MoD July|Aug ’18

We’ve had a few months with far more openings than closings on the East Nashville business front — fun to see, and a nice complement to our Tomato Art Fest season of celebrating the independent spirit in East Nashville.


The longtime home of Holland House is humming once again: In June, Lyra — a “modern Middle Eastern” concept from longtime Nashville hospitality vets Hrant Arakelian and Elizabeth Endicott — opened its doors at 935 W. Eastland Ave. It was a long road to Lyra’s debut — we first started hearing rumblings about Lyra plans late last year, a few months after Holland House’s surprise shuttering. Walking inside, it’s clear the months of work paid off: The space has been completely overhauled with a more open, bright, and airy approach. The huge, central bar that occupied the previous space was removed so diners now have a straight view into the kitchen and its cozy wood-burning oven. The new kitchen has started things off by delivering fresh twists on classic Middle Eastern favorites, including fresh-baked pita with hummus, bright carrot kibbeh wraps with sweet dates, baba ganoush served in full eggplant skins, and more. This marks something of a homecoming for Arakelian, who led the Holland House kitchen around 2014, and whose resume also boasts stints at celeb chef Jonathan Waxman’s Adele’s and at longstanding East Nashville wine spot Rumours East.

Speaking of Rumours East. … This is not a drill: East Nashville finally has Indian food. But it’s with a bit of a twist. The Rumours East space at 1112 Woodland St. passed to new owners in May, and by June, new East Nashville eatery eDESIa — an Italian/Indian fusion concept — had already soft-opened its doors. It’s an unusual blend, and one that GM Sathyan Gopalan was excited to introduce to East Nashville. “Things like spinach gnocchi can come out with a spinach sauce that’s Indian, and give a nice texture,” Gopalan told us. The initial eDESIa menu bears that out, with dishes like spaghetti in a house-made masala sauce, pasta with a curry ragout, and polpettine meatballs garnished with mint. Gopalan, the former GM at high-end Italian spot Tartufo, is joined in the kitchen by chef Carl Schramm, who’s worked at celeb chef Maneet Chauhan’s Tànsuᅦメ and Mockingbird, along with Capitol Grille and other Nashville restaurants. The eDESIa crew also includes a cast of staffers carrying over from Rumours, including wedding coordinator Tammera McClendon and cocktails- wrangler Jacob McFeely (the latter told us that he’s working approachable punches and “a lot of florals and herbs” into the bar program, which, at press time, was awaiting a TABC license to officially launch). Learn more at

Another East Nashville combination we haven’t seen before: In May, we welcomed a gym/plant shop/art gallery called Grow- House Method at 1105 Woodland St. Co-owners Molly Caroline and Shaun Guttridge created their space to inspire wellness, whether that means immersive strength training (including private sessions and group classes) or bringing a little more life into your life, with leafy new friends you can purchase and take home. The workout space is filled with available houseplants, chosen by Caroline, who has a background in floral design and a degree in horticulture. She told us she sees this as a lot more than a way to pretty up the gym and add a side hustle. “Plants feel so good to be around, but it does go a little deeper,” Caroline said. “This is a symbiotic relationship we are playing with. Plants give off oxygen, we need oxygen; humans give off carbon dioxide, plants need carbon dioxide. It’s an experiment we are excited to see play out. I feel that it will be just as beneficial for the plants as it will be for all of us working out in the space.” GrowHouse Method hours are 6 a.m.-9 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Sunday. To learn more about personal training/classes and plant shopping, visit

A more traditionally focused gym, Training Camp, also opened recently, with a 10,000-square-foot “multi-functional fitness facility” at 400 Davidson St. Lightweight MMA title-holder Michael Chandler leads the Camp, and he and his team of “elite personal trainers” promise “first-class” equipment and tutelage, including mixed martial arts and amateur wrestling training. Personal training sessions start at $45, in addition to a host of other training options the gym offers. For more info or to sign up visit

More on the health and wellness front: Prenatal/postnatal yoga and barre studio Blooma Nashville partnered with East Nashville’s Well Body Pilates for Blooma East, which opened at 1000 Fatherland Ave., Ste. 201, in mid-June. The team-up grew out of neighborliness: Well Body, parked there on Fatherland since spring of 2016, recently added another location at 4304 Charlotte Ave., right near Blooma West at 4107 Charlotte. Blooma Nashville director Jennifer Derryberry Mann and Well Body owner Elizabeth Wilkinson got to know each other, and an idea sparked. “We’ve been thinking about a second location — well our mommas have been thinking about a second location — pretty much since the day we opened,” Derryberry Mann said in an announcement. “When the invitation came along (to team up with Well Body) . . . we were so excited and the only answer was ‘Yes.’” Yoga classes for pregnancy, postpartum, babies, and kids are already under way at Blooma East. More:

