A Girls Trip To Nashville / by Brooke Courtney

I thought about naming this post "How to eat-shop-walk-Uber-and-Lyft your way through Nashville in four nights, five days, with six friends at the end of January for your friend's 30th birthday." Buuuuut, then I realized that's pretty specific and the title would most definitely be cut off. 😂 So, instead, a "girls trip to Nashville" it is!

It all started several months ago when my friend Kim asked a bunch of her friends and me if we'd like to accompany her on a trip to Florida to celebrate her birthday... annnd also go to a horse show. 😂 But, Florida ended up not being the place for us, and when Nashville was suggested as location instead, everyone was in! Kim and I picked out the cutest Airbnb in East Nashville, and after communicating with our amazing hosts, I knew the trip was going to be so much fun.

Before we knew it, Kim, Kristen, Jenn, Korina, Jenna and I were packing our bags for almost a week away from home without kids! I'm pretty sure we were each feeling all the feels the night before we left, considering that our group text was filled with everyone going "just put <insert kid's name> to bed, and I totally didn't cry at all...😭".

Within fifteen minutes of landing at the Nashville airport, we had our luggage and were in a car headed towards Pharmacy to grab lunch before we checked into our Airbnb house. When I was in Nashville two summers ago, I had a Pharmacy burger and loved it! But this time I ordered their chicken sandwich with a side of black bean and corn salad and it was amazing. So were all the fries I ate off of everyone else's plates.

After lunch, we checked in to our house, claimed rooms and beds and roommates, followed by plopping down onto what is probably one of the comfiest couches of all time and space. Seriously though, how cute is this house!

Some of us took naps, some went to get coffee down the street from Bakery by Frothy Monkey, but it was a pretty chill afternoon overall, which was welcomed after our early morning flight. I also tried to eat the largest gumball ever... which didn't work. At one point, I was actually jumping on it with shoes and it wasn't moving.

I texted a friend from college who lives in Nashville and asked where we should go for dinner, and he suggested Bar Taco. And OH MY GOSH! The tacos were so stinkin' good, specifically the fish one and the pork-belly one, and the cauliflower one, and the guacamole and the key lime pie in a jar! Seriously, it was all so good that we actually went back for lunch the next day. And apparently just missed seeing Dierks Bentley by a few minutes! He'd just been there for lunch, sitting in the same booth we'd sat in the night before. Crazy! Even crazier was that Connie Britton was there the first night we were, celebrating her son's birthday with friends. Her son was dressed as The Flash and Jenn wanted so badly to go up to their table and ask for an autograph - from the kid, not Connie. 😂 It would have been awesome. We totally should have done that. #regrets

We topped off our first night in Nashville with Jeni's icecream.

The next morning we ate at The Pancake Pantry, where they brought Kim a mini stack of pancakes with candles for her birthday! And I'm not kidding when I say I am still dreaming about the sweet potato pancakes with cinnamon cream syrup I had. This blog as my witness, I will figure out how to make them and they'll be just as good.

After breakfast we walked over to 12 South and wandered through loads of cute shops, sipping sweet tea and taking our necessary photos by the I Believe in Nashville sign, and the white and blue striped wall. If you're looking to shop while in 12 South, make sure you stop in at Imogene + Willie, Whites Mercantile, Craft South and Draper James. Oh, and at some point during our time in 12 South we popped in at 5 Daughters Bakery, where I got their famous 100 layer doughnut and ate the whole thing before our Lyft driver even showed up. 😂

Apparently I missed the memo that Jenn was taking a picture of the bakery. 😂

Having been on our feet most of the day, we decided to stay at the house for dinner. We ordered pies from 5 Points Pizza which was right around the corner from our house, and Kristen and I went to pick it up while the other girls got the coffee table set up for our dinner. The pizza was delicious, and the garlic knots were HUGE! Jenn had found birthday candles earlier that night in our Airbnb house, so we shoved them down into the garlic knots and sang Happy Birthday to Kim as a surprise! 😂 Hands down one of my favorite parts of our trip is that we were staying in an actual house. It was so enjoyable to be able to do things like birthday celebrations, long naps and movie nights, and not feel like we were in some small (probably gross) hotel.

