Rustic, Elegant and Beautiful are just a few words that describe City Winery in Nashville.
To start City Winery offers $6 Valet parking, which is a great price and convenient compared to parking in a random lot downtown. Hours of operations are typically from 5 pm to 10 pm but if the band plays longer they will close after the band is finished. From what I observed those hours are more for the dining room and bar areas. My wife and I showed up a few minutes after 5 pm to explore the building, sample a small plate (appetizer) and have a glass of wine. Which I recommend doing before going into the Concert Dining Room.
After being greeted by the hostess, she sat us in the front Barrel Room Wine Bar and Restaurant. This an intimate setting with a real wood fireplace and rustic/beautiful wood work. They offer a full menu and bar with only top notch food and adult beverage choices.
We started with a small plate of six “Arancini Risotto Balls”, which was plenty for an appetizer. My wife enjoyed a glass of pinto gris and I had a German beer Radeberger Pilsner. Our waitress was very knowledgeable about the wine and made great food recommendations for the night. She even allowed my wife to sample a few different wines.
This is a impressive chalk board drawing of City Winery’s on tap wine list and top shelf liquors.
Before paying our bill in the Barrel Room, we decided to purchase a glass flask of wine. A unique touch on serving their on tap wine. So after that we finished with our small plate, paid our bill and took our adult beverages to the Concert Dining Room.
To keep with the wine theme all of their tables in the Concert Dining Room were numbered with wine bottles. The process of getting seated was super easy, we just gave our names and they took us to our table/seats. When you purchase a ticket, you are assigned a seat and there is no general admission. So you can come at anytime and never lose your seat. I feel this is very convenient for the average working adult. Once seated there is a waitress assigned to your table and they are available during the whole concert.
This was the view from our seats. As we were exploring the Concert Dining Room, there wasn’t a bad seat in the house. City Winery offered a raised seating section right behind our table and second floor seating. Did not feel cramped or too close to anyone else… we had plenty of “elbow room” plus even room for wheelchair access.
As we finished our dinner and started to watch the show. Sound quality was great and not too loud. It was really a perfect volume for that venue. NOTE: City Winery does encourage concert goers respect everyone around them by keeping your cellphone volumes down and the talking to a minimum while the band is playing. The opening act was Jonathan Kingham and the headliner was Toad the Wet Sprocket. Jonathan Kingham is based in Nashville, and splits his time between touring, writing, recording, producing and conducting songwriting residencies. Jonathan is also currently playing keyboard and guitar for Toad the Wet Sprocket. Toad the Wet Sprocket is based in California, and the band met in high school. They started writing, recording and touring on albums over the last 25 years.
Please check out their event calendar, they have music almost every night.
A couple key notes: Their prices are a little on the high end, but you are paying for the experience and the quality of food and drinks. City Winery is an all ages venue but I wouldn’t really recommend taking small children because of the relaxed, quiet vibe and there aren’t children’s menus. The food is unique, and while delicious, probably not suited for a child’s palette. (Our daughter would be upset by the lack of chicken nuggets.)
I would highly recommend this as a great place to go on a date. If you are looking for a rustic, cozy but upscale place with great food and delicious wine, City Winery is definitely the place to go!