clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile
Overhead shot of a whole roasted fish on a white plate topped with a pecan and herb sauce.
Whole roasted flounder with pecan meuniere from the Optimist.
Sam Angel/Eater Nashville

Where to Eat and Drink in Germantown

The Nashville neighborhood’s essential dining staples and notable new restaurants worth a visit

View as Map
Whole roasted flounder with pecan meuniere from the Optimist.
| Sam Angel/Eater Nashville

Known for its architectural charm and countless culinary destinations, Germantown consistently draws local diners and hungry travelers. Despite significant damage from 2020’s tornado, the historic neighborhood just north of downtown remains a designated hub of Nashville cuisine, starring a long lineup of award-winning restaurants, many of which helped put Nashville on the map. Get a taste of the neighborhood’s edible offerings at these essential stops.

Is your favorite Germantown eatery missing below? Have a suggestion for a future neighborhood guide? Let Eater know in the comments.

Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
If you buy something or book a reservation from an Eater link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics policy.

Big Al's Deli

Copy Link

Big Al’s is technically in Salemtown, but close enough to Germantown that both neighborhoods claim this top spot for breakfast and lunch. Big Al’s diner-style restaurant merges comforting hospitality and pleasing homestyle cooking serving classic breakfast items and Southern lunch staples features from fried catfish to spicy South Carolinian shrimp and grits in an atmosphere that feels like dining in a family member’s home.

Rolf and Daughters

Copy Link

A pillar of Germantown, Rolf and Daughters is a neighborhood establishment with national recognition that aptly labels itself as small, fun, focused, and seasonal. The ever-changing menu is anchored by the must-order handmade pasta, a smart approach to seasonal vegetables, sharable proteins, and sourdough with seaweed butter (a fan favorite).

Rolf and Daughters Bill Addison/Eater

5th & Taylor

Copy Link

Chattanooga restauranteur and multi-James Beard Award-nominated chef Daniel Lindley made a name for himself in Nashville with this warehouse-turned-restaurant. The menu is upscale, but not out of reach, with comforting dishes and familiar flavors ranging from bacon-wrapped quail to beer can chicken and Nashville hot cauliflower steak. When the weather is warm, snag a seat at the outdoor bar to sip on a cucumber gimlet or apricot-laced Old Fashioned.

The bar at 5th & Taylor.
Justin Chesney/Eater Nashville

Mother's Ruin

Copy Link

Nashville scored the first outpost of the NY-based bar, and the cocktails and standout late-night menu combine to make it worth a visit. The name Mother’s Ruin is a nod to the mid-eighteenth century nickname for gin, but non-gin lovers can breathe a sigh of relief because they’re pouring much more than just gin here. And, the Old Bay-seasoned waffle fries are some of the best in the city.

Old Bay-seasoned waffle fries.
Mother’s Ruin/Official Photo

Monell's Dining and Catering

Copy Link

Get your Southern food fix at this all-you-can-eat, family-style institution where fried chicken is served with every meal (as it should be). Locals know to go after hours for the midnight country breakfast, available on Saturdays from midnight to 3 a.m.

Butchertown Hall

Copy Link

Butchertown Hall brings its take on Texas barbecue and a modern approach to butchery to Germantown. Order anything with brisket — oak-roasted brisket tacos, brisket by the pound, or the brisket-grind double burger. Also, don’t miss the chorizo-crowned queso or top-notch margaritas.

Announcing the 2015 Eater Awards for Nashville
Inside Butchertown Hall.
Justin Chesney/Eater Nashville

Emmy Squared - Germantown

Copy Link

Named as Eater Nashville’s Restaurant import of the Year in 2018’s Eater Awards, Emmy Squared has been celebrated by locals for introducing Detroit-style pizza to Nashville. It should come as no surprise that the must-orders here are square-shaped pies, but you’ll also want to consider the award-winning burger. There’s now a new location in East Nashville.

Germantown Café

Copy Link

Germantown Café has been a neighborhood dining anchor since opening its doors in 2003, despite a two-year closure when its roof was blown off in the devastating 2020 tornado. Now it’s back with its classic, old-school menu favorites, like the plum pork and French onion soup, as well as a few new additions to mark its reinvention. Now is a good time to revisit for a reliably high-quality, service-oriented dining experience. Don’t skip dessert.

312 Pizza Company

Copy Link

Unlike its thin-crust peers, this pizzeria serves Chicago-style, deep-dish pies. The heartiest pizza comes with sausage chunks, pepperoni, and Italian beef, and is baked into a cast-iron pan. There are options here for vegans, vegetarians, thin-crust lovers, and late-nighters, too.

City House

Copy Link

City House has been a staple since 2007, and with Nashville native Chef Tandy Wilson at the helm, it is arguably Germantown’s most well-known restaurant. This standby serves contemporary Italian dishes, most notably a belly ham pizza fresh from the wood-fired oven, then topped with a runny egg.

