Seasonal, comfortable and steeped in tradition
The new seasonal menu at TerraMáe Appalachian Bistro reflects owner Mark Oldham’s dedication to offering his guests comfort foods steeped in tradition. An emphasis on fresh seasonal ingredients means frequent changes to the menu that can make dining at the restaurant a deliciously serendipitous experience.
The Warm Kilt Cabbage Salad, for example, combines fresh greens charred in a cast-iron skillet with beene seed bacon and a dressing of black-eyed pea vinaigrette.
“It is a very classic flavor combination that pairs beautifully,” explained Executive Chef Shelley Cooper. “To round that dish out, we have pimento cheese cornbread crouton. When you eat beans, you eat cornbread. Guests who order that dish are very pleasantly surprised with the taste. It is cooked very quickly in the cast iron and isn’t stewed or braised down the way cabbage normally is, so it has a lighter texture.”
Farm-to-Table rules the day at TerraMáe as ingredients, harvested at the peak of flavor, are chosen based on local availability and prepared with care. At present, they are serving a plethora of vegetables from places such as Gratitude Farms in Alabama.
“I’m loving these new greens that we’ve got in,” Cooper said. TerraMae’s seasonal vegetable platter includes wild rice stuffed red pepper, roasted artichoke heart, truffled cauliflower steak, sautéed seasonal veggies, and spaghetti squash gratin.
Mark and Sharon Oldham, who also own the StoneFort Inn where TerraMáe is located downtown, have operated a farm near Nashville to grow many of the foods used in the kitchen and bar. Other items are sourced locally as well for better-tasting meals.
Adding ingredients as they become available means the menus change often at TerraMáe, but some of the items diners are likely to find available right now include Braised Rabbit and Rosemary Biscuits, Roasted Duck Breast, Wild Striped Bass and Prawn, Crab and Corn Rainbow Trout, Painted Hills Beef Tenderloin, Bacon-Wrapped Scallops, Seafood Chowder, Crispy Veal Sweetbreads, Butter Poached Shrimp and Crispy Pork Belly, Beef Short Ribs Pot Roast, Heritage Pork Osso Bucco, and 20-ounce Heritage Angus Cowboy Cut Ribeye.
While the menu is always changing, the chefs gradually add new selections to it to give servers a chance to learn about the dishes so they can recommend items. The recent addition of Manager Brent Tate translates into a focus on all-around excellence.
The TerraMáe process gives dining guests frequent opportunities to discover new culinary fare to fall in love with, but the popular Appalachian Lunchable (a heavenly combination of deviled eggs, pickled shrimp, beene seed bacon, blue cheese pimento spread, rosemary biscuits, Tennessee country ham, and pickled vegetables) is typically on the menu for those who prefer a side of predictable. For those who truly savor surprises, earlier this year TerraMáe began serving family-style meals on Monday nights and choosing a different theme and dishes each week.
TerraMáe pays homage to the essence of familiar foods, but this kitchen is not constrained by convention. They add dashes of flavor and component combinations, often coordinating meal and wine pairings to highlight the appeal of particular foods.
To make a reservation, visit their website and book via OpenTable.
TerraMáe Appalachian Bistro
Farm-to-table regional cuisine & craft cocktails
122 E 10th St.