Musings on memorable dining experiences in Nashville
Hungry for Nashville
I can almost smell and feel the steam coming off my lemon artichoke soup — one of Midtown Café’s specialties. At my first Midtown Café experience my dining companions said “You have to have it. Everyone who eats here has to try it.” So I added that to my order that first time, and forever more began my meal with this luscious creamy soup— not too heavy with the flavors of lemon and artichoke mingling like the ingredients of a fine wine.
At Midtown I struggle with my entrée choices— they have all been superb but I favor veal or fish, but which veal and which fish? Perhaps the chef knew that others had this inner turmoil and simplified the veal choice by offering Veal “3” Ways — allowing one to have their piccata, their oscar and their saltimbocca style too. Before I settle on veal, it is imperative to ponder the fish offerings. Salmon, tuna, flounder, scallops, ah, the trout— the trout pecan crusted and served with cinnamon basil whipped potatoes (a potato dish I still try to replicate with no success) or the Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes. Choosing is hard, but you can hardly go wrong. Each dish is as exceptional in its taste as in its presentation.
And as for endings: well, at the Midtown Café, you don’t save room for dessert; you make room for the dessert whether it is the molten chocolate (a soufflé-like heavenly dish), a dessert made with seasonal fruits, or a sorbet.
by Deb Sommer
August 4, 2007
Deb is a long-time friend and contributor to BlueShoe Nashville. She is currently residing in Metropolis, Illinois, but misses Nashville (and we dearly miss her). When asked to help proof the new BlueShoe Dining Guide, she called to say that it was a poignant moment when she opened the online menu to Midtown Café and revisited her memories of the splendid meals she had enjoyed there. Like Proust's lemon madelines, the recollection of the lemon artichoke soup "took her back." Reading the menu also made her hungry, hence the title for her little essay. Thank you, Deb, for sharing your fine memories of dining in Nashville. Hurry back: there'll be prickly pear margaritas and grilled artichokes waiting for you.