Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Mason's Restaurant - Provisions with a Unique Southern Flair

Mason's Restaurant - Provisions With A Unique Southern Flair

I was recently invited to an event for the opening of a fabulous new restaurant in Nashville - Mason's Southern Provisions! Nestled inside the ever-so-chic Loew's Vanderbilt Hotel, Mason's represents southern style food with a French twist!

Everything I tasted that evening was so amazing that I could not wait to tell you all about it and, of course, show you some great pictures too :-). Not only is the food great, but the decor and ambiance is amazing! Soft, white leather chairs and couches surrounded by flat screen TV's on the Bar side and exquisite dining area on the restaurant side are ultra inviting. The designers of this restaurant thought of everything including plenty of electrical outlets near and on almost every table. Yes, I said on the tables. At the Bar and on the under-surface of the tables, there are electrical and USB outlets to charge your phones, laptops, iPads, etc!
These are some amazing menu's and I could tell that I was one of the first to hold this beauty in my hands! They are actually made with bound leather.......

Like I said......the menus are made from actual leather....Sweet!

JARS - Jars of some of the most delicious Pimento Cheese, Lima Bean Hummus and Pepper Jelly you will ever taste! Served with Olive Oil Crackers

Of course, with the name Mason's you will see many an homage to the old fashion Mason Jar here......

I'm slightly embarrassed to admit how many deviled eggs I enjoyed at this event.....YIKES! Let's just say the number is above 9 and less than 11 (Yes, they were THAT great!) I love deviled eggs to begin with, but these are topped with a Bacon Jam that I could not get enough of. They even gave us the bacon jam recipe :-)
(P.S. To my own defense they are not your typical grocery store jumbo egg....hehe)

A DEVIL OF AN EGG -  Bacon Jam, Mustard Seed Caviar

I really loved this drink called the Suga Garden (More on it in a minute......)

My friend Karesse was my tasting buddy for the evening. We had a ball!

The flavors bursting from this drink (Below) are so full and exciting. One of the best drinks I've had all year!

Suga Garden - Reyka Vodka, DeKuper Fluer Elderflower liquor, Lime Juice, Monin Lavender

Crab Corn Dogs with Mississippi Comeback Sauce - I love these because there is more crab than breading....a definite plus in my book!

So, you know how I said the Suga Garden is one of my fave cocktails this year. Well, it falls 2nd place only to this cocktail (see below) - Peculiar Lemonade! I could not get enough of this signature drink! The aromas are amazing. As soon as you bring the glass to your nose you can smell the inviting fragrance of cucumber so fresh you would think you are holding one!

Peculiar Lemonade - Hendricks Gin, Cucumber, Lemon and Simple Syrup

Suga nice I have to show it twice!

Fried Green Tomatoes - Crab, Field Peas, Feta, Smoked Pepper Aioli. Seasoned to perfection and truly a southern dish!

The Bill of Fare for the evening

Dill Pollen Chips with Beef Tartare - Pecan Romesco, Kentucky Asiago. The Asiago and Dill flavors burst through around mid-bite. How about that presentation.......cute!

Executive Chef Brandon Frohne was overcome with emotion as he welcomed all the guests to the highly anticipated opening of this great new restaurant!

My friend Karesse and I with Executive Chef Brandon Frohne - this is one talented guy! I've gotta get back to Mason's soon to talk him him one-on-one.

I still can't get enough of these great menus :-)

I really loved this dish below! It certainly does not look like your "normal" and expected fried chicken and when it first came out, I thought the waiters brought the wrong dish! However, the chicken is very tender and flavorful - great because I don't typically order chicken at restaurants (it's usually too dry for my liking). The collards were perfectly seasoned and were even better when we drizzled some of the Mason's Hot Sauce over them :-)

Fried Chicken Galantine  - Turnip Puree, Bourbon Mustard Jus, Spicy Collards.

Do you know what's coming next????

Shrimp & Grits -  Another great dish. It has a little kick to it because of the Anduille sausage so for the other heat wimps out there like me, you will probably end up eating around the sausage. However, everything is flavorful especially the shrimp which taste like they were just plucked from the ocean that morning!

Mason's Hot Sauce - This hot sauce is actually made in-house and is aged in a barrel for 3  whole months!  I was pleasantly surprised that even though it has a great smoky flavor, it was not so hot that I couldn't tolerate it.

