Text by Lindsay Landis
The food scene in Nashville has come a long way in the nearly eight years we’ve lived here, with new shops and restaurants popping up every month, so much so that I find myself having a hard time keeping up with all the hot new restaurants that have opened in the past year. While there’s no denying that the restaurants here put out some incredible desserts, if you’re just looking for something sweet to satisfy your cravings, here are our favorite sweet spots in our hometown, the Music City:
The Cupcake Collection
For those who like a straightforward and downright delicious cupcake that is moist and flavorful with a perfect (and reasonable) cake-to-frosting ratio, the Cupcake Collection is your place. I have yet to have a bad cupcake here, the original shop located in an adorable (and oh-so-purple) house in the historic Germantown neighborhood. At $1.50 a pop, the cupcakes here won’t break the bank either (so you may as well grab a few).
Goo Goo Shop
The original Goo Goo Cluster was the world’s first combination candy bar, invented way back in 1912 and still manufactured today by Standard Candy Company right here in Nashville. While you can’t visit the factory, the new downtown retail shop is a must-see, with an in-house kitchen and pastry chef who whips up new “Premium” Goo Goo Clusters daily (the shop is the only place to get these giant gourmet goo goos!) in crazy flavors like peanut butter pretzel, Nutella, and dark chocolate coconut. Not to mention the fabulous merchandise, which includes my personal favorite, the “What a Cluster!” tees and retro-design tea towels.
Goozy Dessert Bar & Cafe
From the owners of Christie Cookie, baking up moist and delicious cookies since 1983, Goozy brings to Nashville a much needed dessert café (there are plenty of restaurants that create amazing desserts, but if you JUST want dessert, your options are quite limited). Its menu is filled with sweet classics such as classic cremé brûlèe, croissant bread pudding, and three flavors of molten chocolate cake, but Goozy also offers a good selection of savory bites and sandwiches as well as an impressive drink menu including boozy milkshakes.
While I’d be hard-pressed to explain the difference between a plain old popsicle and a Mexican paleta, once you’ve tasted one at Las Paletas, there’s no going back. With dozens of ever-changing flavors such as hibiscus, grapefruit, avocado, and Mexican caramel, deciding which one you want is no easy task. Here’s an insider’s tip: you can get any paleta dipped in melted Olive & Sinclair chocolate (might I suggest the Mexican caramel with the chocolate dip? Out of this world. Trust me, you’ll thank me later.)
Olive & Sinclair
Nashville’s first and only bean-to-bar chocolate maker, Olive & Sinclair’s chocolate is stoneground from raw cacao beans and sweetened with brown sugar for an extra rich and robust flavor. The Salt & Pepper bar is a unique favorite of mine, as is their tangy Buttermilk White. They’ve recently expanded beyond just chocolate bars and are now offering brittle, caramels, truffles, and other sweet concoctions along with stylish merchandise in the East Nashville store.
Editor’s Note: Couple Lindsay and Taylor Landis blog as Love & Olive Oil from their home in Nashville, Tennessee, where they cook 5-6 times a week. On their blog yesterday, they made one of our classic archived recipes, so if you like chocolate and peanut butter, please check it out.