East Nashville Dental Co. also opened its doors this spring, at 815 Gallatin Ave., offering general, restorative and cosmetic dentistry (anything from checkups to whitening, crowns, and implants). The main doc at the new place: Dr. Lalita Nekkanti, who came East Nashville’s way via New Orleans, and who expressed a lot of excitement about her new work environs: “It’s such a fun and eclectic part of town,” Nekkanti told us. “. . . I love that East Nashville is made up of people from all over, each bringing their own unique flair to the neighborhood. East Nashville Dental Co. kicked off with limited hours — Tuesday and Thursday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. — but the aim is to expand that reach soon. More information can be found at

New non-profit “music incubator and coworking community” Helping Our Music Evolve, or H.O.M.E., recently launched nearby in East Nashville too, with an HQ located inside Center 615 at 615 Main St. They’re set up with space, tools and extras for folks working (or aspiring to work) in the music industry in Nashville — rooms for writing, rehearsing, recording, and performing, a production facility suited for video streaming and lots of programming, from workshops to mentoring sessions. “I have been working on this concept since January ’16, and envisioning exactly it would function,” H.O.M.E. founder and musician Logan Crowell said in a release. “But I honestly could not have imagined such a perfect location for the very first H.O.M.E. for music creators.” Memberships start at a thoroughly affordable $5 per month, and lower-level memberships don’t shut you out of the useful stuff — depending on your membership level, you’ll just have access to space and events at different rates. Looking for a place to create and collaborate? Learn more at

Fun changes over at East Nashville Vietnamese restaurant Far East Nashville: They’ve been in the process of expanding, taking over the adjacent former Bakery by frothy monkey space. (Those folks moved out in April. The work will mean expanded dining room space and a full bar, and once things are complete, new late-night hours too. They were hard at work at press time, and expecting to wrap in July, so these improvements may already be available to you at 1008 Fatherland St. To keep up with the latest Far East news, follow them on Instagram: @fareastnashville.

New beauty biz in Inglewood: Makeup artist Brandi Roe — who specializes in makeup for film/TV and events — launched Révéler Beauty at 935 East Trinity Lane #2 (at coworking/business hub Sparkworks Union). She’s offering in-studio or on-location makeup application, along with classes, lessons, personal shopping, and more, and she’s worked for the likes of Brenda Lee, Jeannie Seely, and Tanya Tucker. To check out Révéler services/book Roe, stop by

If things come together as planned, by the time these pages are in your hands, Dickerson- area East Nashvillians may already be frequenting a new coffee spot. At press time, Retrograde Coffee was working toward a July 16 opening at 1305 Dickerson Pike, just off Douglas Ave. The new biz comes to us from a crew of longtime East Nashvillians: Brothers Steve and Davey Mabee, and partner Nathan Weinberg, all of whom have roots in the local real-estate world, with development companies North by NorthEast Development and Greenline Partners and local firm MW Real Estate Co. The three aren’t hospitality newbies — Weinberg did a decade working with high-end hotels, and Davey Mabee brings a long run of barista years to Retrograde. Weinberg told us that “very high-quality” coffee was set for the Retrograde menu, alongside “creative specialty coffee drinks” and tea options from East Nashville’s High Garden. The vibe throughout, Weinberg said: comfortable, not imposing, with an emphasis on thoughtful, seasonal offerings, and an invitation to come and sit a spell. “Retrograde speaks to our intent to slow down a bit, even move backwards,” Weinberg said. “We want coffee to be savored, enjoyed one cup at a time and be evocative of other things.” Hours are set for 7 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. weekends. Find out more at