Blueberry Crumb Cake - This is accompanied by Cheesecake Ice Cream (Sorry about letting the delicious ice cream melt before I shot this photo. I think I was indulging in something else when it was first brought to the table...). The blueberry flavor is fresh and very much present in this cake :-)

Dark Chocolate Cremeux - very soft and light physically, but has a rich, creamy flavor

This is the private dining room complete with full A/V (audio/visual) set up for your next group meeting, bridal shower, birthday dinner, etc.

How beautiful is this space?!? This is one one of the circular booths with amazing lighting descending from the ceiling.

Mason jar mural on the wall - awesome!

Doesn't this look ultra cozy and inviting?!?

Make sure you go by and visit one of the HOTTEST new restaurants in Nashville! I'm sure they would love to have you!

BREAKFAST: 6:30a to 11a
LUNCH.: 11a to 3p
DINNER.: 5p to 10p
Brunch Served on Sundays

2100 West End Avenue (inside Loew's Vanderbilt Hotel)
Nashville, TN

--Dr. April

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Hard Rock Cafe Nashville - Rollin' out new burgers!

Hard Rock Cafe Nashville is Rollin' out new burgers!

The Hard Rock Cafe in Nashville, TN is rolling out some new burgers for summer and guess who got to be one of the taste testers for the new line-up?!?!?!? You guessed it.....ME!!! A couple of good friends and I hunkered down at a table in the awesome event space upstairs at the Hard Rock and literally tried ALL 12 Burgers!

S. O. B. Burger - Basted with spicy Chipotle Pepper puree and topped with Montery Jack Cheese. Served on a buttered - toasted bun with Hard Rock Guacamole & Grilled Onions

Legendary Chicken - Perfectly Grilled 1/2 lb. chicken breast on a toasted bun. This was my absolute favorite out of all the sandwiches!! I'm typically not a fan of chicken breast because it ca be a tad dry but this was anything but dry.....

Red, White, & Blue Burger - Laced and grilled with spicy Buffalo sauce and Cajun seasoning, then topped with crumbled blue cheese and a crisp fried onion ring.

Hickory BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger - Basted with special Hickory BBQ sauce and smothered with caramelized onions. Topped with crisp seasoned bacon and melted Cheddar Cheese

Mushroom & Swiss Burger - Smothered with sauteed mushrooms and topped with two slices of Swiss Cheese

Oh, how I LOVE Mushrooms!!!!

Veggie Leggie - Grilled Veggie Leggie patty topped with a Grilled Portabella Mushroom, zuchinni, yellow squash and roasted red pepper. Served on a toasted bun with lemon mayo, leaf lettuce, sliced tomato and grilled sweet onions.

The Big Cheese - Topped with three thick slices of your choice of cheeses. Choose from American, Monterey Jack, Cheddar or Swiss

Turkey Burger - Grilled turkey patty served on a toasted bun with jerk mayo, leaf lettuce, tomato slice and red onion rings. Topped with pepper jack cheese and fresh avocado slices.

Legendary 10 oz Burger - Topped with a seasoned bacon, two slices of Cheddar cheese, a crisp friend onion ring, lettuce, tomato and day pickles

Look at all those burgers lined up and ready for us to devour!

The California Burger - a toasted bun brushed with Ranch dressing, fresh cucumber slices, lettuce, tomato, fresh made Hard Rock Guacamole and topped with Monterey Jack Cheese

Look at those gorgeous onions!

The Local Burger with Short Rib - This burger is crafted from a combination of ground beef and short rib and gives a surprisingly smooth texture to the burger and a great smoky flavor!

Tada.........Here it is, The Elvis Burger!!

If you didn't know, Elvis Presley's favorite sandwich was a peanut butter and banana sandwich. So 1/2 of my Burger Grubbing crew this evening loved this Burger ( ME included!!!) I loved it! The savoriness of the burger was contrasted with the mild sweetness of the caramelized bananas and peanut butter and the saltiness of the bacon- PERFECTION!

The Burger Grubbing gang

Hard Rock currently has a promotion going for a chance to win a BEACH Getaway! All you have to do is snap a picture of yourself biting into their Legendary Burger and upload it to Instagram and/or Twitter using the hashtag #HARDROCKBURGER ! How easy is that!?!?!??!
I have yet to hear back on whether or not I have won the beach getaway....Lord knows I can use one LOL!

More pics from the Hard Rock Cafe.........

Hank Williams' Nudie Suit

Hard Rock Cafe Nashville

Sun - Thur 11:00AM - 11:00PM
Fri - Sat 11:00AM - 12:00AM

100 Broadway
Nashville, TN 37201
Corner of 2nd Avenue  & Broadway

--Dr April