Sean Brock is a busy man. We caught up with the Charleston chef—in between him going gator hunting and prepping for a $500-a-head dinner at McCrady’s with Swedish chef Magnus Nilsson—for the scoop on the new Nashville outpost of Husk, slated to open by March 2013.
The restaurant will be located at 37 Rutledge Street, just a few blocks south of Broadway, in the heart of downtown. Sean says the Husk menu in Nashville will mirror the Charleston location. “It will be the same recipes, the same dishes,” he says, “but we’ll focus more on Tennessee produce.”
He’s already using a veritable role call of products from Tennessee artisans: Olive & Sinclair chocolate, Cruze Farm buttermilk, Allan Benton’s bacon and country ham, Kelley’s Katch caviar, Muddy Pond sorghum. It’s just that now the goods will be a whole lot easier to come by.
“We have very little Cruze here [in Charleston], and we cherish it. We use it sparingly because it’s so hard to come by. I’m actually going through the last of it today,” he says. “But in a few months I’ll be bathing in Cruze buttermilk!”
Sean, who worked at the Hermitage Hotel’s Capitol Grille in Nashville until 2006, says he plans to focus on the farmers’ market and the relationships he had with area producers when he previously cooked in town.
Why Nashville? Well, it doesn’t hurt that Sean’s got so many friends there (Tandy Wilson of City House, Tyler Brown of the Capitol Grille, Peg Leg Porker, Patrick Martin, the Catbird Seat boys) or that the flight is a quick 40-minute hop from Charleston. But Sean says it’s because Nashville is “one of the most exciting food towns in the South” and he wants to be a part of turning the city into a bona fide food destination.
“It’s a town full of creative people who appreciate the artistic side of things. When I lived there I was doing 30-course tasting menus—some of the wildest food I’ve ever served in my life—and people couldn’t get enough of it,” he says. “People like to have fun there. When you go [to Nashville] you just have a blast.”
Of course, knowing how much Sean likes live music, if you’re looking for him in Nashville after hours, we suspect the best place to find him will be at Robert’s Western World, ice cold PBR in-hand.
Watch out. Nashville’s about to get Brocked.