While Fat Bottom Brewing in East Nashville has been open to the public since mid-August, The Husband and I didn’t get a chance to make the trip down the street [just a few blocks in the other direction from Lockeland Table] to visit the new brewery and taproom until last week. direction from Lockeland Table] to visit the new brewery and taproom until last week.
To the unassuming public driving down Gallatin Road [or, technically, Main Street] the building housing Fat Bottom just looks like a Fluffo Mattress warehouse. If you’re lucky enough to be staring out the window you’ll probably end up doing a double-take in the large glass windows once you see the large stills [? I’m so at a loss for words when it comes to the technicality of brewing so please, excuse me. :)].
Right from the entrance to the brewery you get a sense of the style, ambiance and decor that’s carried throughout the entire brewery, taproom and bar at Fat Bottom. Rustic reclaimed wood, steel and glass are carried throughout the whole place.
A sucker for a good chalkboard, I love the menu that greets you right when you walk into the brewery.
The beers! The Ginger, Bertha and Black Betty were the only three available when we visited. The Ruby seems to be [based on Fat Bottom’s news on their Facebook and Twitter pages] the next beer on tap. I, for one, love the whole 40’s-50’s pin-up style with the beer naming + label designs. Consistency with branding is important and Fat Bottom’s approach is only going to make it easy for fans and new customers alike to quickly recognize when one of their brews is available on tap at a local bar or restaurant.
The entire brewing operation is open to the visiting public and Ben and the rest of the Fat Bottom team have encouraged observation by not only advertising when certain steps of the brewing process are slated to begin but also installing bar stools and tall chairs + tables along the front room which houses the brewing piece of the brewery. There are even outlets along the wall at every tall table + set of chairs, so I can imagine lots of folks bringing laptops and spending many an afternoon there [at least once the weather outside cools down, making the inside temperature a bit more bearable. the process either requires or exudes a bit more warmth than is comfortable in the middle of the summer!].
The bar! More chalk, more wood, more stainless/metal. It’s a great roomy bar with room for a dozen or so customers without needing to crowd on one another.
Exposed Edison-style lightbulbs. Swoon.
A fun custom-built lit display for a collection of craft brews [and I believe I spied a few Dr. Browns sodas in there!].
The beer garden is HUGE. There were about 5 or 6 two-top tables out there and plenty of benches. When we went it was still a bit humid [thanks, Nashville summer!] so we stuck inside. Can’t wait for a great fall evening to kill a few hours out here with some friends and plenty of tasty brews and nosh.
Though I’ve had the opportunity to sample Fat Bottom’s brews already at a Green Wagon / 5 Points Second Saturday event as well at Brew at the Zoo, the Husband and I both ordered a flight so we could re-sample a bit of everything Fat Bottom currently has on tap. I made it through both the Black Betty and Ginger and finished about half of the Big Bertha. Of the three I surprised myself in that I preferred the Betty over the Ginger.
Once our friends arrived we ordered an appetizer on special that evening – arancini with crayfish. While the fried rice balls were a bit greasy, the flavor was perfect – saucy, savory and just enough of a nod to the sea with the crayfish. If they are still on the menu when you visit, I would definitely recommend these as a great to-share order.
Once the taproom was open for business my twitter feed was absolutely inundated with love for the charcuterie plate [ahem, Vivek, David + Karl!]. I had my eye on the cured salmond BLT with which to stuff my face for dinner, so the four of us decided to split the Chef’s Choice plate which included 3 cheeses and 3 meats of the Chef’s choice. In the meat department we had [from the top left clockwise] house made duck terrine, sopressata and salame varzi. For cheese we were gifted with [from the top left, counter-clockwise] green hill [soft and creamy], cave man blue [the best kind of stinky!] and the mimolette [sharp and nutty]. Accoutrements in the middle included peach preserves, housemade mustard [it was delicious, stone-ground!] olives and olive oil. Housemade crackers, nutty Provence bread and watermelon rounded out the platter. We devoured everything but the olive oil and the watermelon. Highly recommend [nay, require!] you order some version of the charcuterie, cheese or combination plate when you visit. Everything is so carefully selected and so well presented. I could nosh on these platters every week, so don’t be surprised if you see me at Fat Bottom every time you go!
I knew I was going to have the [ginger-] Cured Salmon BLT served with Benton’s bacon, aioli, pickled okra and fries. The sandwich was great – just-toasted-enough bread, sweet + salty salmon and crunchy smoked Benton’s. I skipped the aoli as I didn’t think the sandwich was lacking as it was, and the potato wedges were a bit on the greasy side. The pickled okra was fantabulous – light on the pickle, great crunch on the veggies. I’m hoping that the chef works out the balance of the frying in the kitchen because while the arancini and the potato wedges were pretty darn good, they could so very easily have been great if they had been just a bit less greasy.
Amongst the table we also devoured the plate of Deviled Eggs and the Bangers and Champ. The standard menu is varied and well cooked and plated and it seems like Ben and the kitchen staff are always working on adding a variety of specials every week [rotating special quesadillas, the arancini, chicken schnitzel, hot mortadella sandwich, etc.]
Overall, Fat Bottom Brewing is a fabulous addition to East Nashville and is easily worth a visit for those of you just making a visit to Music City, USA or for those of you on the other side of the river.
900 Main Street . Nashville, TN . 37206
615-678-5895 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday – Friday 4:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m | Saturday 2:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.