While it might look like a sleepy town, Franklin, Tennessee, is actually rife with history, beginning with its name. Founded in 1799 by Abram Maury, Franklin is named after one of America’s founding fathers, the great Benjamin Franklin. Its historic Main Street was also designated as a Great American Main Street in 1995 by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. With its rich history and colorful culture, it’s no surprise there are many good restaurants in Franklin, TN. If you’re planning to drop by this charming town, check out these top restaurants in Franklin, TN.
Best known for its delectable baked goods, Merridee’s Breadbasket has been a local favorite since 1984. Staying true to the tradition established by founder Merridee McCray, all of the baked goods featured in its menu and displays are made from scratch every morning. Aside from the menu staples, this homey bakery and restaurant also features some delightful seasonal specials. Though it’s a top breakfast destination, Merridee’s lunch menu also has a delicious array of hot and cold sandwiches best paired with their classic soups.
Opened in 2006, Red Pony at McConnell House may seem like one of the new restaurants in Franklin, TN, but it sits right at the historic McConnell House a few blocks away from Main Street. This elegant restaurant is owned and operated by executive chef Jason McConnell, whose menu reflects his love for sophisticated Southern foods and his travels. The menu changes about six times a year based on the seasons, making Red Pony a must-visit if you want a great dining experience.
Formerly occupied by a pharmacy, three-story Gray’s on Main is located in a carefully restored Victorian-era building in historic downtown Franklin. The rustic-chic decor sets an atmosphere that’s as hearty as its Southern menu, which honors Tennessee’s culinary heritage with a modern twist. Some favorites include fried pimento cheese balls, fish and grits, and fried chicken, which can all be enjoyed to the sound of live soulful music during weekends. It’s definitely one of the unique restaurants in Franklin, TN, that you should visit if you want to immerse yourself in the local culture.
Named after the town’s founding year, 1799 offers modern American cuisine that’s primarily influenced by Southern favorites. Buttery cuts of beef and game, Creole dishes, and other options such as whipped feta, buttermilk fried quail, and lobster mac and cheese are just some of the delicious meals you can enjoy in this restaurant. Located at the Harpeth Hotel, 1799 makes for an amazing date-night destination for couples — or just about anyone who wants to enjoy its sumptuous offerings.
Well loved by both locals and tourists, the Franklin Mercantile Deli is a go-to place for anyone who wants to satisfy their cravings for comfort food. Homemade desserts, specialty sandwiches, fruit tea, coffee, and a fresh salad bar are just some of the treats you can enjoy when you dine in the Merc. What really keeps people coming back for more are its creamy parmesan cheese grits. It’s no wonder Franklin Mercantile Deli is one of the treasured restaurants in Franklin, TN, with its relaxing atmosphere and attentive staff.