The screened-in dining patio at City House.
City House Nashville

Henrietta Red

Copy Link

With breezy interiors and an emphasis on seasonal cooking, Henrietta Red quickly became a neighborhood hangout and must-visit destination for out-of-towners. Before sitting down to dinner, snag a seat at the bar for fresh or wood-roasted oysters. And don’t overlook the creative wine list or the brunch menu.

Inside Henrietta Red.
Sam Angel/Eater Nashville

Saint Stephen

Copy Link

James Beard Award-winning chef RJ Cooper holds the new record for tenure at the former Mop/Broom and Kuchnia & Keller space in Germantown. On the current menu: 7-year aged carnoroli risotto, fatty bluefin tuna tartare, and a wildly popular cheeseburger with black garlic aioli (happy hour only).

Crudo from Saint Stephen.
Saint Stephen/Official

Waldo's Chicken and Beer

Copy Link

Germantown’s fast-casual chicken-centric restaurant serves up fried chicken sandwiches and comforting sides. The popular “fowl mouth” sandwich is spicy habanero fried chicken thigh slapped on a toasted potato bun with cheddar, jalapeño slaw, herb mayo, and namesake Waldo’s sauce.

Sam Angel / Eater Nashville

Geist Bar + Restaurant

Copy Link

Germantown watering hole Geist opened in 2018 and quickly became known for its chic interior, outdoor champagne garden, and drinks like a sherry margaritas and guava daiquiri. Following a post-tornado rebuild and reopening, the bar and restaurant has added a movable roof and heaters for year-round outdoor dining and built on the rustic American menus, which offer dishes like hot broiled oysters with Aleppo bread crumbs and grilled salmon in sweet corn broth for dinner and a fried oyster BLT and pork roll for brunch.

Broiled oysters with Aleppo bread crumbs and grilled lemon.
Kenzie Maroney/Geist Bar + Restaurant

Von Elrod's Beer Hall & Kitchen

Copy Link

Germantown’s dining scene would be incomplete without a beer hall and sausage house that vows to continue the neighborhood’s tradition of butchery and smoking meats. Specialty sausages and Southern barbecue platters follow fried cheese curds and homemade pretzels on the menu. Slide into an outside communal table for a stein and a snack before a Sounds game.

Sausage and barbecue from Von Elrod’s Beer Hall & Kitchen.
Von Elrod’s Beer Hall & Kitchen

O-Ku Nashville

Copy Link

Germantown welcomed this Charleston-born restaurant to the neighborhood with open arms when it opened in 2020. Fresh fish is the star of the menu, but the sushi rolls also shine bright here. Usuzukuri, hamachi nigiri, hana rolls, and mushroom farro risotto all make a stellar first impression.

O-Ku Nashville/Official

Steam Boys

Copy Link

Steam Boys introduces Chinese comfort food rooted in traditional flavors and techniques with a vast selection of bao, dumplings, and noodles. For spice lovers, there is a hot dumpling bowl drenched in Sichuan pepper sauce.

Bao at Steam Boys.
Delia Jo Ramsey/Eater Nashville

The Optimist

Copy Link

Atlanta-based chef Ford Fry opened the Nashville iteration of seafood-focused the Optimist in June 2020, serving lobster rolls, oysters, ceviche and more in a stylish reclaimed warehouse anchored by an open kitchen and expansive patio bar. Standout dishes have included whiskey smoked salmon in buttermilk dressing, snapper en papillote, and whole roasted flounder with pecan meuniere.

Yellowfin tuna carpaccio with crispy sweetbreads, fava beans, and black trumpet mushrooms.
Sam Angel/Eater Nashville

Big Al's Deli

Big Al’s is technically in Salemtown, but close enough to Germantown that both neighborhoods claim this top spot for breakfast and lunch. Big Al’s diner-style restaurant merges comforting hospitality and pleasing homestyle cooking serving classic breakfast items and Southern lunch staples features from fried catfish to spicy South Carolinian shrimp and grits in an atmosphere that feels like dining in a family member’s home.

Rolf and Daughters

Rolf and Daughters Bill Addison/Eater

A pillar of Germantown, Rolf and Daughters is a neighborhood establishment with national recognition that aptly labels itself as small, fun, focused, and seasonal. The ever-changing menu is anchored by the must-order handmade pasta, a smart approach to seasonal vegetables, sharable proteins, and sourdough with seaweed butter (a fan favorite).

Rolf and Daughters Bill Addison/Eater

5th & Taylor

The bar at 5th & Taylor.
Justin Chesney/Eater Nashville

Chattanooga restauranteur and multi-James Beard Award-nominated chef Daniel Lindley made a name for himself in Nashville with this warehouse-turned-restaurant. The menu is upscale, but not out of reach, with comforting dishes and familiar flavors ranging from bacon-wrapped quail to beer can chicken and Nashville hot cauliflower steak. When the weather is warm, snag a seat at the outdoor bar to sip on a cucumber gimlet or apricot-laced Old Fashioned.

