Americano Freestyle Tapas
Get ready, because you’re going to be reading a lot about tapas here on the blog in the coming weeks since I just got back from Barcelona where I ate sooooo much amazing food!
BUT – before I get to my Spanish adventure, I need to catch up on things that have been happening here in Nashville recently.
A few months back Americano Freestyle Tapas opened in the old West End Cafe location on West End. I’ve always been a fan of restaurant concepts that involve the sharing of lots of small bites, so I was pretty excited to hear about this place.
I’ve mentioned it a million times before, but it’s worth mentioning again — I like trying multiple things when I dine and would rather order 5 appetizers than one big entree. That way I get a few nibbles of a variety of different flavors instead of being stuck with just one thing. Of course, I could always just dine with 5 people and force them to share their entrees with me…but for some reason, some people don’t like that. ;-)
Americano’s Crispy Brussel Sprouts – smoked pork belly/chipotle glaze/manchego cheese
That’s why I love spots that create menus that are meant for sharing. At Americano, you’ll find bites, small plates, salads, tapas, tacos and larger shared plates. Don’t expect all traditional Spanish dishes though, as many of their offerings are Latin-influenced but with a nod to Nashville, and I’m perfectly okay with that.
I’ve had the pleasure of dining at Americano twice now, most recently as an official outing for the Nashville Food Bloggers, which gave me a chance to try what I believe to be the best brussels sprouts in town for a second time. And it was confirmed – yep, these are the best brussels sprouts in town! With a sweet chipotle glaze and chunks of smoked pork belly tossed in, how could they not be?
Another thing I love about this menu is that you can be as good or bad as you want to be. There is everything from Chopped Kale Salad to Fried Manchego Cheese. So go with the lighter side of things when feeling healthy and the darker side when you’re feeling stressed. Options!
Albondigas – veal pork meatballs with sweet piquito pepper sauce
Chopped Kale with Citrus Honey Vinaigrette, Salted Almonds, Raisins, Grated Manchego
Fried Manchego Cheese with Blueberry Jalapeno Jam
Nashville hot cauliflower served with buttermilk blue cheese sauce
From left: Blistered Baby Heirloom Tomatoes, Ceviche (special), Brussels Sprouts
In addition to the dishes not pictured here, I’ve also had the Patatas Bravas, Spicy Ahi Tuna Guacamole, the Paella Americano, and a ceviche special they had one day for lunch. I can’t say that I’ve had a single bad thing on my two visits.
There is still a good chunk of the menu that I haven’t yet sampled. I’ve currently got my eye on the Roasted Dates with smoked pork belly and blue cheese (can you tell I have a thing for pork belly?) and the Gambas Ajillo (hot garlic shrimp). I think a happy hour may be on the calendar soon….
Americano’s blood orange swirl
Speaking of happy hour, theirs is Sunday through Thursday from 3 pm – 6 pm, and you can get these drink specials:
$5 Margaritas (rocks or frozen)
$5 Frozen Swirl any flavor (I love the blood orange!)
$5 Sangria (white or red)
$3 All Drafts Beers
In addition to lunch and dinner seven days a week, Americano also offers brunch every Saturday and Sunday at 9 a.m. I haven’t had the chance to go for brunch yet, but their menu looks great, so it’s on my short list.
1720 West End Ave #100
Nashville, TN 37203
Follow on Twitter @AmcanoNashville
Mon – Thurs 11 am – 10 pm
Fri 11 am – 11 pm
Sat 9 am-11 pm
Sun 9 am-10 pm
Tip: There is plenty of free parking behind the restaurant. The signs in the lot still say for West End Cafe customers (or at least they did when I was there last) but never fear, they’re for Americano!