Firing Up the Nations!
January is always a tough month for me. Not only am I coming off my holiday hangover, but it's terribly cold and gloomy. To add fuel to the fire, many of my friends are striving to successfully achieve their new year resolutions which means- "No, we won't meet you after work for that glass of wine, we have to hit the gym! " Womp Womp. Trying to shake my winter funk, I decided to warm up at Nicky's Coal Fired.
Located in the heart of the Nations neighborhood, Nicky's Coal Fired is an Italian inspired restaurant offering a variety of coal-fired pizzas, house-made pastas and charcuterie that is sure to make you smile. Tony and Caroline Galzin, the husband and wife duo behind Fifty First Kitchen, have done a marvelous job restoring and incorporating the building's classic industrial elements into the restaurant. From the raw beams, the textured brick walls and high ceilings, no detail was left undone.
Tony Galzin has quite the reputation for his charcuterie (Nashvillians fawned all over his creations at Fifty First Kitchen). Without hesitation, I placed an order for the table. We had Salami Coto and Coppa. What charcuterie board would be complete without an assortment of cheese and olives.
Having our palates teased with this salty goodness, we decided it was time to up the ante and moved towards the house-made pasta. While all of the dishes piqued our interest, we chose the Pacherri Nero with little neck clams, ncf nduja & mollica. First I asked myself " what the heck is nduja?" I was simply clueless. For those of you who have never experienced nduja, beware, it packs quite a punch. Nduja is a soft sausage made of pork meat, fat salt and a LOT of red pepper. While I don't think this was at hot as what is typically found in Italy, it certainly warmed me up.
Focusing on the main attraction, we made our way down the menu to the coal fired pizzas. Nicky's offers a wide variety of pizzas having six red and six white options available. We were torn. SO MANY DELICIOUS OPTIONS. Honestly, I wish I could have tried them all. After much debate and guidance from our server, we opted for the Daily White Pie, which included shaved brussel sprouts, duck prosciutto, and mozzarella. Let's just say that not one slice was left. THAT GOOD!
What Italian feast would be complete without dessert! Our server brought the menu over, but after doing a little Instagram research, I knew what I wanted to order. Fernet & Coke.... and not just any coke, frozen coke. Can we say #adultslushy?
While we are talking about Fernet in all it's glory, I have to share the photo below. As soon as you walk in Nicky's, you see this adorable Fernet bicycle... Seriously y'all, I would consider biking to work if I had this in my garage!
Ending our meal on a high note, the affogato made it's way to our table. House-made salted caramel gelato topped with Barista Parlor espresso. TO DIE FOR! That's the way I need my espresso EVERY morning. Placed on the side was a lovely little cookie, very similar to shortbread, topped with an amarena cherry.
Nicky's Coal Fired is located at 5026 Centennial Boulevard, Nashville, Tennessee. You can check out their menu here. I would recommend making reservations as it was quite busy for a Thursday night. While I didn't have the chance, request seats at the pizza bar so you can see the Chef Galzin work his magic! Buon Appetito!