A Weekend in Music City!

Hey y’all! I’m so excited to tell you about our recent trip to Nashville, Tennessee. Our travel posse consisted of the Strictly Business ladies—Hannah, Paige, and Devyn—and our good friend Ashley. For most of us, it was the first time really taking in Music City. Nashville is full of so much history, art, and energy. From the second our plane landed, we were immersed in live music and that dream-big bustling.

OMNI Nashville + Kitchen Notes

Getting a hotel in Downtown Nashville is definitely the way to go. Not only are you steps away from all the action, the hotel itself is a destination! For the first half of our trip, we stayed at the amazing OMNI Nashville (omnihotels.com/hotels/nashville). If you want to really elevate your Nashville experience, the OMNI is 27 stories of charm and elegance. The grand lobby has alluring places to sit and chat, or cozy up by a fire. In our room, we loved being able to look out over all the lights and movement on Broadway Street from the window. We appreciated the many mirrors in the room, including a lighted makeup mirror in the bathroom. This made it easier for us four ladies to get ready at the same time. Another desired amenity the OMNI offers is plush robes for its guests. We sported our robes up to the hotel’s heated rooftop pool for an afternoon of relaxation! The pool area was very impressive. It has a whirlpool, a lounge deck, cabanas, and a seasonal rooftop bar and grill. At the OMNI, you’ll also find state-of-the-art fitness equipment and a spa with massage and body and facial treatments available to help you truly feel like royalty during your getaway.

Photo Courtesy of OMNI Nashville

The gem of OMNI Nashville is Kitchen Notes (kitchennotesnashville.com), a lovely farm-to-fork restaurant accessed through the hotel lobby that will steal your heart! The decor is light with colorful rustic accents—very farmhouse. We were seated by a wall with large windows so we could get some good people-watching in while we brunched. Kitchen Notes has an amazing Weekend Brunch menu. Everything we tasted was delicious. And get this…the chef is from Nebraska!!! We got to meet Chef Jon Welch and talk to him about his inspiration for the menu and the vibes at Kitchen Notes. It’s his goal to invoke an emotional response that will make each guest feel like they’re as comfortable as they would be at home eating a family recipe that has been made with care. We had already put in our orders, but Chef Jon surprised us with one more item from the menu—Grandma’s Chicken & Dumplings—which ended up being all of our favorite! I mean…oh my goodness. It was the best chicken and dumplings we’ve ever had! Chef Jon got the recipe from his great grandmother, and he makes the dumplings by hand every day. It is so naturally flavorful. We couldn’t get enough. We had similar feelings about the other food we ate at Kitchen Notes. If you’re looking for something light but still has that wow factor, the Yogurt Parfait is perfectly designed. It has quality Greek yogurt, locally-made honey, seasonal berries, and granola with an absolutely mouthwatering peach puree. “Yummms” all around! The Biscuits & Gravy at Kitchen Notes takes this classic combo to another level. The presentation alone is enough to widen your eyes with awe. The black pepper sausage gravy is house-crafted to perfection and the house buttermilk biscuits bring it all together with their toasted, doughy goodness. Kitchen Notes is actually well-known for their biscuits, which the restaurant serves to each table to start off their breakfast. It’s such a nice touch to the whole dining experience! Before COVID, they had a whole Biscuit Bar set up for guests to help themselves to a variety of biscuit flavors and fixings. Now, your friendly waiter or waitress will bring you a plate of freshly made biscuits to choose from. We were given the classic Buttermilk, sweet Strawberry, and savory Garlic & Butter biscuits—all were delicious and the variety is much appreciated. Another item we raved about was the Steak & Eggs Benedict. The smoked prime rib was tender and seasoned well. This is a hard dish to master but Kitchen Notes knows what they’re doing. Paige really liked the Chicken & Waffle—a Nashville staple. You can order your fried chicken Nashville Hot or regular and flavor it up how you like with the whipped butter, pure maple syrup, and berry and basil compote served on the side. Hannah is a big fan of Avocado Toast, so she usually orders it everywhere she goes. It did not disappoint! Hannah loved that the mashed up avocado is served on multi-grain bread with a sunny-side-up egg (which is how it should always be, in her opinion) and fresh greens and tomatoes. Kitchen Notes has many more Southern-inspired dishes on their breakfast and lunch menus—it’s hard imagine anything coming out of the kitchen would fall short of the quality we experienced during our brunch. Cheers *raises mimosa glass* to Kitchen Notes in the OMNI!

