Husk Nashville Update: Hammers Are Swinging

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I just returned from a weekend at the Charleston Wine + Food Festival and just about everybody I ran into asked me about the impending opening of Husk Nashville. As in any building rehab project and restaurant opening process, the dates are still a little bit in flux. After a fairly aggressive demolition schedule, work has slowed as permitting and codes issues are making their way through the appropriate city departments.

But David Howard, the president of Neighborhood Dining Group, which owns and operates Husk, is optimistic. "Nashville has the most supportive and cooperative codes staff I've ever worked with," he says. The owners of the new building knew that they were dealing with a historic property that would require some special efforts to retrofit into their vision of Husk, and they wouldn't have it any other way.

While they have encountered some hiccups in the form of rotten window sills, substandard wiring, non-APDA compliant restrooms and "interesting" internal engineering of the building at 37 Rutledge that was constructed in 1882, not all the surprises have been bad. The history behind the Italianate structure is fascinating; it served as the home of a former mayor of Nashville in a neighborhood that was settled by descendants of Charlestonians who were the original South Carolina signers of the Declaration of Independence. It seems like the new outpost of Husk will sit smack dab in the middle of our little slice of Chucktown.

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While I was in the Holy City, I also had the chance to meet Morgan McGlone for the first time. Chef McGlone will be the Chef du Cuisine at Husk Nashville and is really excited about the opportunity. He's due to visit for the first time in a few weeks, and you won't be able to miss him if you see him out and about while he's getting the feel of his new neighborhood.

I also got to sample McGlone's food for the first time at a couple of tasting events during the festival, and I can tell you that I promised he can sleep in my spare bedroom if he needs a place to stay while he's here. The food is that good, so whatever speeds up the process. Until then, we'll all just have to wait. There's no firm opening date set, but if I had to guess what astrological sign the new restaurant would be, I'd say Taurus or a Gemini.

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