Nashville’s Butcher and Bee
photo from Butcher & Bee Facebook page
First, let me start by mentioning that my friend Lesley has a great post over on Nashville Scene’s Bites blog (First Bite: Butcher & Bee) that you should also take the time to read – even the comments! I know, I know. These days you’re usually warned to NOT read the comments or else you’ll lose all faith in humanity, but not in this case. These comments could actually aid you in ordering!
YOU GOTTA BURRATA at Butcher & Bee, Nashville
Blood orange, peanut granola, grapefruit, sesame vin
Now, to tell you about my experiences! I’ve eaten at Butcher and Bee five times in five weeks (it has been open about 7 weeks) and I’m heading there again for dinner later this week. I think you could say I like it.
I’ve tried over a dozen dishes from the menu at this point, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed almost every single thing I’ve eaten. Of course, there are a few dishes that I’ve repeated ordering on each visit, and some that I’ve ordered two of in one sitting. (Hello kale salad, fire roasted carrots and blistered leeks!) Surprisingly, almost everything has been vegetarian! You know I’m a meat eater, but I do greatly appreciate vegetables done right, and Butcher & Bee is doing just that.
KALE SLAW FTW
Peanuts, benne, soy
photo from Butcher & Bee Nashville Instagram
They also have their menu set up in just the way I like to eat… small plates to share. I always go for the 4 Mezzes to start for $16, then add larger plates until I can’t eat any more. If there are 4 of you dining, you’re probably going to want to order several more things from other sections of the menu. If there are only two of you, you could probably get away with ordering just a couple more items from the “fun stuff” category. There is a “sandwiches” section too, but I can’t really speak to those since I’ve only tried one and can’t say that I would recommend.
You know I’m not one to talk much about things I don’t like, but I guess I’ll put this out there and then you can make your own choices. Apparently the Pulled Squash Sandwich was named one of the best sandwiches in the country, so some really important people must like it. Not me. That said, two of my dining partners on that particular evening did enjoy it. But, like me, they didn’t really understand why it’s called “pulled squash” since the butternut squash was just sliced thin and piled on bread, and didn’t really resemble the taste or texture of bbq at all. (Which we thought was supposed to be the point, but maybe it wasn’t??)
LET’S START WITH A SOUP
Roasted butternut squash soup, parmesan, bay leaf milk
photo from Butcher & Bee Nashville Instagram
On the other hand, there is another preparation of butternut squash on the menu that BLEW ME AWAY. “Let’s Start with a Soup” is not even really what I consider soup, but that doesn’t matter in the least. This butternut squash “soup” was more like a bruleed custard and paired with the Parmesan, it had this really interesting savory sweet thing happening.
I’ve only had it once, and we split it four ways that night. While I absolutely loved it, I’m not sure I could eat an entire bowl of it by myself because it’s pretty rich, but I will certainly be happy sharing it with others time and time again!
Sweet potatoes, red wine vinegar glaze, pickled chilies
I guess I should mention that the menu is constantly changing, so while I highly recommend all of these dishes I’m mentioning and/or picturing, you might not be able to get them all. Sorry! Just key an eye an out and maybe they’ll bring some back if they aren’t on there when you go.
Brussels + fish sauce ain’t nothing to F with
Pretty sure you don’t have to worry about the brussels sprouts going anywhere there, because I think half this town is addicted to them. I’ll be honest in that I wasn’t completely blown away by them my first time, but I think there are a couple of good reasons for that. 1) Too much hype. I’d seen a bazillion Instagram posts and Tweets about them, so I thought they were going to turn my world upside down. 2) No one explained the proper technique for eating these brussels sprouts and apparently that’s very important.
Thankfully, even though my world wasn’t rocked by them on my first visit, I ordered them again on my next visit and this time an in-the-know friend was with me to share a tip — stir those babies up to get all the good sauce that’s on the bottom! Um, wow. HUGE difference! They really are really awesome, and maybe my world didn’t flip upside down, but it did go a little sideways.
FIRE ROASTED CARROTS at Butcher & Bee Nashville
There’s one thing absent from this post that you’d typically see me covering– can you guess what it is?
Cocktails! One of my New Year’s resolutions was to give up alcohol for the month of January, and since all of my visits to Butcher & Bee thus far took place in January, well, I haven’t yet had a chance to sample their drinks. But don’t you worry, now that it’s February, I’ll get on that right away. In the meantime, if you have recommendations, feel free to send them my way!
Butcher & Bee Nashville
902 Main Street
Nashville, TN 37206
Lunch 11 am – 2 pm Mon – Fri
Dinner 5 pm – midnight Every Day
Extended Hours midnight – 2 am Fri and Sat