East Nashville

Establishment neighborhood
747 Douglas Ave., East Nashville
Kisser chefs and owners (and married couple) Brian Lea and Leina Horii spent a couple years road-testing recipes at farmers markets and restaurant pop-ups—including a series at The Patterson House and one at Bastion—before opening as a brick-and-mortar in 2023. The result is a concise menu of only good stuff; standouts include the chicken katsu sandwich and Japanese breakfast. It’s hot ticket, a small space, and walk-in only. And it’s only open for lunch, only four days a week—arrive before opening to avoid a longer wait. Kisser was shortlisted for the James Beard Foundation’s Best New Restaurant award in 2024.
823 Meridian St., East Nashville
Chef Philip Krajeck (of Rolf & Daughters) opened Folk in McFerrin Park, an up-and-coming area of East Nashville that’s currently booming. First impressions are striking, with an interior that features custom artwork from local artists Alex Lockwood and Paul Collins, exposed brick walls, and plenty of light wood accents and potted greenery for that indoor-outdoor effect. As for the food, you can’t go wrong with one of the wood-fired pizzas, which are topped with ingredients like kale, fermented potato, pickled chilis, and preserved peppers.
Cafe Roze
1115 Porter Rd., East Nashville
Our favorite breakfast spot in the city is found in East Nashville, at Cafe Roze. Grab a seat at the long marble bar and settle in for a crazy good avocado shake (made with kale, banana, almond milk, and bee pollen) before a bowl of savory oats, served with a poached egg, mustard greens, and roasted shiitake mushrooms. The space itself is light-filled and cheerful, and it’s an ideal place to start the day (or for lunch, dinner and cocktails, too).
Lemon Laine
1900 Eastland Ave., East Nashville
Given our loyalty to nontoxic skin care and makeup, it's only natural that we love a beauty boutique that checks off certain boxes: clean and luxurious products, transparent labeling, and a great overall message. So when Lemon Laine—a modern beauty boutique with an ethos that revolves around natural, effective, and sustainable products—opened in one of our favorite cities, we were instant fans. Owner Laura Lemon brings her decade's worth of beauty industry experience to the shop, in which she stocks some of our favorites, including Kjaer Weis, True Botanicals, and our very own goop skincare. Best yet: The design is clean with bright color—and there's an oil bar where you can mix bespoke beauty formulas to meet your specific skin needs. Photos: Caroline Sharpnack.
411 Gallatin Ave., East Nashville
There was a little bit of a local panic when beloved East Nashville dive bar Dino's changed hands in 2015, as locals feared the ages-old joint would lose its original charm. But the revamp (besides making the bathrooms significantly nicer) hasn't changed much at all. The brick facade and Coca-Cola sign on the exterior are still intact, as is the casual menu and the famous, classic diner burger. As always, the menu is cheap and the bar is beer-only.