A refuge for food lovers, Nadeen’s Hermitage Haven recently delighted locals when they reopened after a short shutdown related to COVID-19 mandates.

Owners John and Nadeen Hoffman want everyone to know, “We’re open, y’all.”

They reopened July 8.

And yes, the restaurant is named after Nadeen, a rightful honor, her husband said.

Nadeen’s is a cute little establishment with a homey atmosphere. The eclectic menu is impressive, and the cocktails are inventive. The restaurant straddles the line between an upscale diner and restaurant with made-from-scratch fare. Think breakfast, lunch and dinner. But, it’s breakfast all day if that’s to someone’s liking. Let’s talk about Nashville hot chicken and waffles, biscuits to bacon Brussels and handcrafted Philly cheesesteaks. Add a delightful smorgasbord of signature cocktails, beer and wine.

“This place is all about elevating classic American dishes,” said John Hoffman.

John and Nadeen Hoffman have an interesting history that led them to their haven in Hermitage.

“We were buddies in grade school and middle school,” he said. “We and good friends in the neighborhood.”

This was in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Nadeen Hoffman moved to Minnesota. Flash forward 17 years, and they reconnected in Nashville where they eventually met up at Red Door.

“It was a good meet-up,” John Hoffman said.

It was so good they fell in love, married and have two children, 5 and 2 years old.

After they lived in Nashville, they pondered what the local market needed.

“We spent eight months looking and knew the Hermitage market was hot,” John Hoffman said.

They spotted the original Pizza Hut building on Lebanon Pike that also housed two Mexican restaurants. They took the plunge.

“No, we were not scared in the least,” said Hoffman. “We had a plan and a concept.”

They opened Nadeen’s in 2017. Their concept was a big hit, coupled with delicious, made-from-scratch menu items.

“Nadeen’s name is on the building because she and I our co-owners,” said John Hoffman.

They had two really good years building a reputation of excellence and deliciousness in a fun atmosphere. There were regulars galore, and new folks heard about the place and came.

John Hoffman said the appearance of COVID-19 in March was no fun. And, that’s an understatement.

“In January, we were so excited. We had loyal guests, and we were super pumped,” he said.

Then came the March 3 EF-3 tornado, and they lived in East Nashville and were one block away from the twister’s path.

Nadeem’s opened and closed during the pandemic. They promised their food fans they would reopen when practical, safe and reasonable. They reopened last month and are currently at 50% capacity inside with masks and sanitizing stations.

“We’ve gone the extra mile,” John Hoffman said.

The authentic Philly cheesesteaks, house-ground burgers, house-cut fries, draft beer and cocktails are just a few of the favorites among the locals. John Hoffman said people come back for their biscuits and white gravy, dubbed the kernel. It is an open-faced biscuit, topped with house-chopped sausage and gravy. The Southwest scramble is another favorite among the regulars with two scrambled eggs, Spanish rice, pinto beans, cheese whiz, avocado and pico de gallo. And, an ode to Hermitage, there’s the Hermitage hash. Check out the menu to see the sunny-side-up fare.

John Hoffman said the huevos rancheros are on constant order. Think tortillas, pinto beans, sunny eggs and more.

The classic dish is chicken and waffles.

“It’s not traditional,” John Hoffman said.

It’s a waffle, topped with a crispy fried chicken breast, berries and topped with powdered sugar.

Non-breakfast go-tos are the patty melt, Philly cheesesteak and the Reuben.

Regular top-level firefighter Shawn Donovan lives in Mt. Juliet. He used to visit a couple times a week before the pandemic. And has already been there twice since it reopened. Nashville hot Chicken and waffles is his favorite dish.

“It’s the best place in Nashville if you are looking for atmosphere, great staff and not a bad dish on the menu,” Donovan said. “The drinks are good, too. For being at a place that’s on the main drag, you would think that it was located on a Main Street in a small town with the feel inside.”

Signature cocktails at the full bar, in addition to beer and wine, are the bloody Marys – a hangover killer – and bourbon and gin drinks.

Donovan said another thing he likes about this restaurant is regardless of how many times he’s been there, “Every person I’ve had serve me has been top notch and always has a smile on their face.”

Nadeen’s Hermitage Haven is at 3410 Lebanon Pike. Hours are Wednesdays through Saturdays from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. It’s closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Call 615-873-1184 or visit nadeensinhermitage.com for a menu, to-go orders and to get directions.

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