Great weekend getaways are becoming more and more popular since the changing times now allow us to be a bit more virtual work wise if you’re lucky enough. I visited Tennessee a few years ago for my twin sisters bachelorette party to Nashville and it was so much fun. I love the southern charm, the people, the food, and the music so when I had a weekend to spare this spring, I took a trip to Nashville again!
This time I spent a few days in Nashville, a few days in an area outside of Nashville called Murfreesboro, and then I went to an amazing area of Tennessee called Franklin! I absolutely loved Franklin and already can’t wait to go back because it’s really such a great city. Here you’ll find many wineries and distilleries local to Tennessee which as you can imagine, it’s why I loved it so much. They have a great Main Street area with some awesome hotels, b&b’s, and quaint restaurants. Take a drive 15 minutes from the main square, and you’re in wine country where you can sip your way through some great wines. If you are more of a spirits lover, they have amazing distilleries too and an entire Tennessee Whiskey Trail where you can collect coins at each stop and build yourself a really fun collection.
Thanks to Visit Franklin who took me out for a day of food, wine, and whiskey; it was a ton of fun. We began at a great restaurant Culaccino which is a local Italian spot serving up incredible cocktails and pizza and so much more. When you enter you’re greeted by friendly staff and pass a gorgeous bar with a great wood burning pizza oven. Make your way to the table, and you have a menu full of delectable items to choose from. I had to choose a pizza, and it was amazing because they let it ferment 72 hours! I got the L’Angello Sacro which is piled with lamb sausage, smoked eggplant, goat cheese, and scallion Fresno chili. I also paired this pizza with a refreshing cocktail made with tequila and watermelon; it was so perfect with the slightly spicy pizza.
Afterwards we headed to Company Distilling who one of the co-founder’s changed the face of Tennessee whiskey and now it can be made in many counties across Tennessee. Believe it or not, which I totally didn’t, Tennessee only had three distilleries prior to Company Distilling co-founder Heath Clark changing the game. In a state where you think whiskey is everywhere, it was not, but now more and more distilleries are coming up and it’s thriving. Their spirits are phenomenal, and I must say the Straight Bourbon Whiskey finished in Maple Wood was one of my favorites. It’s complex and smooth like many of their bourbons but this one has a subtle sweetness making it perfect for sipping and cocktails. They produce a range of style as well, all varying on wood profiles, and strength and it’s an absolute must stop if you’re seeking to sip some great spirits in Franklin. I also fell for their gin too, and wound up taking home both bottles so I can make some Tennessee inspired cocktails at home in NY. The gin is a dry style, with a lot of fun citrus and floral notes. It has a great new label and is called Ghost Rail Gin so you should check it out! It’s subtle and honestly one of the only gin’s I can actually sip on with ice; so it’s really good! They offer many fun activities too including yoga, cocktails, fire pit evenings and so much more, so keep an eye out on their calendar if you’re in the area; it’s a destination spot you won’t want to miss.
After some spirits we headed to Arrington Vineyards which is such a sight to see! It reminded me of being at a winery in the Finger Lakes with a lot of land, spacious seating, tons of great wines, and picnic possibilities. They call it “Nashville’s wine country” because it’s that close which is really quite awesome, and as mentioned you can easily make this a day trip. However there is a lot to see, so next visit I am going to make an overnight trip to Franklin to explore even more. Arrington Vineyards sources grapes from other states and also grows their own Tennessee grapes. Tennessee has vineyards and grapes native to the area, however it’s nice to see the range of styles they offer which are very palate pleasing. I loved the Celebration Blanc and the Antebellum White along with the Merlot. It was a very hot and sunny day when we visited so it was refreshing to sit outside and have a flight or two of wine. They offer great flights to sip and choose from with a wide range of styles and flavor profiles so everyone can join in that’s 21+. Snacks are provided and sold but you can totally bring your own picnic if you would like too, which is awesome if you love to cook.
Last stop we enjoyed cocktails at Cork and Cow, an amazing spot for craft cocktails and some steaks and more. This restaurant is beautiful and very popular so a reservation is always preferred. The cocktails alone will win your heart as they did mine, but the food I hear is absolutely delicious. You’re in for a treat if you make this one of your stops as well.
As mentioned it’s now a great time for weekend getaways, and staying national is always a good idea, it’s much easier to travel the country now by plane or car ride, and from NYC it’s about a 2.5 hour flight or less to Nashville, which is very do-able for a weekend. Be sure to make Franklin one of your stops if you’re coming to Tennessee, you won’t be disappointed with all the amazing food, sips, shopping and more!
Want to see the entire day in Franklin? Check out my reel on Instagram!! More stories and highlights to come soon, and even some more visits to TN… stay tuned!