Nashville – Part Two – The Catbird Seat

When I was attempting to snag online reservations for our little mother/daughter trip, I knew I wanted to include an interesting restaurant experience. Nashville’s The Catbird Seat, immediately came to mind. Each time I visited their website, I would ponder … why the name … The Catbird Seat?

I recall reading “The Catbird Seat” by James Thurber in college. The short story was written in 1942 with comic irony involved! His story focuses on the thoughts of a boring little man trying to first kill the woman who is disrupting his job, and then deciding to make it seem like she lost her mind. After finally sitting down in the restaurant/kitchen, I decided Thurber’s story had nothing to do with the restaurant. Instead, I prefer to think of the alternative meaning of the catbird seat as a “valuable position,” which is where each restaurant patron is located during dinner.

The Catbird Seat opened in 2011 as an upscale restaurant serving New American cuisine. The type of food reminded me of watching an episode of “Chef’s Table” on Netflix. Crazy interesting exciting food that puts lazy taste buds on notice. It was definitely not your typical family fare! Open Wednesday through Saturday, they serve a changing tasting menu in their U-shaped kitchen that seats only 22 guests. The kitchen is in the middle of the room with patrons sitting at a long U-shaped bar around the kitchen. Reservations are released 30 days in advance with a requirement to prepay food, service and taxes.

They have several beverage options which include curated alcoholic and non-alcoholic pairings. Take your pick! The beverages are not included in the prepaid price. We choose the non-alcoholic pairings. I read in a review they were creative and we didn’t want to be bobbing and weaving all the way to our Uber when the night was over!

Scan through the photos. Each one is labeled with the dish presented on pottery plates or bowls. The only blooper … our bowls were empty before we thought to capture it … was the beets infused with coffee from crema with potato and white chocolate masse, dehydrated olives and lime.

At the end of the meal, we were handed a clever menu of what we just ate as a keepsake. Thank goodness! I would never remember what to tell people what just happened! My favorite was the sunflower seed risotto, but I am not going to lie, the 30-day dry aged strip loin from Bearcreek Farm in umami crust with morel mushroom and BBQ tofu was a close second.

After the last course, vintage cookie jars were delivered around the “table” and finally the check. The couple next to us received the Big Bird jar. When they opened it there was a little note inside. Apparently, it was their anniversary and the note wished them well, along with four little cookies. Katie and I received the Felix the Cat cookie jar and our delicious cookies. Looking around the room, we noticed Ernie, Homer Simpson, Betty Boop and lots more. What a fun way to say goodbye!

Next Nashville blog installment … how about the Johnny Cash Museum (my personal favorite) and the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry?

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