Retrograde has some new/old neighbors too: Good Wood Nashville — who’ve been outfitting Middle Tennessee with reclaimed wood for feature walls/floors/etc. and cool, hand-crafted furniture for years now — are picking up from Inglewood to move into 1307 Dickerson Pike. Owner Dave Puncochar told us that the new location came out of a desire to make their showroom easier to find (their longtime home sat tucked way back on West Kirkland), to make more room for their mix of dusty lumber and slick custom furniture, and to encourage new growth for the business. “We now offer modern lumber [and] modern design, as opposed to just rustic barnwood,” Puncochar said. “We believe that this move will pivot us for the future, as it gives us a modern look and allows us to mature as a business.” The new place gives Good Wood about 10 times the showroom square footage, and the team will be making good use of the extra elbow room, hosting woodworking classes and planning local pop-up events. As we were closing this issue, the new Good Wood showroom was just about complete and opening “soon.” Check in for the latest at

More coffee we expect to see East Nashvillians enjoying this summer: East Park Donuts & Coffee was eyeing a mid-July opening at 700 Main St., in the former Bagel Face Bakery space. As the name implies, donuts and coffee will be on the menu — media and marketing coordinator Kaleb Jones told us they’re working with specialty coffee and espresso beverages, a mix of donut options (brioche, old fashioned, gluten-free, and vegan plus a “rotating cast of specialty flavors”), and English muffin breakfast sandwiches for folks who prefer savory breakfast over sweet. This new business comes from established Nashville entrepreneurs: Carma and Ken Woodard, who also helm Berry Hill’s muchlauded Sam & Zoe’s. Their team is totally overhauling that once-stark space, adding a custom bakery kitchen and espresso bar, custom counters, and lots of new decor. Keep up with the latest goings on by following East Park on Instagram: @eastparkdonutsandcoffee.

Another opening we were expecting by the time this issue hits the streets: The new Riverside Village Clinic, aiming for a July 14 debut at 1406B McGavock Pike, right next door to Riverside Village Pharmacy. The Pharmacy folk are managing the new “local health hub,” with care offered by provider Jennifer Campbell PA-C, whose specialty is in functional medicine (nutrition, emotional well-being, hormone health, and more). They’re set to offer all kinds of general care needs, from physicals and vaccinations to women’s health care. More:

Relik Vintage hosted its grand opening at 943B Woodland St. in June, after taking over their space from Woodland Thrift, which wrapped its East Nashville run shortly before. Relik was already a bit of a fixture in the space, with owner Matt Blinco doing consignment sales inside Woodland. But these days, the space is almost all Relik, stocked with ’70s-through-’90s clothes and records Blinco finds “nostalgic, fashionable, fun.” He has longtime East Side ties, too, as a co-owner of local apparel company Project 615. “I just wanted to try a different kind of retail, and vintage clothing has been a passion of mine,” Blinco said. Shop hours are noon to 6 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m., Friday and Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. For more: Visit, and follow @relikvtg on Instagram.

The reason 943B Woodland is “almost” all Relik: Blinco’s also teamed up with multi-talented East Nashvillian Scot Sax to provide a new home for listening room The Kitchen. Previously housed inside Atomic Nashville, The Kitchen moved into the Relik space in June, again offering unplugged performances from lots of talented locals, meant to be intimate, engaging, and early. Being a music-loving dad to two young girls largely inspired the Kitchen concept, Sax told us. “[My wife Suzie Brown and I] felt bad that the girls never got to see any of the artists play around here, because all the shows are between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m.,” he said. “And we were frustrated too because we are absolutely wiped by 10 anyway. So when the opportunity arose to have a listening room I instantly thought: ‘Wait, this is how we can raise our girls on world-class live music that’s not too loud or too late.’” At press time, The Kitchen had Saturday shows scheduled through August, including visits from Korby Lenker, Amelia White, Molly Martin, and many others, with things kicking off at 6 p.m. sharp. To keep up with the latest, like The Kitchen on Facebook at

Another new business-inside-a-business: Wakeup Comics, which offers alternative, small-press, and indie comics, recently set up inside the Groove at 1103 Calvin Ave. If you’re into rising artists and upstart studios, they might have something that’ll intrigue you. Get a more specific sense of what they’re stocking by following them on Instagram: @wakeupcomics. Groove hours are Monday to Saturday 11 a.m.-8 p.m., Sunday noon to 6 p.m. Up the road in Inglewood, another East Nashville vintage name joins the proceedings: Anaconda Vintage — the work of “a local community of curators” — hosted its grand opening in June at 1062 East Trinity Lane. Anaconda stocks clothes, accessories and home goods, and they source their finds with help from some of Nashville’s more stylish residents, East Side singer-songwriters Emma Swift and Tristen included. Hours are 11 a.m.-7 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. on Sunday. More:


Local jewelry name Doxahlogy opted to go digital in late May, shuttering their shop at 700 Porter Road. “Our focus for the season ahead will be to travel, expand into new markets and make progress on some of our larger dreams,” a social media announcement said. They’d been sharing handmade men’s and women’s jewelry in that space since spring of 2016, and they’ll continue to share those creations at and on the Doxahlogy Instagram feed, @doxahlogy.


