National Underground Burger and Nashville’s Honky Tonks

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The National Underground is now the Nashville Underground, expanded from 1600 square fee to 4,000 square feet. Read about it here.
National Underground Burger

As I was taking a walk down Broadway in the midst of all the famous honky tonks and hangs that draw the tourists and give Nashville it’s distinct music city personality,  I saw this sign for Nashville’s “best” burger. Of course, right down the street there is another sign claiming the same thing.

What’s going on here? I watched a couple eating  burgers on the patio and they were so huge, they were served with paper towels. I knew I was going back for dinner.

Owned by rockers, Gavin and Joey DeGraw, located at 105 Broadway, between Big River and our big river, The National Underground is a small place with an outdoor patio.  You may know Gavin from the music world or his recent turn on Dancing with the Stars where he was a contestant and performed his latest download worthy single, “Sweeter” They started their first and only other National Underground in New York City.  I, for one, am glad they came to Nashville.

The burger is cheesey and good tasting, bigger than it appears in the picture, and I like the way they do the potato-fries-chips thing.This is food made for a man or sharing.

I opted for the burger with salad (only because I really wanted salad). The only way this makes sense is if the meat is good.  The website claims the meat is organic and ground fresh on premises.

Nashville boasts a ton of good burgers joints.  Is this the best in Nashville? It’s in the running. It’s good, really good, seasoned so right, I never added any salt or pepper.   I questioned  Mr. DeGraw, the father, about being the “best” and he challenged me to come up with a spinach burger. I’m not sure how serious he was, but I aim to play with that idea.

Here’s what I like. If you’re downtown doing the honky tonk thing, you can run over to the National to get a burger after the bars close, as their kitchen is open until 3:00 a.m.

The Honky Tonks

It’s a good idea to check out the websites to see who is playing, if there is a cover or tickets for shows.

Robert’s Western World is the number one fan favorite in my circle and the place for two-stepping and bacon cheeseburgers. No cover  and you can even attend church service with gospel music there on Sunday mornings!

The Stage on Broadway If you ask a local where to go, if they don’t say Robert’s, they are likely to say the Stage.

 B.B.King’s, blues, soul, dancing, food, and a cover.

Legends Corner, another fan favorite.

Wildhorse Saloon Everyone I know has been there at least a few times and we even had a few dance lessons there a few years back.

Tootsies Orchid Lounge, legendary and world famous

Shop at Nashville Cowboy

Buffalo Billiards has 16 pool tables.

Layla’s Bluegrass Inn

Whiskey Bent Saloon

 Gruhn Guitars – George Gruhn is the quintessential expert in vintage guitar.

Jack’s Bar-B-Que We have a few noteworthy barbecue places. This is one of them.

The legendary Ryman Auditorium where we saw the Grand Ole Opry. Total retro country fun!

Honky Tonk Central

Betty Boots Discount Shopping

Mike’s Ice Cream (Get the red velvet and the maple bacon).

Tequila Cowboy Bar and Grill (formerly the Cadillac Ranch). This was the very cool venue for Podcamp.

Hatch Show Print is a legendary poster shop.

So tell me, have you been to the Nashville honky tonks and do you have a favorite bar or a favorite burger? I would love to add your favorite here.

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  1. In the mid 80s and 90s I was a musician and would go to Nashville a lot. There was a bar named “General Lee’s” next to Ernest Tubb record stores. It was closed for a long time and appeared to have had a fire. It was strange to look in the window and see everything. I always wondered what its history was. Does anybody remember this bar?

  2. That’s really interesting that Robert’s Western World honky tonk has two-stepping and performers who can’t do covers, and that they do Sunday church services there in the morning. My husband will be taking a trip to Nashville this summer so I was looking at what to do while there. I’ll have to tell him about visiting honky tonks and see which one he wants to go to.

  3. Great post Angela. As you may know I live within walking distance of all the places you mentioned in this post. My house in in Historic Germantown and is just a 10 minute walk away from all the famous/infamous places that make Nashville so very unique for tourist and us home-towners alike. Thanks for highlighting our vibrant downtown.

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