November 25, 2020

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Poindexter at the Graduate Hotel

8 min read

IMG2360Much of the restaurant industry has had to rapidly change its business model due to COVID-19, and we’re highlighting the Nashville places that are attempting to stay open. We will give you a critic’s pick for a restaurant and a dish, as well as a running list of restaurants still open that you can support. Today’s pick: Poindexter.

I live on the No. 7 Hillsboro line for the public bus system, which is great if I’m going to Green Hills or downtown. But Nashville’s hub-and-spoke system doesn’t make it easy to get anywhere besides the locations directly adjacent to the route. I have discovered, though, that the ol’ No. 7 does also offer easy access to most of Midtown, as long as you’re willing to walk a couple of blocks across the Vanderbilt campus where Division and 21st Avenue come together — which I am.

So rather than spending money to park in that crowded neighborhood, I’d much rather mask up and let WeGo do the heavy lifting for me. While it may be weird to jump back on the bus with a case of wine and spirits from Midtown Cork Dorks, I figure I’ll never see any of my fellow bus riders again socially, so I’m immune to their slightly derisive inquisitive looks.

I’m always looking for quick lunch spots in Midtown, and the choices are legion, including last week’s takeout option, Jasper’s. But just a block away, I found another fun choice on the ground floor of the riotously-decorated hotel, Graduate Nashville. Their lobby cafe is named Poindexter, and it offers a surprising range of fine carryout or dine-in options for a little coffee shop.

First of all, the Graduate is a darned entertaining spot to do a little people-watching over lunch. The lobby decorated with all sorts of fun country-music-inspired design elements, including a veritable shrine to Dolly Parton, the patron saint of the hotel’s gestalt. The airy ceilings make the space seem even more socially distanced than you’d expect for a lobby, and there are plenty of places to grab a spot on a sofa and do some work, sit at a table with great lighting for reading a copy of the Scene, jump on a Zoom call or to set up an Instagram photo shoot for your traveling party of bachelorettes, complete with multiple costume changes in the nearby restrooms. I saw all these things happening during my half-hour visit. (Well, not the costume changes.)

I was there to check out Poindexter, and I was duly impressed by what I discovered. The open coffee bar where you place your orders was actually a deception, because there’s an entire hotel kitchen feeding dishes for the grab-and-go options or for dining in at any of multiple seating options in the lobby. The baristas were also part of the production process, including whipping up a fine seasonal latte that I enjoyed with my lunch. Made with brown sugar and vanilla with a hint of bourbon-smoked sea salt, it was a delightful mix of sweet, smoky, bitter and salty, pretty much my flavor wheelhouse.

In addition to coffee and tea drinks, the coffee counter will also take your order for the entire menu of kitchen specialties, including pastries, breakfast bowls and biscuit sandwiches. (More on them later.)

IMG2359The kitchen also stocks a couple of refrigerators filled with quick to-go items, not the least of which is a cooler stocked with bottles of wine, sparkling wine and canned beers (which would probably be frowned upon if I enjoyed one on the bus ride home … it stinks to be a rule follower sometimes). The other cooler features sweet and savory items that would make for a great grab-and-go lunch if you didn’t want to wait for something hot from the kitchen. Items in that case include turkey muffuletta and smoked-pork-loin sandwiches, a fruity ambrosia parfait and a few really interesting salads that rise high above your typical prepared bowls.

I sampled a seasonal breakfast bowl made with a base of kale mixed with cucumbers, red onions, butternut squash and grains and then topped with a rich and syrupy balsamic dressing and the perfect accompaniment of a soft boiled egg. I really should add that to my weekly lunch rotation to get a little more healthy food in my diet.

Of course, me being me, I blew all those good intentions by topping off my meal with a biscuit sandwich from the kitchen, a decision I regret not a single iota! Developing a biscuit for sandwich use is always a tricky proposition, as the biscuit should be characteristically fluffy but also substantial enough to hold up to being stacked with toppings and enduring multiple bites without disintegrating. The biscuit sandwich at Poindexter held up to that standard at what I’d say would be about a B+ level, and that’s good enough for me.

IMG2363The flaky biscuit was topped with a scrambled egg and white cheddar cheese plus the headliner of thin slices of salty ham from Benton’s Smoky Mountain Country Hams. Admittedly, by about 75 percent of the way through the sandwich, it had crumbled into a bit of a mess on my plate, but it wasn’t like any of those bachelorettes were planning to ask me to be part of their photo shoot anyway. I just plunged on, oblivious to the artistic pursuits taking place around me, and happily jumped on the bus for the return trip home.

Those women didn’t know what they were missing. The biscuit, not me.

#CarryOutandCarryOn


Below is a list of Nashville restaurants (with links) remaining open for takeout and delivery during the COVID-19 shutdown. While some may have had existing relationships with delivery providers, most of this list are offering the service for the first time. Most offer curbside pickup, but check when you order. As this list is a moving target, please leave any changes, suggestions or omissions in the comments.

