herbs.

2. Tom Yum Soup: “An invigorating hot and sour soup with a choice of shrimp or tofu, infused with lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, and a burst of fresh lime juice.” The Tom Yum Soup at The Smiling Elephant is a zesty and comforting delight that awakens the taste buds with its delightful combination of sour and savory flavors.

3. Panang Curry with Beef: “A rich and flavorful curry featuring tender slices of beef, simmered in a velvety Panang sauce, and garnished with kaffir lime leaves and crushed peanuts.” The Panang Curry is a must-try for curry enthusiasts, offering a luxurious and hearty experience that showcases the depth and complexity of Thai cuisine.

Customer Reviews:

“The Smiling Elephant is a true hidden gem! The Pad Thai was absolutely delightful – the balance of sweet, sour, and umami flavors was on point. It’s no wonder they are considered one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.”

“I was blown away by the authenticity of the Green Curry. Each spoonful was a burst of flavors, and the chicken was perfectly tender. This restaurant is a family-owned treasure that deserves all the praise.”

“I tried the Tom Yum Soup, and it was an absolute flavor explosion! The blend of lemongrass and lime leaves made it so refreshing, and the tofu absorbed all the deliciousness of the broth. I can’t wait to explore more of their menu!”

The Smiling Elephant, nestled in the heart of Sylvan Park, is truly one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants. This family-owned and operated establishment takes diners on an authentic journey through the vibrant and aromatic world of Thai cuisine. They are another of the great hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

With their signature Pad Thai stealing hearts and taste buds, each dish on their menu reflects the rich culinary heritage of Thailand. From the comforting Tom Yum Soup to the flavorful Green Curry and Panang Curry, every bite is a testament to the restaurant’s commitment to delivering top-notch Thai flavors. If you’re in Nashville and seeking an unforgettable dining experience, The Smiling Elephant is a destination that will leave you with a smile on your face and a contented belly. They deserve to be ranked high among the great hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

4) The Picnic Tap

The Picnic Tap is one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, offering a unique and inviting dining experience as a family-owned and operated establishment. Situated in a charming corner of East Nashville, this restaurant combines the pleasures of a picnic with an impressive selection of craft beers, making it a must-visit spot for locals and visitors alike.

The Picnic Tap’s signature food item is the “Gourmet Sliders Platter.” This delectable platter features an assortment of mini burgers, each crafted with premium ingredients and inventive toppings. From juicy Angus beef sliders with melted cheddar and caramelized onions to tender pulled pork sliders with tangy BBQ sauce, the Gourmet Sliders Platter is a tantalizing journey through a variety of flavors and textures.

Main Menu Items:

1. Nashville Hot Chicken Sliders: “A fiery twist on a classic, our Nashville Hot Chicken Sliders are made with tender and crispy chicken, drenched in spicy hot sauce, and served with cool coleslaw on a soft slider bun.” These sliders pay homage to Nashville’s iconic hot chicken, offering a perfect balance of heat and refreshment in every bite.

2. Vegetarian Caprese Sliders: “A delightful combination of fresh mozzarella, juicy tomatoes, basil pesto, and a balsamic glaze, served on mini ciabatta buns.” The Vegetarian Caprese Sliders showcase The Picnic Tap’s commitment to offering diverse options, appealing to both meat lovers and vegetarians alike.

3. Loaded Chili Cheese Fries: “Crispy golden fries topped with savory chili, melted cheese, jalapeños, and a dollop of sour cream.” The Loaded Chili Cheese Fries are a delectable indulgence, perfect for sharing with friends or enjoying alongside one of their craft beer selections.

Customer Reviews:

“The Picnic Tap truly lives up to its reputation as one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants. The Gourmet Sliders Platter was a hit at our table – each slider was bursting with flavor, and the variety kept everyone happy. We’ll definitely be back for more!”

“As a vegetarian, I was thrilled to find such delightful options at The Picnic Tap. The Vegetarian Caprese Sliders were a breath of fresh air, and the flavors were incredibly satisfying. Their beer selection was impressive too!”

