RED Restaurant expands into new space, adds patio

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Middle Tennessee ’s only restaurant catering to the GLBT community will open in a beautiful new space in October, offering lunch and a new dinner menu.

RED Restaurant, currently located inside Tribe (an upscale music video bar on Church Street ), will move next door to Tribe into a space once occupied by the Global Market. The restaurant will now have a separate entrance from Tribe, and offer patio seating. It will also boast a bar that overlooks the patio area.

The space currently occupied by RED in Tribe will be converted into a lounge, complete with TVs, a large pool table and comfortable seating. A door will connect the two areas, but the move will give RED its own identity and space.

The expansion is part of the continuing growth making Church Street Nashville ’s largest “gay district." It marks a significant investment by the owners of Tribe, who jump-started the Church Street area by opening Tribe more than three years ago.

“We hope to open the new RED around the first to middle of October,” explained David Taylor, who owns Tribe along with business partner Keith Blaydes. “The décor will have a similar look and feel to Tribe – much like a first cousin to Tribe.”

As part of the expansion, the parking lot located behind RED and Tribe will be paved, something that Taylor said will make many of his customers happy.

With the move comes, new lunch hours ( 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. ), which Taylor said was needed in the busy business and hospital district surrounding RED. RED has not previously offered lunch.

“There are not a lot of options for lunch in the very immediate area,” he said. “Lunch patrons will be able to get in and out of here quickly.”

Tracy Barkley, who has been executive chief at RED for almost a year, said the lunch menu would offer a variety of items, most of which would be less than $10.

Those items include the wonderful signature soups of Sous Chef Sterling Wright, whose chicken corn chowder soup has become one of the “hottest” soups in town.

“Oh yes, Sterling will continue to prepare the soups,” Barkley said. “He’s great and those are his specialty.”

New menu items offered for lunch include Rib eye sandwich, portabella passion sandwich, Southwestern veggie burger, an “ultimate” grilled cheese sandwich on fresh baked rosemary bread, a Caribbean tilapia sandwich, and an Italian chicken wrap. Pasta items include roasted veggie lasagna and shrimp scampi. Lunch-goers will find entrees including a fisherman-battered cod served with steak fries and cole slaw for only $7.95. If you prefer meat and vegetables, the chicken your way served with fresh corn and garlic mashed potatoes with brown gravy for $8.95 might tingle your taste buds. Other entrees include a pulled pork BBQ shoulder and a grilled rib eye platter.

“We are very excited,” Barkley said. “We are also unveiling a new dinner menu, along with a new martini and wine list.”

Some of Barkley’s new entrées come with prices ranging from $9.95 for the Sheppard’s pie to $19.95 for the curried lamb. The new menu will expand offering ten main dishes, seven appetizers, six different types of sandwiches and several varieties of pasta dishes.

And the popular “bar food” will continue to be made available, including the most sold item at the bar, chicken tenders with steak fries.

The new lounge area will be available for private parties, and the restaurant can be rented out for private functions as well.

“We also offer a full catering menu and booking of private functions,” Barkley said. “We’ll cater at a business or home as well.”