Among the higher-profile new additions to the neighborhood, right in 5 Points: Vandyke Bed & Beverage, a combination boutique hotel and bar/restaurant, in the works at 105 S. 11th St. That prime piece of East Nashville real estate was once home to the homey Edgefield Restaurant, and the brand-new three-story building there will include eight rooms on upper floors, and space to eat and drink on the ground level, plus an open-air courtyard. This project comes in part via longtime local Doug R. Martin, who’s also behind highly praised Germantown restaurant Geist. He told us we can expect some similarities — the popular Geist burger will likely show up on the Vandyke menu, and some staff members will cross over between the two businesses. Beyond, there’ll be “the same attempt to present a unique experience and zest for quality,” he said. The rooms are set to be high-design spaces, set “inline or below market rates,” Martin said, but the bar and courtyard won’t just be for guests in those rooms. Martin and partners are hoping to create a hang that’s open and appealing to locals, too. “We felt it essential to appeal to the senses and vibe with East Nashville,” Martin said, “with a focus on cocktails and beer with a limited but elevated bar food menu.” Latest update: Late summer opening for the rooms, with the bar coming either at the same time, or shortly thereafter.

Another big source of recent excitement for food-obsessed East Nashvillians: The folks behind East Nashville bar Duke’s are working on launching a new Korean restaurant at 1601 Riverside Drive, in the former Pied Piper Eatery space. Dukers Joey Plunket and Sara Nelson are teaming up with friends Tim and Danny Song, who lead Atlanta Korean restaurant Gaja, to make the new concept happen, and Nelson told us that the new place will indeed be all new. “This will be very much a third business — not a ‘second location’ of either of our other businesses,” she said. We’re still waiting on a name, but hopes are for a late-summer opening there. The space had been empty since February, when the Eatery ended its nearly 10-year run.

Even more food fun: Tacos Aurora, a busy local food truck, is aiming to open its first brick-and-mortar space at the Hunters Station compound on Main Street at North 10th Street. The Hunters project is styled as a food hall, with lots of concepts working in their own kitchens and sharing inside and outside seating. Coming from the Aurora kitchen: California-style tacos and related street food, from carne asada on fresh corn tortillas to elote (roasted corn). Something else transplanted West Coasters will likely wecome: fast-casual California-style burritos, and a cache of vegan offerings. Owner Arthur Orr is a native Californian who grew up in the restaurant business, and he told us he saw East Nashville as a perfect fit for his kind of food. “I just feel like there’s a lot of our culture there,” he said, “a lot of West Coast transplants, and just a cultured area.” Orr is hoping for a fall opening, and in the meantime, the Tacos Aurora truck is rolling around town. Keep up with where they’re at/restaurant news at

Noticing the hubbub over at the East Nashville Kroger at 711 Gallatin Ave.? Some insight into what’s in the works: Kroger corporate affairs told us that once their in-progress $9 million renovation/ expansion is complete, that store will be about 20,000 square feet larger, with new flooring, new checkout lanes, improvements to the storefront, landscaping, and decor, and expansion of the deli/bakery, natural foods section, meat/seafood department, and “adult beverage” area. One of the biggest changes: They’re aiming to add an in-store Starbucks, too. It’s set to feel like “really just a whole new shopping environment,” Kroger corporate affairs manager Melissa Eads told us. But be patient: Expected completion isn’t until summer of 2019.

If a Kroger overhaul isn’t enough excitement for you: The Nashville Business Journal reported in June that the East Bank might be getting an indoor skydiving place. Those folks found that iFLY, an Austin- based indoor skydiving company with locations all across the country, is eyeing a local spot near Topgolf ’s Cowan Street home. iFLY locations offer “the simulation of true freefall conditions in a vertical wind tunnel,” open to thrill-seekers from pre-K age to way past-K age. According to the Business Journal, we might get our chance to fly as soon as next year.

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