“The Nashville Hot Chicken Sliders were a taste sensation! Spicy, crispy, and downright addictive. The Picnic Tap’s casual picnic-style setting made for a relaxed and enjoyable dining experience.”

The Picnic Tap is undeniably one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, nestled in the heart of East Nashville. As a family-owned and operated establishment, it captures the essence of a picnic setting with a delightful touch of craft beers. Their signature Gourmet Sliders Platter showcases their creativity and commitment to using quality ingredients. They are one of the leading hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

From the fiery Nashville Hot Chicken Sliders to the refreshing Vegetarian Caprese Sliders, their menu caters to diverse tastes, ensuring every guest finds a favorite. The Picnic Tap’s laid-back ambiance and mouthwatering dishes create a unique dining experience that invites patrons to relax, enjoy, and savor the flavors of Nashville. They have earned the rank of being one of the leading hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

5) Cafe Intermezzo

Cafe Intermezzo is one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, offering a charming European-style cafe experience. Situated in a cozy corner of the city, this family-owned and operated establishment has been delighting patrons with its warm ambiance, delectable food, and an extensive selection of coffees and desserts.

The signature food at Cafe Intermezzo is their famous “Viennese Schnitzel.” This classic Austrian dish features a tender, breaded and fried veal cutlet, served with a side of creamy potato salad and tangy lemon wedges. The Viennese Schnitzel at Cafe Intermezzo is a culinary masterpiece that transports diners to the heart of Europe with each delightful bite.

Main Menu Items:

1. Mediterranean Hummus Platter: “A delightful assortment of freshly-made hummus, accompanied by warm pita bread, marinated olives, cucumbers, and cherry tomatoes.” The Mediterranean Hummus Platter is a perfect choice for those seeking a light and flavorful appetizer, embracing the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean region.

2. Baked Spinach and Feta Pasta: “Al dente penne pasta baked with a luscious blend of spinach, feta cheese, and a touch of cream, served with garlic bread on the side.” This vegetarian delight offers a comforting and indulgent experience, capturing the essence of rich Mediterranean flavors.

3. Chocolate Truffle Torte: “A decadent chocolate lover’s dream, our Chocolate Truffle Torte features layers of rich chocolate cake, ganache, and velvety smooth truffle filling.” This dessert is a must-try for any sweet tooth, providing the perfect ending to a delightful meal at Cafe Intermezzo.

Customer Reviews:

“Cafe Intermezzo is truly one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants. The Viennese Schnitzel was outstanding – perfectly crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. It was like a little taste of Austria right here in Nashville!”

“The Mediterranean Hummus Platter was divine, and the cozy atmosphere of the cafe made it a perfect spot to relax and enjoy a leisurely meal. I can’t wait to come back and try more of their delicious dishes!”

“The Baked Spinach and Feta Pasta was a delightful surprise – the flavors were so rich and comforting. And don’t even get me started on the Chocolate Truffle Torte – it was pure chocolate heaven!”

Cafe Intermezzo is undeniably one of the top hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants, offering a delightful European-style cafe experience in the heart of the city. As a family-owned and operated establishment, it exudes warmth and charm, making diners feel right at home. The Viennese Schnitzel stands out as their signature dish, capturing the essence of Austrian cuisine. They are one of the favorite hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

With a menu featuring delectable options like the Mediterranean Hummus Platter and Baked Spinach and Feta Pasta, Cafe Intermezzo caters to diverse palates, ensuring a memorable dining experience for everyone. And to top it all off, their indulgent Chocolate Truffle Torte is a sweet delight that leaves a lasting impression. For an enchanting culinary journey in a cozy setting, Cafe Intermezzo is a must-visit restaurant that showcases the best of tucked-away dining in Nashville. They can definitely be counted among the favorite hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants.

Now you know why these are some of the great hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants just waiting for you to discover them. However, it’s important to let you know that this is not an exhaustive list of the great hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants and that this list is in no particular order.

So, the next time you find yourself here, don’t forget to venture off the beaten path and explore the hole-in-the-wall Nashville restaurants. Take a culinary journey and discover the hidden gems that make Nashville’s dining scene truly extraordinary.

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