Sunday, February 4, 2018

Franklin is for Friends




This post has been in the works for too long. In November, before Thanksgiving, we had the opportunity to go back to Franklin with our friends, Merri, Walt, Dede and Larry, to the Made South Holiday Market, for a little Christmas shopping. But, before I could get the details of the trip posted, Thanksgiving, the Iron Bowl, Jingle Bell Square, Christmas, boys and their friends home for the holidays, the New Year, a child going back to college, a child moving to Ohio for an internship, getting snowed in in Gatlinburg, a scrapbooking weekend with my girls, and an ADA weekend in Birmingham all colluded to keep me from writing. It has truly been a whirlwind since we spent this relaxing weekend in Franklin. Now, while there is a lull in the storm, before we get going again with a trip to Savannah, an Eagle's concert, a child moving home from Ohio, another trip to Savannah, Easter, a bridesmaid's luncheon, and a wedding, I'm ready to reminisce about this fun weekend with friends. 

We started the weekend by meeting at The Factory in Franklin for the Made South Holiday Market. Since this was the second Made South show for Scott and me, we knew what to expect and how to navigate the show. 

For instance, I remembered the delicious Baked in Nashville macarons I had gotten at the show in June, so I made a beeline to Baked in Nashville's booth and scored a box of those delicious cookies. Oh, my gosh! They are so good!


We realized there would be lots of food to sample, from chef prepared seafood to butters, breads, sauces, desserts and drinks. We had to be careful, knowing that we had dinner reservations at Gray's on Main after the show. 


I scored some more delicious flavored butter from Wise Butter. That lemon rosemary is da bomb on roast chicken!


We couldn't resist this Moroccan marinade and rub from Mod Squad Martha.



Our gift theme this Christmas was music, so I was thrilled to find this ornament and some earrings and a bracelet made from guitar strings by Southern Strings. The company is the brainchild of Crystal Jahnig, the wife of bass guitarist, Morgan Jahnig, from Old Crow Medicine Show. She uses his old guitar strings and crafts beautiful jewelry and ornaments. I was so excited by this find!

We all loved the spiced nuts from Molly and Me, delicious rice from Delta Blues Rice, and jams and jellies from One Screw Loose.

Alabama was well represented, too. Piper and Leaf Teas. Alabama Sweet Tea Company, Redland Cotton, Sweet Auburn Studio, and John Emerald Distilling Company were among the vendors from the Yellowhammer State.

Dede, Merri and I couldn't pass up a chance to have our picture made with Fauxest Gump before we left The Factory.




After all the shopping, we left the market with our shopping bags and free jars of Duke's Mayonnaise in hand, not as hungry as we wanted to be, and headed to Gray's on Main. Gray's on Main is super cool because it is in an old pharmacy. The 1876, three-story Victorian building has been lovingly restored and is a great backdrop for not only the delicious food coming from the kitchen, but the cocktails being crafted at the bar. Gray's on Main is the only brandy bar in America. 


Merri and I decided to share a few appetizers, rather than order full entrees. Our choices included a grilled pear pizza,



fried pimento cheese balls with moonshine pepper jelly,


and bacon-wrapped figs.


They were all delicious, but those pimento cheese balls...YUM!

Dede and Larry shared a salad and the pear pizza. Scott had this thick cider-brined Duroc pork chop with braised red cabbage and apple chestnut conserve.



Walt chose a Caesar salad with pretty watermelon radish and


a brown sugar and bourbon salmon with cucumber yogurt, red quinoa and broccolini.



We couldn't resist sharing a couple of desserts. This banana pudding was a fan favorite!


And this dark chocolate Belgian brownie with chocolate peanut butter ice cream drew rave reviews, as well.


Walt and I ventured upstairs to check out the rest of Gray's on Main. On the second floor there was a stage for bands. We were stopped before we could mosey on up to the third floor. Apparently there was a private event going on up there and no amount of sweet talking was getting us up those stairs. 


We left Gray's on Main and made plans for the next day before leaving for our hotel rooms for the night. The plan was to do a little shopping downtown before meeting for lunch at Puckett's Grocery. When Dede, Merri and I finally made it to Puckett's, the guys were waiting on us. I have to say, of all my friends, Walt truly embraces this whole blogging thing the most. He is the best at staging a shot, is totally on board with ordering a variety of dishes and always reminds everyone to let me get a picture of their food. If only all my friends were as helpful!

Here is Walt doing his best Vanna White to showcase Puckett's daily menu.



Our entrees included this Nashville hot chicken sandwich for Scott. Luckily, I suggested he get the hot sauce on the side. He is super wimpy when it comes to spicy hot dishes. He was very glad the sauce was not all over his sandwich once he tasted it. 


I got a perfectly cooked catfish filet sandwich with yummy sweet potato fries. The filet was huge!


Walt got a pretty meat and three with brisket, lima beans, squash casserole and coleslaw. 


I think Merri had the fried green tomato BLT that Julie had on an earlier visit. And Larry and Dede shared a field greens salad with strawberries, feta, walnuts and a raspberry vinaigrette.

We all shared this amazing pecan cobbler with homemade vanilla ice cream. It was divine!




It was a fun weekend. Franklin never disappoints and Franklin with friends is the best ever!
Three Friends and a Fork and this fun group of friends give Made South, Gray's on Main and 
Puckett's Grocery  
3 Happy Yums UP!















Richi Reynolds
Richi Reynolds

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