The Food Biz: Drugstore dining

Grays on Main in Franklin readies for debut [Updated with word of delay]

UPDATE: The Grays grand opening event has been pushed back a week to Aug. 4 due to a collapsed sewer line. Click here for more info.

 
More than a year ago, I reported that Andy Marshall of the Puckett’s family of restaurants had purchased the old Grays Drugstore building on Main Street in downtown Franklin, with plans to turn the old-time pharmacy into a modern restaurant with Southern-inspired cuisine.

That restaurant is called Grays on Main, and it’s poised for a grand opening July 28. The restaurant’s owners, Michael and Joni Cole, have spent 15 months restoring the “dilapidated” 19th century property. And the project has now expanded to three stories, including not just the restaurant, but a music hall on the second floor and a private supper club on the third.

Kenneth Jenkins is the chef, and here’s how his menu is described: “Offerings place a modern emphasis on Southern culinary traditions through clean, complex profiles that represent roots from the Appalachian mountains to the low-country Carolinas.”

Beverage director Jon Yeager promises “vintage epicurean spirits that complement the kitchen’s seasonal pairings.”

To accommodate the grand opening party, 7 to 10 p.m. July 28, the street will be closed from Public Square to Fourth Avenue, with Grays offering tours, tastes and live music. The vintage neon Grays sign, a downtown Franklin landmark for decades, will get a ceremonial lighting once darkness falls.

Grays on Main is at 332 Main St. For updates check out facebook.com/graysfranklin.

 
• A new bakery is opening soon in East Nashville, and hearing about it may expand your vocabulary. It’s called Yeast Nashville, and its specialty is the kolache, a Czech-born pastry that’s been especially embraced in Texas.

Bill and Sara LaViolette came to Nashville from Houston, where Sara says there are kolaches on every corner. Missing their favorite snack, the couple decided to open Yeast Nashville at Eighth and Woodland streets, kitty-corner from the East Park softball fields. Kolaches can be sweet — filled with fruit or cream cheese like a Danish — or savory. Texans tend to fill them with Texan things like jalapenos, sausage and cheese. Yeast Nashville plans to serve all kinds.

The bakery will open at 7 a.m. to serve the breakfast crowd; later in the day, they’ll bring out their freshly baked loaves of bread, including white and wheat loaves and a few specialties like pretzel rolls and artisan bread that’s baked with beer.

The LaViolettes hope to open in the next couple of weeks. Hours are still being worked out, but Sara says they’ll definitely be open six days a week, Wednesday through Monday (closed on Tuesdays).

Yeast Nashville will open soon at 805 Woodland St., suite 300. Watch for updates on Facebook or @YeastNashville on Twitter.

 
• Pastry’s busting out all over! This week marked the inaugural run of the Music City Pie Co. food truck.

It’s the project of Hunter Briley, who worked for many years for Hard Rock Cafe, training employees all over the world. While in Australia, he saw folks standing in line for traditional meat pies; he tried one and fell in love.

When he decided to start his own business, he says he thought of the little pies as the perfect portable food.

Music City Pie Co. does both sweet and savory pies. The selection will rotate, but when I stopped by, the menu included the Meat N’ Three, which looks like a little pot pie stuffed with shredded beef, brown gravy and three veggies.

Also popular is the Drunk Lil Piggy Pie, which features pulled pork, bacon-and-white-bean gravy and a drizzle of tomato-whiskey sauce.

The savory pies are $8, and the mini dessert pies are $2 or three for $5. I got to try cherry pie with lattice crust, a lemon curd pie and a chocolate cream pie. Briley says he makes everything from scratch — including the flaky, delicious pie crust, and uses local meat and seasonal ingredients.

Follow the truck at Music City Pie Co. on Facebook or @MusicCityPieCo on Twitter.