Nashville Farmers Market
It may not be a typical tourist sight, but this farmers market is worth a stop if you have time. There are several pavilions: a great vegetable market, a swap meet section, a gardening and nursery area, and an extremely impressive international food market that serves all of Nashville's immigrant communities.
And no, I don't think the Spam truck is a permanent feature of the farmers market! But I couldn't help taking a picture of it...up north, we don't see this sort of thing very often.
How the Other Half Lives
Amazing food. Makes me hungry just to think about it. Although the place is too cost prohibitive for me on my current budget, I would love being able to splurge here. The steak alone, which was 12 oz, was forty dollars. If you want anything else to eat, such as salad, veggies, etc., you have to order it extra.
However, the chef gave started us off with a complimentary teeny-tiny open faced roast beef sandwich (which would have been perfect for the average liliputian), and although it was small, it was divine. ::sigh:: if only I could be satisfied with a square inch of food... New York Strip. Perfectly prepared.
From Pit to Plate
I was hungry and needed to eat before a performance at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, so I started walking. Down the hill I picked up the distinctive smell of barbeque, so I followed my nose to Jack's.
The place is rather unassuming, but the line inside made me think this might be something special - and I was right!
The prices are very reasonable - for less than $7, I got the regular pork sandwich, a soft drink and Lay's. Literally, all that and a bag of chips!
Downstairs and upstairs dining, Patio out back overlooks the Ryman Auditorium. Perfect if you visit Nashville in the Fall/Winter when the Grand Ole Opry returns to the Ryman.
Also - if you really like the sauces, they are available for purchase at the restaurant, and on their website. The pork sandwich was soooo juicy and tender. There are three sauces from which to choose - or mix and match! I was afraid of the "hot", but the "mild" was sweet and yummy, and the "medium" was vinegar tangy.
When I go back - and I WILL be going back - I'd like to get a plate, because those sides looked GOOD!
Grand ol opry
Built as a church in 1892, the Ryman housed the Grand Ole Opry from 1943-1974. The Ryman was named a National Historic Landmark in 2001. It seems the attraction to us County and western European oldies, is simply to see the buiilding which we have heard about much of our lives, but never saw.There is now a museum in the Ryman for which there is a charge, and backstage tours at yet further cost.
An unsung part of a bigger museum
Hatch Show Print is a little gem, appealing to music lovers, Americana buffs, and design hipsters. The Hatch runs one of America's oldest letterpress print shops and features inconic advertising posters celebrating American pop culture.
Here's what their website has to say, far better than I could myself: It started, naturally enough, with the Hatch family. William H. Hatch ran a print shop in the town of Prescott, Wisconsin, where his two sons, Charles R. and Herbert H. (born in 1852 and 1854, respectively), grew up and learned the craft of letterpress printmaking. In 1875, William moved his family to Nashville where, four years later, Charles and Herbert founded CR and HH Hatch.
From their very first print job - a handbill announcing the appearance of Rev. Henry Ward Beecher (brother of Harriet Beecher Stowe), the Hatch Brothers got the look right. Here was the simplicity, the effortless balance between type size and style, vertical and horizontal layout. Here too was the distinct whiff of American history, Southern culture and entertainment.
Hatch flourished, for these were the days when show business was get-up-and-go business. Show posters created the excitement that sold the show, covering the sides of buildings and barns in cities and towns throughout the country. Whether circus, minstrel show, vaudeville act or carnival, if you wanted to fill seats, Hatch got the job done.
From the mid-1920s, when Charles' son Will T. Hatch took over the business, until Will's death in 1952, Hatch lived its Golden Age. It was a golden era for country music as well, and Hatch captured the magic. Will frequently turned his talent as a master woodblock carver to "chiseling and gouging" (as someone once put it) some of the most indelible images of country music performers ever made. To further seal the historic link, Hatch's home from 1925 to 1992 was right behind the Ryman Auditorium, the "Mother Church" of country music.
Hatch captured the glory of other musical genres, doing work for the great African-American jazz and blues entertainers of the day such as Cab Calloway, Bessie Smith, Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong.
Just as eye-catching were the "bread and butter" posters that filled in the blanks during this time, the small jobs for filling stations, laundries, grocery stores and movie theaters. This openness to the sheer breadth of Southern culture and advertising helped Hatch Show Print survive the comparatively lean years that followed the death of Will Hatch in 1952. While letterpress printmakers found it hard to compete in the more modern, faster age of offset printmaking, Hatch could turn to country music and other "old faithfuls" for continued support, while embracing newer forms of entertainment such as all-star wrestling and rock and roll.
Ownership of Hatch changed hands several times in these years. Bill Denny (fittingly enough, son of Grand Ole Opry General Manager Jim Denny), Gaylord Entertainment and others all played roles in keeping Hatch alive. Gaylord was directly responsible for the generous donation of Hatch to the Country Music Foundation in 1992 and was also instrumental in helping Hatch move to its present location when the old building was razed.