Places with takeout or delivery as of Wednesday, Nov.18

12South Taproom (Postmates)

312 Pizza Co. (Grubhub)

400 Degrees

5th & Taylor

51st Deli (Uber Eats, Grubhub, Postmates)

51st North Taproom (11 a.m.-8 p.m., Thursday-Sunday)

615 Deli (DoorDash. Grubhub, Postmates, Uber Eats)

8th & Roast

Adele’s/The 404 Kitchen (Friday-Sunday)

Amerigo

Answer

Arnold’s Country Kitchen (Most delivery services)

Athens Family Restaurant

Attaboy at Lakeside Lounge

B1281 (Uber Eats)

Baja Burrito

Bar-B-Cutie

Barcelona Wine Bar

Barista Parlor (Postmates)

Barr’s Music City Soul Food (Uber Eats, Tuesday-Sunday)

Bartaco

Big Al’s Deli

Big Bad Breakfast (DoorDash, Uber Eats)

Big Shake’s Hot Chicken

Biscuit Kitchen by Loveless Cafe

Biscuit Love

Black Dynasty via Bar Sovereign

Black Rabbit

Blue Coast Burrito

The Bluebird Cafe (Grubhub)

BokBox

Bolton’s Spicy Chicken & Fish

BoomBozz West (DoorDash)

Brightside Bakery (Ordering open at 3 p.m. Tues.-Sat. for next-day pickup Wed.-Sun.)

Brother Z’s Wangs

Burger Joint (Uber Eats, Grubhub)

Burger Up 12South

Butchertown Hall

Cafe at Thistle Farms

Caffé Nonna (Uber Eats, Postmates)

Cafe Roze

The Cake Project

Capitol Grille

Cal’s Country Kitchen

Carniceria y Taqueria Don Juan

Central BBQ (DoorDash, Postmates)

Chicken Salad Chick

Cinco de Mayo (9 locations)

Chago’s Cantina

Char (Postmates)

The Chef & I

Chef’s Market

Chile Burrito

Cilantro Mexican Grill (Eighth Avenue location)

City House

City Winery (Grubhub, Uber Eats)

Cole’s Kitchen

Coneheads

Corner Market Catering

Corner Pub (DoorDash)

Cupcake Collection (Sunday-Friday)

D’Andrews Bakery & Cafe

Daddy’s Dogs

Dalt’s Grill

Darfon’s

Del Frisco’s Grille

DeSano Pizza Bakery

Diskin Cider

Doll’s Family Cafe (Postmates, DoorDash)

Donks Bar & Grill

Donut + Dog

Double Dogs (Uber Eats, Grubhub, Postmates)

Dozen 

Earnest Bar & Hideaway

East Nashville Beer Works

Eastern Peak (Uber Eats, Grubhub)

East Side Banh Mi

Ed’s Fish House (Thursday-Saturday)

Edley’s

8 Hour BBQ

Ellington’s Mid Way Bar & Grill

Emmy Squared

Epice

Etch

Etc.

Far East (Postmates)

The Farm House

Farm Burger (DoorDash)

Fat Bottom Brewing

Fat Boy’s BBQ

Fat Kat Slim’s (Uber Eats, Grubhub)

Fattoush Cafe

Fido (ChowNow)

Five Points Pizza (Postmates)

Flavor Catering

Fleet Street Pub

The Food Co.

Folk (Postmates)

Fox’s Donut Den

Frothy Monkey (Postmates, Uber Eats)

Stick

Gray & Dudley

Germantown Pub

Gino’s East

Ghot Wingz (Tuesday-Saturday)

GReKo Greek Street Food

Green Chile (Friday-Sunday)

Green Hills Grille

The Grilled Cheeserie

H&T’s Home Cooking

Hathorne

Hattie B’s (Uber Eats)

Helen’s Hot Chicken

Henley

High Class Sweets

HiFi Cookies

HoneyFire Barbeque Co. (Grubhub, DoorDash)

Hugh Baby’s (DoorDash)

Hunters Station (The Grilled Cheeserie, Vui’s Kitchen, Hugh Baby’s, Tacos Aurora, Citizen Market)

Hurt’s Hot Chicken

IT’Z A Philly Thing (Wednesday-Sunday)

J. Alexander’s Redlands Grill

J. Christopher’s

Jack’s Bar-B-Q (Trinity Lane location only)

Jamaicaway (DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates)

Jim ‘N Nick’s

Jonathan’s (Grubhub)

Josephine (Postmates)

Joyland

Kalamatas

Kay Bob’s

Kien Giang

King Market

Korea House

The Kupcake Barr

Ladybird Taco

Lafayette Soup Company (Richland Park Farmer’s Market)

