1896 Eastland Ave.
Nashville, TN 37206
websiteIt’s amazing to watch the revival of East Nashville; this neighborhood has paved the way for a lot of young people and energy to build a once depressed area of the fast-changing city. In that world, The Wild Cow is one of the hot progressive concepts that has thrived in the city. This vegetarian-focused restaurant makes use of the most creative ingredients and non-meat options to produce great cuisine. It’s a difficult prospect to make such a restaurant thrive in the suburbs, but Nashville supports concepts like this one well.
The menu makes extensive use of non-meat options — black beans, soy-based alternatives like tempeh, or wheat gluten-based creations like seitan — to fill out great bar fare. Here are some of the menu items I really enjoyed:
- Chipotle seitan tacos: The base ingredient, seitan, is spiced with something akin to corriander and served atop brown rice, spinach, carrots, tomato and some ranch drizzled on top.
- Peanut tempeh tacos: These tacos are topped with a peanut sauce and sesame that gives a little character to the otherwise more bland tempeh. Kale, of all things, is great to top these tacos.
- Black bean and rice tacos: Salsa and avocado give a bit of character to the tacos, though they aren’t as good as the others I tried. Might have something to do with the sour cream and cheese substitutes, which could be more creatively re-imagined.
- Veggie burger: A burger with black beans made one of three ways, ‘California’ with sprouts and a ranch, ‘Picnic’ with pineapple slaw and barbecue sauce, and ‘Animal’ with thousand island dressing, onions and a spicy mustard. Great all told.
The spot is fantastic, but there will be a longer wait here, no matter how you cut it. On busyier hours you might be expected to wait 45 minutes to an hour, and small groups are a must, as they’ll inevitably be broken down into more manageable groups for service.
All told, the spot is one where you can enjoy a lot of kinds of food cooked vegetarian, and still really enjoyable. It’s a very creative concept that seems to thrive in the East Nashville neighborhood, and while you may find yourself waiting a bit longer than otherwise, and the price points are a bit elevated, in all, it is still worth the experience.
- The spot is one where you can expect to wait, but it’s still very much worth the experience. Just expect to spend a longer time here.
- Sweets and desserts are provided via next door Jeni’s Ice Creams as well as vegan bakery Kahn’s Desserts down the street.
- The taco platters tend to be the most popular, with an option to let you mix and match which kinds you end up with.