Step aside, Oregon. Like Retrograde Coffee, Portland Brew is another new spot to hit the rising Nashville coffeehouse scene. With two locations, one in East Nashville and the other in the south, coffee aficionados will have plenty of fuel for their fire (or roast).
The best part of the 12 South experience is the balcony overlooking the street. Visitors can choose from comfy couches and fluffy chairs, or the counter-style bar stools that perch over the sidewalk, perfect for people watching.
The 12 South location is one of several that have arrived on the Nashville coffee scene in recent years. After feeling inspired by the Portland, Oregon, network of neighborhood coffee shops, Brandon and Tracy Stakelbeck opened their first location in Sylvan Park in 1999. In 2003, they opened the 12 South location, and then several years later in 2006, the Eastland Avenue location became operational. After the Sylvan Park building sold in 2009, that location closed. Now Nashville is home to two Portland Brews, one on 12 South and the second on Eastland Avenue.
Locals are taking notice to all the coffeeshops popping up throughout their city in recent years, but Portland Brew continues to hit the spot. Well-roasted beans and expertly pulled shots of espresso are memorable, like a good song. Coffee and music are two things that Nashville does right. The beverage menu includes the classics, like your standard latte, cappuccino, or Americano, with additional options to soothe your sweet tooth, such as the Rainforest mocha or the Carmel Creme.
A message to all the fans of the animals out there: they have recently added some vegan and vegetarian options to their menu. The Ruby, which is a vegan seitan sandwich, scores high marks. For those who can’t quite part ways with dairy, you can’t go wrong with a simple grilled cheese and a bowl of squash soup. Although simple and conservative, even the breakfast menu caters to a diverse palate. The vegan quinoa seitan sausage is from BE-Hive, a local company that specializes in providing options for an exclusively plant-based diet. It’s a small world here, folks. Eat responsibly.
Cover image credit: Janko Ferlic on Pexels.