Cheat Meal of the Week: The Sutler Saloon

Joe Doino

I know a lot of people who refuse to go out to a restaurant by themselves.  I guess it’s an insecurity thing.  I can understand that but I think it’s kind of silly.  Think about the pro’s of going out to eat on your own for a second – you can look at the TV’s or your phone guilt free, no weird lull in conversation, no awkward dance when the bill arrives, you don’t have to deal with a snotty server who’s too lazy to separate checks, and there’s always at least one seat at the bar available if there aren’t any tables so seating is always flexible.  That last one is my favorite part…  I can just walk right in, scan the place, if there are no tables/booths available, I simply head over the bar and plop my ass down and eat myself into a coma.  I don’t know what was going on this week, but I had no such luck…

I’ve been meaning to stop into M.L. Rose because I’ve heard really good things about their burgers.  I live on the southeastern side of town so I headed over to the 8th Avenue location.  There were a decent amount of cars in the lot, but no biggie.  I walked in, saw the place was packed, glanced over the bar and there was nothing!  Not a single seat in the house.  Remarkably disappointed, I stepped outside to see what was around.  I got a great parking spot and the New Yorker in me was NOT going to give that up so easily.

I saw the big yellow sign of The SUTLER across the street.  I’ve heard some good things about that place so I headed over.  Lo and behold there are plenty of seats at the bar.

The vibe is really cool.  It’s got a speakeasy kinda thing going and I really dig it.  It’s dark, mysterious, ornate..  It looks like a really cool place to have a drink and listen to a kick ass band.

I looked at the menu and noticed they definitely have some interesting stuff.  The bartender highly recommended the smoked wings as an appetizer, and I went for the smoked brisket mac n’cheese for my entrée.

The wings were awesome, seasoned well and smoked.  The saltiness of the wings pair well with the sweet Alabama white sauce.

Smoked chicken wings

Sweet Alabama white dipping sauce

I wish I could say the same about the brisket mac n’ cheese.

Smoked brisket mac n’ cheese

The brisket itself was pretty good but the sauce wasn’t.  It was a bit too tangy for me.  It almost seemed to cut through the natural meat flavor and didn’t pair well with the mac and cheese at all, which was pretty bland to be honest.  I had to dump a bunch of salt on it to make it remotely interesting.

Aside from the wings, my experience was rather dull.  I was jonesing for a spicy burger and ended up with a subpar meal which is always frustrating.  I don’t want to take anything away from the bar though.  Like I mentioned earlier, the place is really cool.

Staircase ceiling lined with cowboy boots

The stage looks great, the stairwell downstairs is lined with discarded cowboy boots and even the bathrooms looked awesome.  I can pee in there for days and not feel bad about it.  If you’re gonna head that way, go for the drinks, atmosphere, music and the billiards.

Until next time…


I’m Joey, a New York drummer living in Nashville, playing with the band, Arc & Stones.

I LOVE FOOD! Right after college, I gained a lot of weight and hit a whopping 267 lbs. Terrified that I could hit 300 lbs before I hit 30 years, I decided to take control of the foods I was eating and started taking the fitness thing more seriously. I keep a very strict diet, making sure I hit my macronutrients (proteins, fats and carbs) each day. I hit the gym six days a week.

But once a week I cheat and treat myself. Food is one of my favorite things in life. This regime allows me to have my cheese-stuffed, deep-fried cake and eat it too. My column will focus on these indulgent treats.

About Joe Doino

Contributing Eater on AlphaLuxe web magazine View all posts by Joe Doino →

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