The bar at 5th & Taylor.
Justin Chesney/Eater Nashville

Mother's Ruin

Old Bay-seasoned waffle fries.
Mother’s Ruin/Official Photo

Nashville scored the first outpost of the NY-based bar, and the cocktails and standout late-night menu combine to make it worth a visit. The name Mother’s Ruin is a nod to the mid-eighteenth century nickname for gin, but non-gin lovers can breathe a sigh of relief because they’re pouring much more than just gin here. And, the Old Bay-seasoned waffle fries are some of the best in the city.

Old Bay-seasoned waffle fries.
Mother’s Ruin/Official Photo

Monell's Dining and Catering

Get your Southern food fix at this all-you-can-eat, family-style institution where fried chicken is served with every meal (as it should be). Locals know to go after hours for the midnight country breakfast, available on Saturdays from midnight to 3 a.m.

Butchertown Hall

Announcing the 2015 Eater Awards for Nashville
Inside Butchertown Hall.
Justin Chesney/Eater Nashville

Butchertown Hall brings its take on Texas barbecue and a modern approach to butchery to Germantown. Order anything with brisket — oak-roasted brisket tacos, brisket by the pound, or the brisket-grind double burger. Also, don’t miss the chorizo-crowned queso or top-notch margaritas.

Announcing the 2015 Eater Awards for Nashville
Inside Butchertown Hall.
Justin Chesney/Eater Nashville

Emmy Squared - Germantown

Named as Eater Nashville’s Restaurant import of the Year in 2018’s Eater Awards, Emmy Squared has been celebrated by locals for introducing Detroit-style pizza to Nashville. It should come as no surprise that the must-orders here are square-shaped pies, but you’ll also want to consider the award-winning burger. There’s now a new location in East Nashville.

Germantown Café

Germantown Café has been a neighborhood dining anchor since opening its doors in 2003, despite a two-year closure when its roof was blown off in the devastating 2020 tornado. Now it’s back with its classic, old-school menu favorites, like the plum pork and French onion soup, as well as a few new additions to mark its reinvention. Now is a good time to revisit for a reliably high-quality, service-oriented dining experience. Don’t skip dessert.

312 Pizza Company

Unlike its thin-crust peers, this pizzeria serves Chicago-style, deep-dish pies. The heartiest pizza comes with sausage chunks, pepperoni, and Italian beef, and is baked into a cast-iron pan. There are options here for vegans, vegetarians, thin-crust lovers, and late-nighters, too.

City House

The screened-in dining patio at City House.
City House Nashville

City House has been a staple since 2007, and with Nashville native Chef Tandy Wilson at the helm, it is arguably Germantown’s most well-known restaurant. This standby serves contemporary Italian dishes, most notably a belly ham pizza fresh from the wood-fired oven, then topped with a runny egg.

The screened-in dining patio at City House.
City House Nashville

Henrietta Red

Inside Henrietta Red.
Sam Angel/Eater Nashville

With breezy interiors and an emphasis on seasonal cooking, Henrietta Red quickly became a neighborhood hangout and must-visit destination for out-of-towners. Before sitting down to dinner, snag a seat at the bar for fresh or wood-roasted oysters. And don’t overlook the creative wine list or the brunch menu.

Inside Henrietta Red.
Sam Angel/Eater Nashville

Saint Stephen

Crudo from Saint Stephen.
Saint Stephen/Official

James Beard Award-winning chef RJ Cooper holds the new record for tenure at the former Mop/Broom and Kuchnia & Keller space in Germantown. On the current menu: 7-year aged carnoroli risotto, fatty bluefin tuna tartare, and a wildly popular cheeseburger with black garlic aioli (happy hour only).

Crudo from Saint Stephen.
Saint Stephen/Official

Waldo's Chicken and Beer

Sam Angel / Eater Nashville

Germantown’s fast-casual chicken-centric restaurant serves up fried chicken sandwiches and comforting sides. The popular “fowl mouth” sandwich is spicy habanero fried chicken thigh slapped on a toasted potato bun with cheddar, jalapeño slaw, herb mayo, and namesake Waldo’s sauce.

Sam Angel / Eater Nashville

Geist Bar + Restaurant

Broiled oysters with Aleppo bread crumbs and grilled lemon.
Kenzie Maroney/Geist Bar + Restaurant

Germantown watering hole Geist opened in 2018 and quickly became known for its chic interior, outdoor champagne garden, and drinks like a sherry margaritas and guava daiquiri. Following a post-tornado rebuild and reopening, the bar and restaurant has added a movable roof and heaters for year-round outdoor dining and built on the rustic American menus, which offer dishes like hot broiled oysters with Aleppo bread crumbs and grilled salmon in sweet corn broth for dinner and a fried oyster BLT and pork roll for brunch.

Broiled oysters with Aleppo bread crumbs and grilled lemon.
Kenzie Maroney/Geist Bar + Restaurant

Von Elrod's Beer Hall & Kitchen