My husband Michael and I recently had the SUPREME pleasure of going to the Grand Ole Opry for the Oak Ridge Boys induction.Ã?Â Can you believe they’re only now being inducted into the Grand Ole Opry? Who fell asleep at the wheel?!?!
Before I get to the reason for this post, allow me to just say this: If you ever get the chance to see the Oak Ridge Boys live, go go go GO. They put on an exceptional show with so much energy, talent, fun, and excitement that you’ll temporarily forget any other musicians exist.Ã?Â Temporarily, as in for weeks. They’re really something else and I’m not sure there will ever be another group like them.Ã?Â Again… GO!
Michael and I frequently go to shows at the Ryman and the Grand Ole Opry.Ã?Â Even when it’s a lineup of people we’ve seen several times before, we always enjoy ourselves.Ã?Â Like the Oak Ridge Boys, the Grand Ole Opry is an American treasure and, if you ask me, we should all support it and enjoy it every chance we can.
Another thing we love about going to Grand Ole Opry shows is the opportunity to eat in restaurants we don’t often get a chance to enjoy.Ã?Â On this particular trip, we went to Nashville’s Cock of the Walk Restaurant.Ã?Â I’m telling you, it’s worth the drive for this experience alone.Ã?Â I’m kind of kicking myself because normally, when I do restaurant reviews (or reviews of any type), I take several pictures. Of the restaurant, the food, and often even the tea!
However, like a kid in a candy store, all I could do at the Cock of the Walk Restaurant was sit and take it all in. Like I said, I’m kicking myselfÃ?Â for not taking pictures but I was just totally living in the moment Saturday night – something I never chastise myself for doing.
You can tell, before you even step into the restaurant, that you’re in for something special. The building, itself, is a work of art. It’s just beautiful and reminds you of a Riverboat. It instantly made me think of a beautiful riverboat we rode on when we lived in Louisville.Ã?Â When you walk inside, your struck by the rustic beauty which, again, reminds you that you’re someplace very special.
There are MANY tables and many different dining rooms (each with their own cool names), so we were taken right to our seat.Ã?Â From what I’ve read, long waits are somewhat unheard of at Cock of the Walk.Ã?Â To be honest, there are so many cool things to see, I can’t imagine having a problem with a bit of a wait.
We were approached immediately by our smiling, very friendly server and we got our drinks so fast it’s like he read our minds. Michael and I each wanted the Fried Catfish Dinner – but enough food was brought out for 4 people!Ã?Â Ã?Â I noticed something on the menu stating that if two people were sharing one meal, a small fee would be added to the bill. I thought the idea of two people sharing one meal sounded borderline crazy.
Then I saw the servings.
The people at Cock of the Walk aren’t just friendly, they’re generous with their servings – and that’s always a good thing.Ã?Â I also loved the servers’ outfits! The girls wore these incredible hats and I found myself almost glad my youngest and flashiest daughter, Stephany, wasn’t with us this time. She’d have done everything in her power to have snatched one of these great hats – feather and all.
Needless to say, no matter how gorgeous and unique a restaurant is, it’s all for naught if the food is a let down.Ã?Â Fortunately that isn’t even remotely a problem at Cock of the Walk.Ã?Â They talk the talk, but the real beauty lies in the fact that they walk the walk.Ã?Â The Cock of the Walk!
The catfish was crunchy on the outside but flaky tender on the inside.Ã?Â In a word: Perfection.Ã?Â Since we were given enough for at least 4 people, it’s a good thing it was so delicious.Ã?Â The “River Fries” were also great. Ã?Â Big, fat fries cut from real potatoes… a stark contrast from bland “frozen, straight out of the bag” fries that haunt many restaurants.
They give me nightmares.
This may seem like a trivial thing to some people, but I was thrilled to see Heinz Ketchup on the table. Some places have off brand (and often downright disgusting) ketchup. You can taste their penny-pinching ways and it’s not pretty. The ketchup and the attempts at cutting corners BOTH leave a bad taste in my mouth.
Coleslaw is another area in which I can be a total snob. Many times my husband is like, “This coleslaw isn’t bad…” and I’ll counter with, “It’s closer to bad than it is good.”Ã?Â What can I say, I’m probably the pickiest coleslaw eater in the world.Ã?Â Great coleslaw is a work of art, a thing of beauty, and about as rare as class in Hollywood.Ã?Â Ã?Â We eat at many, many restaurants and I’m afraid that I, personally, can only thing of 3 with exceptional coleslaw.
Now there are 4.
Cock of the Walk gives coleslaw a great name and theirs’ impressed the sandals off of this picky coleslaw connoisseur.Ã?Â I have never had better coleslaw. Period. It’s out of this world.
The beans are also fantastic. Very seasoned and flavorful. There was a smoky flavor that made me smile.
You’re served a little iron skillet of cornbread that’s also fantastic – a great companion for the smile-inducing beans.Ã?Â Something else that made me do a happy dance in my seat was something I’d never had before: Pickled Onions.Ã?Â Oh my gentle Lord!Ã?Â I’m not sure there are even words to describe how extraordinary these picked onions were.Ã?Â They were just outrageously delicious and it would make my heart soar if our favorite restaurants in Kentucky would start serving pickled onions as well.
As for the hush puppies, let me just say this: Remember how extraordinarily picky I told you I am with coleslaw?Ã?Â I’m just as picky with a few other things:
- onion rings
- hush puppies
Oh yeah, hush puppies are on the picky list.Ã?Â Let’s face it, bad hush puppies make you question mankind.Ã?Â Fortunately, the hush puppiesÃ?Â at Cock of the Walk are BEYOND wonderful. In fact, when I took one bite into my first hush puppy, I said, “Now that’s what I’m talking about!” Knowing how particular I am with hush puppies, my husband immediately reached for one.Ã?Â He agreed with my assessment. He’d pretty much have to – they’re just wonderful.
Excellent food, outstanding service, beautiful surroundings, and a fun atmosphere made Cock of the Walk Restaurant in Nashville an instant favorite.
If you have a trip to Nashville planned, be sure to check out the wonderful Cock of the Walk Restaurant.Ã?Â Click the link for directions, a video tour, and more information.
If you DON’T have a trip to Nashville planned, now you have a perfectly good reason to do so!
Photo Credits: I’m using pictures from the Cock of the Walk Nashville‘s website because, as I said, I couldn’t quit gawking, gushing, and gorging long enough to take my own.