Black Rabbit

When you visit Nashville, there are so many options for entertainment and nightlife. It’s hard to narrow down the list, so let us help you with a couple recommendations! If you want to get wild and dance on stages, go to Broadway Street. If you want to sip on a hand-crafted cocktail or nibble on innovative fare in a sophisticated, laid-back environment, go to Black Rabbit (blackrabbittn.com) in the historic Printers Alley neighborhood. Black Rabbit has that hole-in-the-wall characteristic. You feel special that you stumbled upon it—like you’re in on a secret that not many people know. The cozy brick building where Black Rabbit resides dates back to the 1890s. In the evenings, you’ll be greeted by live music when you walk in. There are a variety of seating options, including couches by a fire, high-top tables, and booths and bar seating the further back you go. There is even a spacious outdoor area if you want to take in some fresh air or enjoy a cigar from Black Rabbit’s humidor inside. We noted that you could have a totally different experience at this place just depending on where you sit. Our group was seated up towards the front near the band, which was fun to feel like we were getting a private show and the vibes were great. We really enjoyed the cocktails at Black Rabbit. As their website states, the prohibition theme runs strong through their robust cocktail menu—and the names are pretty funny too! (Note: Black Rabbit has a rotating menu, so not all of these drinks will be featured during your visit.) One of the cocktails that stood out to us was the Go Smoke Yourself. This is a good drink for the tequila lover who’s looking for a versatile combination with a nice smoky essence. Devyn was in the market for something sweet, so she ordered the Just Call Me Karen. Served in a martini glass, this drink features pickers vodka, kahlua, cream, espresso, and nutmeg. Our favorite BY FAR was The Hughie. It was just so good…we all wanted to order another round of it for ourselves. It features Four Roses bourbon, spiced pear, ginger, and lemon. Paige doesn’t even really like bourbon but she loved this drink. It definitely has a winter-time spirit but we’d sip on this any evening, all year round. If we weren’t memorized enough by the cocktail menu, the small plates we ordered to share were impressive as well. We decided to dive right in and order the Rabbit Rolls. We were not expecting to like these as much as we did! I think for most of us, it was our first time eating rabbit meat and there was a little hesitation, but when in Rome! We’d go back and definitely order these again. The pork/rabbit meat is served on Hawaiian rolls (the best) with swiss, dijon, poppyseed, and onion. We also shared the Cheese and Meat tray, which stood out thanks to the house-made apple butter, quality cheese and meat, and the thinly sliced crostini. If you like Brussel Sprouts, you’ll be impressed with Black Rabbit’s adaptation. The bacon, garlic, and balsamic result in a stand-out balanced flavor and they are easy to eat—they kind of melt in your mouth. Paige, an admitted beet lover, was captivated by the Beet Salad. So unique! I think it was the sweetness from the vinaigrette and honey. This is also one of Black Rabbit’s many quality gluten free options. Finally, the last recommendation we have is to ball out and get the Ribeye. Especially if you like your steak cooked on the rare side, your eyes will roll back in your head when you take the first bite. It’s seasoned and charred so perfectly on the outside, and the confit  potato with carrot and mustard seed chimichurri is just poetic together. If you want to go to Black Rabbit when you’re in Nashville, check out their event calendar online to see what’s going on that night and make a reservation. A big shout out to the general manager, Tommy Hartzog, for taking care of our group so well and opening our eyes to this hidden treasure in Nashville.