On our second morning in Nashville, we stood in line to eat at Biscuit Love. And it was worth every minute of the wait. Plus, our very kind waiter felt bad that we couldn't push two tables together, so he gave us a free cake! We almost sang Happy Birthday all over again, but c'mon.. the whole trip wasn't just about Kim. 😉 My fried chicken and biscuit was incredible, and their signature Bonuts (biscuit/donuts: fried biscuit dough, lemon mascarpone + blueberry compote) were legitimately out of this world. Had I known how good they were going to be, I would have just ordered a plate for myself as my meal. I suppose I'll just have to go back.

After breakfast, we walked around a few of the shops, and then stopped to take the #WhatLiftsYou wing photos. While I took photos of everyone in front of the wings, we booked an Uber and got a ride to a Starbucks down by Broadway. We sat at the Starbucks for quite awhile, enjoying our drinks and warming up before heading out to walk around the famous country music bars and shops.

Earlier in the week, we called Pinewood Social to make a reservation for bowling, but they were all booked up. We were so bummed! But, we knew it was more than just bowling, so we walked about a mile through town to go see it anyway, and I'm so glad we did. Turns out the next people didn't have a reservation until 5pm, and we got there just before 4:00 -- leaving us with an hour window to bowl one game on their vintage lanes. (Bonus info: I totally broke 100 while bowling. Pretty sure the epic neon Pinewood Social sign was giving me extra powers.)

While we could have eaten at Pinewood Social, we decided to walk back towards downtown to eat at Acme: Feed & Seed. And yep, you guessed it, it was amaze balls. Kristen and I shared an amazing salad (kale, squash, apples, golden raisins, spiced pecans, bleu cheese, maple vinaigrette), as well as sushi (fresh Philadelphia roll, deep fried Godzilla roll!) We sat at a long family style table right next to the band who was playing that night.

After dinner, we were ready to go back to the Airbnb house and go to bed, until we checked our phones and realized it was only 6:09pm and that would be incredibly lame. 😂 So instead, we went to The Big Bang - a dueling piano bar that takes all requests. We sat there and listened for over three hours, requesting everything from Bob Dylan to Baby Got Back. #classy

Considering that we'd walked almost seven miles throughout the day, we happily fell into our beds after the piano bar. We woke up slowly the next morning, and eventually walked to the Bakery by Frothy Monkey (for the second time) where we got our morning coffee and food. We spent the rest of the morning back at the house, taking long showers, talking about how impressive the piano bar musicians were, and planning our last day in Nashville.

For lunch we walked to Mas Tacos Por Favor - an authentic mexican resturant with an assortment of tacos and other standards. Everything we ordered was delicious and exactly what we were in the mood for. On the way to Mas Tacos we stopped in at Two Son, the coolest shop owned by my friends James + Aubrey.

After lunch, everyone else went to get drinks at Pharmacy (literally across the street) and then walked to another mural for photos before heading home. I, however, walked to our friend's house to visit for a little bit. It was so wonderful seeing Stephen, one of T.J.'s good friends (one of his groomsmen, actually!) and Jessica (who I hadn't seen in like 6 years!), and catching up about life, business, kids and everything in between. Stephen and Jessica own/operate The Peach Truck and no joke, their peaches are the best. THE BEST.

I only snapped one photo while I was at their house, and it was in a text to T.J. 😂 (To which T.J. replied, "Is that a deep v?")

Stephen and Jessica suggested that we should grab drinks and appetizers at Urban Cowboy (a B&B) before dinner, and like every other thing we did on this trip, I'm so glad we did. The place was incredibly cool, and everything was wood-fire cooked and crazy flavorful. 😍 

The only place remaining on our list was Hattie B's hot chicken. But we'd heard the lines could be crazy, so thanks to a tip from one of our drivers, we called ahead, skipped the line, and brought our food home to eat around the table. We spent our dinner talking about our favorite parts of the week, while drinking sweet tea and trying to save room for the cupcakes that somehow had made it back in the car with Kim, Kristen, Jenn and Korina.

We spent our last night in the house playing "Fishbowl" (sometimes called "Celebrity") and laughed so hard that we fell of the couch, cried, and maybe even farted a little bit. WHAT????? Ballerinas can fart too, you know.

Our entire trip was so fun -- start to finish. I am truly honored that Kim asked us all to go, and that we all said yes, took off work, and made it happen. It's a trip I will remember forever. 💖 #kims30thbashinnash

If you're looking to take a trip or vacation to Nashville, I would highly suggest staying in the little house we did, and pleassse feel free to comment with any questions you might have about where to eat or shop!