Recently, my wife and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary which conveniently falls during the busiest time of year…between Christmas and New Year’s. As you can imagine, planning a romantic getaway during the holiday season requires some creativity, and this year was no different.
Thanks to the blessing of two small children, we chose to stay close to home and booked a night in the four-star Hutton Hotel and made a reservation in the acclaimed 1808 Grille located on West End in Nashville.
We were greeted warmly in the Hutton Hotel lobby and led to the 1808 Grille to begin our evening. The hostess welcomed us and brought us past the bar area which was filled with the light roar of people enjoying themselves. Our table was situated perfectly to take in the surrounding scenery both inside and outside the restaurant. The design of the woods and wall colors inside were expertly combined to create a lovely, romantic, warm and elegant restaurant to say the least. Chef Charles Phillips created a masterpiece of a meal both in presentation and taste. For our first course we chose the Mu-Shu duck fried ravioli with hoisin dipping sauce, and enjoyed the delicious beginning to the meal. My entrée was the New York Strip with oreganata rub, shiitake & parsnip frites, and 1808 signature steak sauce. I know that a steak can sometimes be the expected, least risky choice at a gourmet restaurant, but I tend to disagree and was very interested to taste Chef Charles’ take on the meal. I was surprised at the simple presentation with the steak sauce in a metal measuring cup, but I understood the message when I took my first bite. The meat was so well seasoned and cooked to perfection that any fancier presentation would have distracted me from the experience. All of the spices, the taste of the meat, and the steak sauce combined to make an unforgettable approach to the NY strip.
My wife’s entrée was the 1808 seafood feature with scallops in a pumpkin chipotle puree. The plate was intricately decorated, daring her to take the first bite, thus disrupting the artwork of a true professional chef. The taste was worth what ever hesitation she may have had in doing so as she put her hand on mine and simply said, “you have to try this!” Our meal ended with bananas benet as they should be in the brown paper sack and banana dipping sauce and apple blackberry cobbler which continued the theme of top-notch dining. This certainly wasn’t the common hotel restaurant that I have seen in the past. Instead I was wondering if the hotel was going to be able to match the restaurant for once. In my opinion, 1808 Grille is one of the finest dining experiences Nashville has to offer.
The King Suite did not disappoint with a stylish sitting room, a plush king sized bed with down comforter and pillows, and a stunning view of the Nashville skyline. The contemporary design of the bathroom was very well done and the Kohler digital rain shower was an unexpected extra. The room came with complimentary newspaper delivered to the doorstep, free wi-fi, and numerous room service options.
In all, the Hutton Hotel and 1808 Grille fit perfectly into the time slot between Christmas and New Years to make a memorable 9th anniversary. The experience lived up to our expectations and I would highly recommend this to anyone looking for a close to home romantic getaway.