Nashville lacks for nothing when it comes to entertainment and drinking options across the city, much of the tourist energy drawn to Broadway and its related, polished offerings. But there are dive bar gems throughout the city that provide an important, consistent counterpoint to Nashville’s more tourist-focused offerings, a reflection of the city’s more authentic underbelly.
is one of the city’s best examples, a dive bar that exists inside of a double-wide trailer that once served as an actual construction trailer for homes erected nearby. As the same suggests, Christmas comes every day at Santa’s Pub, though the name comes from a nickname given to the bar’s owner by his grandson thanks to an entertaining resemblance to the man himself.
Nashville also plays home to the oldest continuously operating bar in the state, founded in 1896 and operated under various names, it exists as Springwater Supper Club
today. The bar is reported to have been open for the Tennessee Centennial and International Exposition in 1897, ultimately serving both Al Capone and the Black Keys on either end of its considerable historic spectrum.
From a double wide to the oldest bar in the state to Dino’s Bar
, Nashville’s diner dive bar king, home to a burger so well received that Anthony Bourdain was drawn to give it a shot (his review was positive). The vibe inside is very much small diner counter surrounded by divey mismatched seating, the perfect diner-dive combo.
And these are just a few of the glimpses of the real Nashville that can be seen throughout the city, bits of resistance to redevelopment that has taken advantage of a touristy influx to the city over the past handful of decades. All are worth seeking out to rebalance a view of one of America’s great drinking cities.