One more chance for BBQ before leaving Tennessee. J and I got up just before lunch time in Nashville. Our next stop was four hours away in Indianapolis where we were going to spend the night before going apartment hunting in Kalamazoo. It seemed like a good stopping point.
One of my “must see” stops was a BBQ joint in Nolensville, TN. I thought it was north of Nashville but it actually ended up being a half hour south. I was ready to just skip it, but J talked me into it. We were in no hurry to get to Indy, so why not get one more good meal before heading home.
Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint is one of Nashville’s best. It’s on Nolensville Road just outside of Nolensville, TN. I actually heard about this place from the same Bon Apetit article that raved about Slow’s and Zingerman’s Roadhouse.
I’m not sure what I was expecting, but what I found was not it. For some odd reason, I was under the impression this was going to be more of a sit down restaurant. What we found was a small, neighborhood BBQ joint.
We made it to Nolensville a little after 12:30. The parking lot was packed. There were a bunch of construction vehicles and we pulled in behind two county cop cars. When the local trades and cops eat at a place, you know it’s a good sign.
There is a porch area with a few tables that were full. Combine that with the number of cars and thought we might be in trouble.
The inside wasn’t much bigger. It was filled with cheap tables topped with red and white checkerboard tablecloths. The walls and ceiling are unfinished and decorated with old license plates and posters. It’s not a sit down restaurant like I assumed. There’s an order counter cut out in the back wall. The line went all the way through the restaurant but most of them must have been take out.
We couldn’t find a menu anywhere, but someone had left a carry out menu on the table, so we picked that up to look at it. They had something called a “Brisket Taco,” but it’s so hard to pass up pulled pork. Once we got to the front of the line, we put in our order for two pulled pork sandwiches and fries. They have a couple different BBQ sauce options. J went with the Sweet Dixie Mild. I chose the Pit Master’s Red.
Our bill, with a Pepsi and a Sweet Tea, was just over $17 which surprised both of us again. For such a highly popular place, we expected it to be more.
We got our drinks then sat down and waited for our number to be called. Microphones must be a thing in the south because the guy taking orders doubled as the guy who called out numbers. It was only a five minute or so wait.
The sandwiches were served already sauced, but not a lot of sauce. We actually found, after taking a bite, that we liked the other sauce better so we swapped sandwiches. J usually depends on sauce for her pulled pork, but this time she actually liked the meat. Not only like the meat, but loved it. She called it the best pulled pork she ever had. I agree. It was really good. The meat was so tender and juicy. The fries that came with it were just as delicious as the pulled pork. This is easily one of the best BBQ meals we have ever had.
Martin’s was more than worth the detour. It’s not really near any major roads, so you do have to take two lane highways to get to Nolensville, but you will be rewarded with some of the best BBQ Nashville has to offer.