The Shil-Shul Diaries

The story begins in a cramped booth at the "faux" New York deli 'Noshville' in Nashville TN on a blustry day after thanksgiving November Friday day in 2008. In between my wife, Rachel, and my brother, Michael, I sat across from my "cooler than me" cousins Mark and Sarah, and Sarah's just as cool husband, Danny. Mark, who lives the awesome life being a lawyer living in San Francisco working for Facebook, with his only downfall being his SEVERE lactardation..which has never been medically or scientifically proven to exist in Mark.. Sarah and Danny are foodies from NYC who have tried every dive "chicken finger" hut and "curry on a stick" in the big city. Danny and Sarah had discussed that they were trying to go to as many places from Bobby Flay's 'Throwdown' show as they could, and that there was one in Nashville we had to try.....a place that I had never heard of in my 13 years of living there..I will get to that adventure later.

I got an idea from my cool cousins idea. An idea became a hobby. And the hobby became an obsession. And thus produced the list.....a world-famous spreadsheet...of every restaurant that has ever been featured on Food Network and Travel Channel....every restaurant from the famous shows like "Throwdown", "Man V. Food", "Man v. Food Nation", "Food Feuds", "Food Wars", "Best Thing I Ever Ate", and "Diners Drive-Ins and Dives" to the obscure "Best Food Ever", "Meat and Potatoes", and "101 Best Places to Chowdown", plus my additions of the restaurants of famous chefs and local places of legend. Names, cities, food they are famous for, and addresses. It was and still is an obsession. As of 9:24am on January 7th, 2015, THE LIST HAS 3,116 RESTAURANTS ON IT...WITH A FEW OVERLAPS HERE AND THERE. And then over Pastrami Eggs Benedict at Nate N' Al's Deli in Beverly Hills, Hannah and Andrew, our good friends, gave me the idea of the blog. Document every place I went. And thus, "The Shil-Shul Diaries" was born. I will log the places, the shows they are from, and what I had. So far, every place I have been has been amazing, except two, one being mediocre, and another being down right awful.

If there is a city you have been to, or are going to, or are from and want to know what from my list is in the city, send me a email at shilshuldiaries@gmail.com

Monday, January 4, 2016

Best Southern Food (aka Meat and Three) in Nashville


ARNOLDS
605 8th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203







"Here's the deal Arnolds is the best there is. Plain and simple. The open in the morning and  piss excellence."-Ricky Bobby

When it comes to culinary experiences, Nashville is quickly becoming a cannot miss stop for gastronomic greatness.  In a city of James Beard award winners and new talent from NYC, LA, and Chicago coming to get in on the boom known as Nashville.  In a city of foams, amuse bouches, and pre-fixe menus, one restaurant stands alone as the best in Nashville, and it is a cafeteria near downtown with no windows, long tables, and even longer lines...and its only open for lunch,. Arnold's Country Kitchen is the best southern food in Nashville and the best restaurant in the city according to me and many nationally acclaimed magazines.

In Nashville, we do whats called the meat and three. I will let Wikipedia explain without paying the $3 donation.

"A meat and three restaurant is a restaurant in which the customer picks one meat from a daily selection of 3–6 choices (such as fried chicken, country ham, beef, country-fried steak, meatloaf, or pork chop and three side dishes from a list that may include up to a dozen other options (usually vegetables, potatoes, corn, green or lima beans,but also other selections such as gelatin, creamed corn, macaroni and cheese, and spaghetti).

A meat-and-three meal is often served with cornbread and sweet tea.[Meat and three is popular throughout the country, but its roots can be traced to Tennessee and its capital of Nashville.The phrase has been described as implying "glorious vittles served with utmost informality." It is also associated with soul food.[3]

The article goes on to say: 
Meat and three has been mentioned in connection with the increasing incidence of diabetes in the Southern population, with one expert saying:
"There's a real misconception in the South about what constitutes a healthy diet. People aren't lining up at the salad bar during lunch hour; they're opting for the 'meat and three and sweet tea' at the corner cafeteria. And that's not good; those cafeteria vegetables aren't really healthy when they're cooked with half a ham hock and butter.

Sounds like a gastronomic journey of greatness to me!

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