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If you have lived in Nashville for any length of time, chances are good that when you arrive at Lockeland Table, you’ll see someone you know. If you live on the East Side—which adds another locally-owned restaurant to its stuffed dining portfolio with the August opening of this gem—you’ll run into the folks you chat with on the sidewalks, in the park with their kids and dogs or biking through Shelby Bottoms. West Siders who cross the Cumberland might spot their attorney, physician, pastor or yoga instructor. If you have enjoyed a cocktail at F. Scott’s in the past decade you will be happy to see Liz Endicott behind the bar, running the beverage program here.
And if you’ve dined at Eastland Café since Yvette and Willy Thomas first opened it, you will certainly recognize the two most familiar faces at Lockeland Table—GM Cara Graham, her mega-watt smile lighting the way inside, and executive chef Hal Holden-Bache, flying about in the open kitchen at the rear of their 88-seat restaurant. The partners held the same posts at Eastland, which is where they met and discovered they had a highly-functional and productive working relationship. “We fight well together!” Graham says with a laugh.
So when—after many late night soul-searching discussions—they came to the mutual conclusion that the next step in their lives was a restaurant of their own, they decided to merge their skills and take the leap as a team. The result is the transformation of a shabby, non-descript building that anchored the corner of 16th and Woodland into an artful, eye-catching building that is a new anchor of the historic and burgeoning Lockeland Springs neighborhood. In a nod to the previous tenants of the building, the new owners preserved their hand-painted mural on the 16th St. side of the building—Unisex Boutique Coiffures and Tanning—and even held on to their phone number.
Happy Hour at the bar is so popular that the spillover assembles on the small patio to the right of the front door. The thoughtfully-priced adult-beverages are teamed with an irresistible line-up of $6 snacks. A quartet of deviled egg halves each gets its own bold topping; a pile of green picoline olives is encircled by ring of bright red boursin-stuffed peppedew peppers; the empanada of the day is kicked up by Holden-Bache’s classic chimichurri; and on the night we visited, we devoured the crispy pig ear sliders with hot slaw and garden radish in a flash.
The dinner menu, Holden-Bache says, “is kind of my version of a Greatest Hits album. I’ve been collecting recipes and dishes for years. Some things go way back, and some things are new. I want everyone to be able to enjoy my food, it’s honest and it’s pretty simple.”
1520 Woodland Street
Nashville, TN 37206
Chicken liver pate in a jar
Sofrito glazed baby back ribs; skillet cornbread with honey butter
The Pig pizza
Steak and frittes
Niman Ranch bone-in pork loin
Carolina Mountain trout with maple bourbon glaze
Sweet ricotta doughnuts
The Dragonfly (Uncle Val's gin, hibiscus tea, grapefruit juice, basil lemon, soda and cucumber garnish)
The Beehive (Blueberry vodka, fresh lemon, simple syrup, lavender bitters)
Draft beer including Jackalope and Yazoo
Sparking, white and red wine from America, Europe, Australia and South Africa (by the glass and bottle)
Baby greens salad with goat cheese ($7.50)
Cheese platter—pick 3 for $13, 5 for $22)
Margherita pizza ($10)
Spaghetti and housemade meatballs ($18)
Grilled NY strip ($24)
Chocolate pot de crème ($8)
Monday-Thursday: 4-6:30 p.m.
Friday-Saturday: 4-6 p.m.
Cocktail, wine and beer specials, separate menu of Happy Hour snacks ($6 each)
On fenced front and side patio
Monday-Saturday 4-10 p.m.; dining room begins service at 5 p.m.
Street parkign and accessible lot on 16th Street