Edgehill Cafe is Nashville’s local ingredient-loaded breakfast and lunch oasis, offering early risers creative riffs on their much-needed java, plus a menu full of freshly made, inventive meals. Show up between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. for the happy-hour special and grab a coffee ($0.75–$0.88) before work’s weekly team-building clay-pigeon-shooting session, or treat your groggy taste buds to a market sandwich filled with egg, feta, fresh basil, and tomato, served on an everything bagel with a side of fruit ($6.50). Specialty drinks such as the toffee-nut-and-chocolate-enhanced Abbe Road ($4) make the perfect liquid complement to all of Edgehill’s morning meals. After the nationwide “La Cucaracha”–blaring sirens sound, signaling morning’s official end, leafy lunch items such as the strawberry salad, dotted with feta and drizzled with Dijon vinaigrette ($7), will sate ravenous Cabbage Patch Kids. Meatavores can try the turkey and pesto panini, served with bacon and swiss on a French baguette ($7).
Symmetry is a one-stop shop for all things healthy living. Here, the staff treats physical ailments and dietary deficiencies with massage, chiropractic services, colonics, and nutrient-rich foods. They stock their shelves with bulk herbs, supplements, massage tools, and their own brand of essential oils and perfumes, which can help you feel more relaxed than a sloth in a bubble bath. They also cultivate several garden towers and a 3-acre plot of land dedicated to growing fresh produce, located just 2 miles from the store.
Recently, they expanded their array of services with the Organic Juice & Smoothie Bar, where staffers churn organic, local fruits and veggies into juice and smoothies. In addition to selling their concoctions individually, they also develop menus for juice cleanses. They've received much positive feedback on the new beverage bar and have had clients integrate their creations into doctor-prescribed treatment plans for diseases such as cancer.
Each day at Benton's Cafe, staffers unveil a different fresh deli wrap, as diners peruse the permanent menu of classic American sandwiches, salads, and breakfast dishes. The kitchen staff assembles tried-and-true deli cuisine with classic cold cuts, Waldorf chicken salad, and tuna salad. They adapt their sandwich-smithing finesse at breakfast as well, piling eggs, bacon, and sausage atop biscuits and english muffins. A line-up of elegant pastries inhabits a display case that glistens under dangling light fixtures, floor-to-ceiling windows, and the perma-white grin of unemployed game show hosts angling for a complimentary snack.
Cooks prepare regional Mexican specialties at Las Fiestas Cafe, an eatery that opened in December 2012. They grill succulent shrimp for tacos with fresh avocado, simmer pork carnitas in rich mole sauce, and stuff empanadas with chorizo. Diners can also opt for Tex-Mex dishes such as fajitas with grilled chicken, steak, bacon, ham, and pineapple, or cheesy spinach burritos in flour tortillas.
The aroma of jerk-seasoned chicken wafts from the kitchen at Island Breeze Café, filling the air with the scent of authentic Caribbean cuisine. The café's cooks prepare other staples, such as fried tilapia filets, homemade carrot escabeche, and slow-cooked, beer-braised oxtail seasoned with traditional spices. They can complement each main course with a customary side such as rice, peas, fried plantain, and sautéed cabbage and carrots, as well as conclude them with a lineup of classic Caribbean desserts that include mango cream cake and coconut cake.
In addition an extensive variety of bean-juice beverages with Zoka Coffee (which won the coveted Macro Roaster of the Year award from Roast Magazine in 2007), Maxximo Jo's offers a full menu of tea, specialty cold drinks, smoothies, freshly made gelato, sorbetto, and baked goods. Actors playing grooms get in character over the intermingling of white and dark chocolate in the tuxedo ($3.45/sm), while real-life brides gulp white-chocolate mocha frappes ($3.65/sm) to make dress trains perky enough to hover above the ground. For a classic fix, slurp the silky combination of steamed milk and espresso in a café latte ($2.85 for a small), or treat tasters to a walk on the wild side with a mocha valencia (dark chocolate with a twist of orange, $3.45/sm). Wake from dreams of cows balancing papayas on their noses with 100% fruit peach-pear-apricot smoothies ($3.80/sm) or Maxximo Jo's large selection of fresh gelato and sorbetto flavors ($4 for 6 oz. cup), often featuring favorites such as pistachio, guava, and caramel.