The Continental, located at the Grand Hyatt Nashville hotel in the Nashville Yards development, opened its doors for dinner service on Friday, May 28. Led by Chef Sean Brock, The Continental melds Brock’s passion for American culinary history with his reverence for the traditional elegance of hotel dining to create an unparalleled experience in the heart of downtown Nashville.
Inspired by the unique history of American restaurants and hotels throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries, The Continental is Brock’s exploration of contemporary cuisine, breathing new life into what fine dining looks like into today’s world. Guided by the creativity and service traditions of this era, the experience is lively and celebratory, featuring tableside cart service, seasonally focused cuisine, and gracious hospitality.
“The idea behind this restaurant is to embrace and be inspired by the original great American hotel restaurants and to invigorate the spirit of those historic dishes in a new way,” Brock says. “Over the past year during the pandemic, we’ve been craving the restaurant experience that makes us feel excited and taken care of. We want to remind everyone what makes going out to eat so enjoyable and exhilarating. This is fine dining turned fun dining!”
On the Menu
The Continental’s menu is heavily influenced by the historic fine dining of American hotels, and features reinterpretations of classics with an emphasis on seasonality. In the development of the concept, Brock intensely studied classic cookbooks from the 1800s and early 1900s, finding himself especially taken to these chefs’ creative and radical approaches to new dishes, as well the French Nouvelle style of cooking, which focuses on vibrancy and presentation.
In line with this Nouvelle approach and the importance of plating, Brock was inspired by modern art, including the restaurant’s location just across from Nashville’s Frist Art Museum. Custom tableside carts, made by local artisan Aberdeen Studio, serve signature dishes such as The Continental Prime Rib (Horseradish Cream, Natural Jus, priced per ounce) and Vanilla Bean Custard Cream Cart Service with a selection of shaved ices and toppings. The menu has four parts – meat & seafood; raw, chilled, & marinated; vegetables & grains; and desserts – each featuring innovative, yet refined dishes made with Brock’s signature commitment to sourcing only the best products.
Other menu standouts include raw, chilled, & marinated dishes such as a Lettuce Vichyssoise (Kohlrabi, Crème Fraiche, Trout Roe), Pâté en Croûte served tableside (Selection of Pâté, Port Wine Geleé, Onion Compote, Gooseberry Catsup), and a Pacific Red Crab Parfait (Brioche, Green Tomato, Lovage, Boiled Egg); vegetables & grains such as The Continental Salad (Pickled Spring Onion, Alligator Pear, Fines Herbs), Anson Mills Farro Verde (Watercress, Walden Cheese), and Black Pepper & Honey Parker House Rolls with House Cultured Butter; entrees including Broken Arrow Ranch Venison (White Asparagus, Iberico Lardo, Sauce Roanne), and Maine Diver Scallops (Marcona Almond and English Peas); and desserts from Pastry Chefs Keaton Vasek and Michael Werrell including Greutli Cheese Fondu (Soft Pretzels, Carrot Mustard, Sour Ramps) and Strawberry & Carolina Gold Rice (Rice Cream, Liquid Shortbread, Stawberry Hibiscus Syrup).
A Statement Space
Designed by Nick Dryden of DAAD, the dining room at The Continental complements the cuisine as an ode to American hotel fine dining in the Gilded Age with a decidedly modern twist. It features plush banquettes, two bars—one open and lively while the other is warm and intimate—and large booths to create a comfortable atmosphere, encouraging guests to relax and enjoy. Vivid colors such as red and citron, as well as bold patterns, add an unexpected edge to the sophisticated space. Brock’s personal love of art is showcased throughout The Continental, with works for sale on the walls and a wall of the private dining area serving as a gallery for Brock’s own photography pieces.
Brock and Dryden worked with several local partners to bring the space and kitchen to life, including Southern Lights Electric ambient lighting, New Hat wallpaper, Mobile Fixture kitchen design, and Kings Upholstery.
Meet the Team
Brock is joined by a culinary and beverage team of talent hailing from some of the country’s most revered restaurants. Chef de Cuisine Colin Shane, a two-time semifinalist for the James Beard Foundation’s Rising Star Chef award and alum of the three-Michelin-starred SingleThread, is joined in the kitchen by Pastry Chefs Keaton Vasek and Michael Werrell, formerly the lead pastry chefs at Eleven Madison Park and owners of Trēt Baking Co. The Continental’s beverage program is helmed by Bar Director Jonathan Howard and Wine Director Claudette Silber, while the service team is led by Hospitality Director Sarah Hong.
The Continental is located at 1000 Broadway Street, Suite 101, and is open Wednesday through Sunday from 5:30pm – 9pm. For more information about The Continental, please visit thecontinentalnashville.com or follow the restaurant on Instagram @thecontinentalnashville. Reservations are available via Resy.