Lakeside Lounge

Las Palmas (DoorDash)

Lemongrass Sushi & Thai

Local Distro (Tuesday-Saturday)

Lockeland Table

The Loading Dock

Long Hollow Pizza & Pub

Loveless Cafe

Love, Peace and Pho

Lucky Bamboo

Mane & Rye

Mangia Nashville

Margot Café & Bar

Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint

Maru Sushi & Grill

Mas Tacos

McCabe Pub

McDougal’s (Hillsboro Village only)

Midnight Oil

Miel

Miss Saigon (All delivery services)

Mitchell Deli

Mixed Grill Cafe

M.L. Rose Craft Beer & Burgers (Postmates)

Monell’s

Mother’s Ruin

Moto (Uber Eats)

Nada

Nashville Chicken & Waffles

Nations Bar & Grill

Nicky’s Coal Fired (Postmates)

Nicoletto’s Italian Kitchen

North Italia (DoorDash)

Nectar Urban Cantina (Grubhub, Uber Eats, Postmates)

Nomzilla! Sushi Et Cetera (Uber Eats, Postmates)

Noshville

Oak Steakhouse

O-Ku Sushi 

Old Glory

The Old School

Otaku Ramen

Otaku To Go

Pancho & Lefty’s (Uber Eats, DoorDash)

Park Cafe

The Party Line (Julia Sullivan’s catering service through Strategic Hospitality)

Party Fowl (Uber Eats)

Pastaria

PDK Southern Kitchen and Pantry

Peach Cobbler Factory

Peg Leg Porker

The Pharmacy Burger

Phat Bites

The Picnic Cafe

Pinewood Social (Postmates, Grubhub, Uber Eats)

Pizza Perfect

Pork Belly Cafe (Uber Eats, Grubhub, Postmates)

Portland Brew

Potato Mountain 615

Prince’s Hot Chicken (Nolensville Road)

Proper Bagel (Takeout & delivery only)

Radical Rabbit

Rated V

Red Bicycle (Postmates)

Redheaded Stranger

Red Phone Booth (DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates)

Rib Doctor BBQ

Riddim N Spice (Postmates,DoorDash)

Rise Biscuits

Rocky’s Wing Shack

Rolf and Daughters (Postmates)

Rosemary & Beauty Queen (Postmates, Uber Eats)

Rosepepper Cantina (Postmates)

Rosie’s Twin Kegs

Saint Anejo (Uber Eats)

Sam & Zoe’s

Sambuca

Sam’s Place 

San Antonio Taco Co. (DoorDash)

Santo

Scout’s Pub

Seafood Sensation (DoorDash)

Shugga Hi Bakery & Cafe (Friday-Saturday; Uber Eats) 

Sinema

Sitar

The Slider House

Slim & Husky’s (DoorDash)

Slow Burn

Smokin’ Thighs

SmoQe Signals BBQ

Sonobana

The Southern Steak & Oyster

The Southern V

Southside Grill (DoorDash)

Soy Bistro

Sperry’s

Stoney River Steakhouse

Stateside Kitchen

Stay Golden

STK Steakhouse

StrikeOut Wingz (Grubhub)

Subculture Urban Cuisine & Cafe (Uber Eats, Grubhub, DoorDash, Postmates)

Sugarlips Bakery

Sunflower Cafe

Superica

Surreal Spice Creations

Sushi Circle

Sweet 16th (Tuesday-Saturday, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.)

Swett’s

Tacos y Mariscos Lindo Mexico

Taco Mama

Tacos With A Twist

Taj (Uber Eats)

TailGate Brewery (Postmates)

The Tasty Wheel (Postmates, Grubhub, DoorDash)

Taqueria Andrea and La Mini Michoacana

Tavern at Bobby

Taziki’s (Postmates, Grubhub)

Tennessee Brew Works

TennFold (Grubhub, Postmates)

Thai Esane

Tinwings

TKO (Postmates)

Tower Market and Deli (Grubhub, Postmates, DoorDash, Bite Squad)

Trattoria Il Mulino

Treehouse

Twilight Tavern

Two Ten Jack

Urban Cookhouse

Urban Grub

Urban Juicer

Valentino’s

Vege-licious Cafe (Tuesday-Saturday; Chow Now)

Veggie Village

Village Pub & Beer Garden

Virago (Uber Eats)

Von Elrod’s Beer Hall & Kitchen 

VN Pho & Deli

Vui’s Kitchen

Walden (Postmates)

Waldo’s Chicken & Beer

The Wild Cow (Postmates, DoorDash and Chow Now)

Wildman Smoothies, Soups & Salads

WKND Hang Suite

Woodlands

The Yellow Porch

’Za Wood Fired Pizza (Grubhub)

Zilla’s Pit BBQ

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