Here’s how I ended up at Nashville’s City House: a friend told me to go. I didn’t look at the menu. I didn’t even ask him what to get. He told me to go, I made a reservation. I didn’t even know that chef/owner Tandy Wilson was Nashville’s only James Beard winner.
For those who don’t know but plan on visiting, City House is in what appears to be an old house in the city (Germantown, to be specific) without much signage out front. Yes, we walked right past it like total Nashville n00bs. A local couple saw us looking for it and pointed us in the right direction. It was all very embarrassing.
We ordered a a couple dishes to start: tomatoes with cottage cheese and scrapple (I cannot resist ordering scrapple) with cucumbers, ranch, and cornbread croutons. For entrees, we picked the delightfully unique bowl of corn, rice, smoked catfish, fish sauce, cider vinegar, and peanuts—it seems like someone like Thai food—and a homey, comforting smoked chicken sugo with grits ‘al forno’.
While all of those were good to very good, there was one true stand out. Something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately while I eat salads and chicken breasts to help mitigate a growing belly.
The pizza. My god, friends. The pizza. Had I known how good that damn pizza was going to be, I would have taken 30 more photographs. Hell, I probably wouldn’t have even ordered the other two entrees. I’d have just ordered more pizza.
The toppings were quality, but nothing wild and crazy: belly ham, mozzarella, Grana Padano, oregano, and chilies. Nothing outside what you’d find at Pastaria or Melo’s here in St. Louis. But that crust…
For you St. Louis readers, it comes out looking similar to a Pastaria pizza, but the main difference is the how crispy it is. You get a crunch with your bite, but you still get that nice chewy dough when you finally get to the crust. It has a unique flavor profile too—I’m not sure if it’s the flour they use, how long it’s fermented, or what.
But it’s glorious.
cucumber, ranch, cornbread croutons
corn, rice, smoked catfish, fish sauce, cider vinegar, peanuts
Smoked chicken sugo
grits al forno
belly ham, mozzarella, grana padano, oregano, chilies