L27 Rooftop Lounge

WOW! I don’t think I even have the words to accurately describe how stellar L27 Rooftop Lounge (l27nashville.com) is. Located on the top floor/roof of The Westin Nashville hotel, L27 is a total dream. From the assortment of furniture and design elements that somehow work so perfectly together, to the breathtaking views 27 stories up overlooking the downtown cityscape, this is where you want to be. It’s very hip and classy. There are a variety of different nooks inside for small groups to sit and sip together. Large glass sliding walls open up to the outdoor patio where you’ll find cabanas, lounge chairs, and couches. The focal point is definitely the clear blue pool that basically hangs off the edge of the building with a grand arch towering above. It is very picture perfect! In addition to the whole ~vibey~ vibe of the lounge, what we really appreciated was the menu. At L27, they care more about quality than quantity. There are only eight food choices and two dessert selections, but each one is top notch. Same with the cocktail menu, but there is still an amazing variety, plus there is wine, beer, and other liquors to choose from. And even though the atmosphere is boujee, the prices are very reasonable. For nibbles, we recommend the Garlic Shrimp. Holy moly! Just imagine the combination of the shrimp with tomato, olive oil, lemon, and smoked paprika with a perfectly toasted baguette. Are you drooling yet? The Chips & Guac were also unique with the use of toasted pepitas and tajin. There are two salads—the Quinoa & Arugula and Ceasar—and both will knock your socks off.  You have the choice of adding salmon, chicken, or shrimp to these. Paige really liked the Chimichurri Wings with grated parmesan, as well! The desserts tasted as good as they look—very remarkable presentations all around. Now onto the drinks. There really isn’t any cocktail we tried that we wouldn’t recommend. I mean, we just kept going on and on about how good everything was. I think the Lunar Eclipse was voted our favorite. It is masterly crafted with Tromba Blanco tequila, cinnamon syrup, triple sec, blood orange juice, and lime juice. Hannah loved the Spice Up Your Life because the spiced hibiscus just has such a good natural, earthy flavor. Devyn was on her sweet kick again and ordered the Coffee Break, which comprises Ketel One, Frangelico, and Baileys. Another stand-out was the Pear Pressure. It’s a light drink but still makes a big impact. We absolutely recommend L27 Rooftop Lounge to everyone who travels to Nashville. You don’t have to stay at the Westin to enjoy it, but definitely make reservations ahead of time! There are also events throughout the summer to check out. We want to extend a warm thank you to our lovely waitress, Reanna Young. She was so welcoming and helpful when we had questions.

Grand Hyatt Nashville

For the last part of our trip, we lodged at the Grand Hyatt Nashville (hyatt.com/en-US/hotel/tennessee/grand-hyatt-nashville/bnarn)—the epitome of luxury and grandeur. If I could use one word to describe the Grand Hyatt, it would be “amenities”. This hotel has thought of everything to make sure your experience under their roof (or on top of it) is absolutely smooth and enjoyable. The hotel has one of the highest outdoor rooftop bars in Music City, a spa, and seven food and beverage concepts. You’re guaranteed to get a good night’s rest in one of the hotel’s 591 rooms. We stayed in one of the Executive Suites which was so spacious. It has a nice living room area, kitchen/dining nook, and separate bedroom with a king bed. The beds are so comfortable and there is ample closet/drawer space if you’re staying for a couple of nights. The bathroom was beautiful and well lit. Our group really appreciated the wet bar area which has a Nespresso machine! Hyatt isn’t cutting costs anywhere. They want the best of the best for their guests. Other thoughtful amenities include blackout curtains, 55” flat-screen TV, and BALMAIN® bath products. We totally fell in love with the rooftop bar, lou/na. It’s a must-see while you’re in Nashville. According to the website, the space is inspired by legendary Louisville & Nashville rail lines that passed directly through the site of the Grand Hyatt for over a century. lou/na’s spelling and pronunciation also evoke the Latin word for “moon”, and you will feel like the moon is within reach from this stunning rooftop venue that features indoor and outdoor seating. There is also live music every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evening. Also, the rooftop pool area of the hotel is stunning! There are so many lounge chairs, cabanas, and couches for relaxing. You could spend the whole day in this area, ordering food and drinks and taking in the views.

If you’re going to stay at the Grand Hyatt, we recommend getting access to the Grand Club Lounge during your stay. Grand Club is exclusive to select World of Hyatt tiers and guests who reserve Club Level rooms and full price suites. It is totally worth it! They have amazing breakfast in the morning, light snacks and beverages throughout the day, and appetizers and complimentary alcoholic beverages from 5 to 7 p.m. The appetizers were very high-scale. We’re talking bacon-wrapped shrimp, steak skewers, gourmet potato salad cups, and much more. Even the breakfast is spectacular. They serve your typical hot breakfast items, but also have more sophisticated items such as salmon and caviar and  chia seed pudding. The Grand Club is how you make the most out of your travels! In the Nashville property, the club is located on the Lobby Level adjacent to Hummingbird Coffee Market and Aurum. The spacious lounge features a variety of open seating options, a private conference room, and an outdoor terrace.