Loveless Cafe

Chicken Dinner | Ham House | Meat-and-Three | Small Town Café
One of the best

The Loveless Cafe, attached to the Loveless Motel on the highway west of Nashville, is true country: wood-paneled walls, red-checked tablecloths, waitresses with sweet mountain accents, and out-of-this-world downhome vittles.

For many years it was a favorite haunt of Grand Ol’ Opry performers, whose pictures line the walls, and whose tour buses frequently could be seen parked towards the back of the lot. Since we first wrote about it several decades ago, the Loveless has gotten reams of media attention; but we are happy to say that national renown has not spoiled it. Yes, there are Loveless souvenirs to buy, including a fancy print of the cafe and motel (suitable for framing); but here you still will find some of the best fried chicken and country ham for miles around, plus dreamy peach, blackberry, and strawberry preserves.

Those preserves (which are available by mail) are reason enough to celebrate the Loveless. Peach is the color of a summer sunset, sweet and deeply fruity, just perfect in conjunction with a faintly sour biscuit. The blackberry is more tart: wonderful on biscuits or toast or waffles, or on ice cream, or (we confess) spooned straight from the jar.

Ham is the pride of the Loveless kitchen: It is country ham, slow cured and salty, fried on a griddle until its rim of fat turns translucent amber and the coral pink meat gets speckled sandy brown. It comes sandwiched into biscuits or on a plate with red-eye gravy for dipping, cream gravy, sorghum molasses, honey, and bowls full of each of the preserves. What delirious fun it is to permutate all these good things: dip the biscuits, spread the sorghum, make little sandwiches with ham. Best of all are the secret-recipe buttermilk biscuits — fresh, warm, flavorful, and the perfect companion for any country meal.

Now under new ownership, the Loveless is better than ever. All the traditional dishes remain; and to them have been added a fuller menu that includes barbecue and smoked pork, a green-tomato BLT, and a stupendous dessert menu.

What to Eat
Loveless Cafe, Ham
Heaven in mid-Tennessee: a Loveless Cafe ham breakfast. The small cup atop the country ham holds red-eye gravy. Those are grits to its right, fried eggs, tomato, and biscuits in the back. And behind the plate is a dish of blackberry preserves.
Loveless Cafe, Fried Chicken
Fried Chicken
Family-style fried chicken dinner. Not included in photo: side dishes such as hashbrown casserole, greens, mac & cheese, etc.
Loveless Cafe, Banana Pudding
Banana Pudding
The Loveless never used to serve dessert. Now it serves some of the best anywhere. This is banana pudding.
Loveless Cafe, Biscuits
If you can't get enough of the Loveless Café biscuits, they offer the pimento cheese, fried green tomato combination.
Loveless Cafe, Ham Biscuits
Ham Biscuits
An unimproveable combination of two of the signature foods of the South.
Loveless Cafe, Hashbrown Casserole
Hashbrown Casserole
Fried chicken, with mashed potatoes and the hashbrown casserole on the lower left next to the chicken.
Loveless Cafe, Biscuits and Gravy
Biscuits and Gravy
Tender biscuits, with gravy that has just enough of a hint of pepper.
Loveless Cafe, Chess Pie
Chess Pie
The Dixie classic: chess pie
Loveless Cafe, Chicken ‘N’ Dumplings
Chicken ‘N’ Dumplings
Not a regular on the menu, but if they have chicken and dumplings as a special, it's a must!
Directions and Hours
open now
Sunday7am - 9pm
Monday7am - 9pm
Tuesday7am - 9pm
Wednesday7am - 9pm
Thursday7am - 9pm
Friday7am - 9pm
Saturday7am - 9pm
This restaurant is featured in the following eating tours.
8 stops | 1124 MILES | 17 hr 35 min

It would be crazy to travel through the South and eat only banana pudding, but every place that serves it at its best precedes it with an excellent well-rounded meal, whether barbecue, meat-and-three, or cafeteria cornucopia. So, while every meal on this tour ends with four-star banana pudding, the variety of what comes before and…

5 stops | 39 MILES | 1 hr 14 min

After many happy weeks eating our way around Nashville. we've created a one-day eating plan that presents you with the best of the best: five fantastic meals in memorable eateries that will be the highlight of any visit. Don't be discouraged by the line of customers waiting to get in the Pancake Pantry. It moves…

Open Year Round
Meals Served
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Credit Cards Accepted
Alcohol Served
Outdoor Seating

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