Whole lot of food news this week, both of the happy and not-so-happy variety.
The latest East Nashville News:
Holland House closing
After Saturday, July 22’s service, East Nashville restaurant Holland House Bar & Refuge is set to close its doors, founder Terrell Raley announced via Facebook Thursday.
In “A Heartfelt Goodbye To Holland House,” Raley outlined “a year of fruitless lease renewal negotiations” and the need to focus more time on his Amaranth Hospitality Group, the company behind Germantown’s Butchertown Hall, as reasons for the closure. He also nodded to the community’s support, particularly in the wake of a robbery early in the restaurant's seven-year life.
“I knew the publicity would kill us before we ever had a chance to start,” he wrote. “The incident likely should have ruined us. But it did not. You came out and carried us on... As change our city undergoes (sic), still its genuinely kind, generous people make Nashville a special place to live.”
Holland House opened at 935 West Eastland Avenue in 2010, becoming a locational trendsetter on an East Nashville corner that’s now a magnet for Nashville food fanatics, with Mas Tacos and The Pharmacy across the street and next door.
Read Raley’s full goodbye message here, and head by 4 p.m. to midnight Friday and/or Saturday if you’d like to toast to and with Holland House one last time.
Shugga Hi says hello
Another one we've been waiting on: The new Shugga Hi Bakery & Cafe has opened its doors at 1000 Dickerson Pike, serving spot-on comfort food and impeccably decadent sweet stuff.
Led by sisters and East Nashville natives Kathy Leslie and Sandra Austin, Shugga Hi kicked off a soft-opening run on Thursday and Friday, July 20 and 21, with a grand opening set for Saturday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
On the menu, you’ll find familiar fare like ribs and chicken and waffles, plus some rib-sticking specialties, like a cake waffle burger (with cake-batter buns and applewood smoked bacon), a biscuit “bomb” (stuffed with eggs, bacon, sausage, cheese and more), and an array of alcohol-infused cakes.
We first heard rumblings of the new eatery back in November, when the sisters were shooting for a late-2016 opening. At a ribbon-cutting celebration on Wednesday, Leslie said the two took the extra time to fine-tune both the space and menu to meet Austin’s perfectionist expectations.
“We really are so very proud of this place,” Austin said, welcoming a crew of East Nashville well-wishers that included Metro Councilmen Scott Davis and Anthony Davis and State Rep. Brenda Gilmore. “It has truly been a labor of love. … We hope to be here for many, many more years to come.”
Shugga Hi’s initial hours will be 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday. For more, visit Shugga Hi on Facebook.
Walk Eat Nashville launches new ‘Nashville Eats’ tour
East Nashville-based food tour company Walk Eat Nashville just added another jaunt to its schedule: A Monday “Nashville Eats Food Tour,” led by revered Nashville food writer (and sometime East Nashvillian contributor) Jennifer Justus, and nodding to her 2015 book of the same name.
Over the course of a three-hour, one-mile walking tour, attendees will stop at five different downtown food spots — including Martin’s Bar-b-que joint and the Goo Goo Shop & Dessert Bar — to learn about and taste Nashville food. At the end, everyone takes home a personalized, hardcover copy of Nashville Eats, stocked with recipes and more behind-the-scenes stories.
Tickets run $88 per person/$138 for a pair, and are available on the Walk Eat Nashville website.
The walking food tour company was launched in 2014 by journalist and longtime East Nashvillian Karen-Lee Ryan, and since, it’s branched from a single recurring East Nashville tour into four different culinary crash courses, including ones in Midtown and SoBro.
For a full rundown of Walk Eat options, visit walkeatnashville.com.
Crossfit East Nashville, coming soon
A hat tip to Southern Athena for this one: A new gym is coming to the (very immediate) East Side of the river, right by Music City Indoor Karting.
The folks behind CrossFit East Nashville are aiming to get the doors soft-opened at 400 Davidson Street, Suite 410, in early September, with a spate of free community workout opportunities in August, midweek and on Saturdays throughout the month.
The start of their full class schedule depends on the build-out, those folks tell us — if locker room and shower facilities are still in progress come September, they plan to start with a limited schedule during pre-work and post-work hours, and ramp up.
The new fitness stop is a family affair, led by co-founder couples Josh and Kiel Hunter and Caleb and Katie Gregory. Keep up with opening plans at CrossFit East Nashville’s Facebook page or at crossfiteastnashville.com.
Wearing tomatoes and busting records
If you’ve been to the Tomato Art Fest in East Nashville before, this year’s event will have a lot of familiar pieces — the Friday Tomato Art Preview Party, droves of vendors spread throughout Five Points, a whole mess of live music.
One new twist you’ll want to take note of, though: In 2017, organizers are aiming to break a World Record. Specifically, the “Largest Gathering of People Dressed as Fruits/Vegetables.” Obviously, they’ll need your help.
The World Record attempt is scheduled for Friday, August 11 at 7 p.m. around Five Points. If you’d like to be part of history, come by. Preferable dressed as a tomato. But if you don’t have tomato garb, come anyway — organizers are ready to 'mater you up.
There’s a high bar: The current record is 888 people, set in Japan earlier this year.
This won’t be the first time a creative World Record gets the East Nashville treatment — in 2015, a crew of local comedians set out toward (and succeeded in) breaking the record for “Longest Stand-up Comedy Show (with) Multiple Comedians,” and turned the record-breaking event into an annual affair.
For more on the Tomato Art Fest’s record attempt, drop by the fest’s Facebook page.
— July’s Cornelia Fort Pickin’ Party is this Saturday, July 22, and the line-up's a great one, with the Allen Thompson Band and Rorey Carroll (plus you, if you’d like to bring an instrument). Doors at 6 p.m. at the Cornelia Fort Airpark; tickets are $12 in advance, $15 at the door.
— Onetime East Nashvillian cover stars The Wild Feathers join a crew of massive talents (including sElf and Billy Joe Shaver) on the other side of the river Saturday, for the Elliston Place Street Fest. Gates are at 3 p.m., with proceeds to benefit the Nashville Independent Business Alliance.
— Rebuilding Together hosts a tool yard sale at the lot adjacent to Bongo Java in Five Points on Saturday, July 22. All proceeds to benefit Rebuilding Together Nashville and their mission of preserving affordable homeownership by providing home repairs to low-income homeowners. More about the tool yard sale here. Read all about Rebuilding Together’s work in our pages.
— Once again, Manuel Delgado and Delgado Guitars get some local-news love (this time from NewsChannel 5). For more on this East Nashville family business, read our Artist in Profile on Manuel Delgado.
— Sports Illustrated explores where to eat and drink in Nashville, and Rosemary, Urban Cowboy Public House and Smith & Lentz are on their list.
— Mutterings that Bailey & Cato might be reopening in Madison, from Eater Nashville. The beloved meat-and-three closed last year, and matriarch Linda Bailey told us then that her sons were looking to find their own location.
— Ooh, purdy. Check out one of our stylish East Nashville neighbors' homes getting repped on Apartment Therapy.
— So, um, the TBI found a cockatiel at the HQ in East Nashville. (S)he yours?
That’s all for this week. Have East Nashville news tips to share? Please email Nicole.