NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A Nashville diner in business since the 1930s reopened Tuesday after an 18-month makeover.
The Elliston Place Soda Shop has been a family favorite for Nashvillians for generations.
Developer Tony Giarratana bought the restaurant and moved it right next door to its previous location on Elliston Place.
Crews spent a year and a half renovating the new building to replicate the soda shop’s iconic look from scratch, all during the pandemic.
Managers told News 2 the focus at the new location will be, as before, delicious diner cuisine and superb customer service.
“I think restaurants hold special places in our culture and our society. The places we go to, to celebrate, to soothe ourselves, to be with each other and to share meals,” explained Manager Jim Myers.
The restaurant’s new home is the old Cumberland Exchange Building, which was built in 1907.
Myers told News 2 they are excited to part of Nashville’s comeback.
“To not have that for so long, as a city, coming back, that part if very exciting to me. And then bringing an 82-year iconic restaurant back is important, too, and so it is a double of celebration of having people back in the space,” added Myers.
“Nashville would simply not be Nashville without Elliston Place Soda Shop,” said Giarratana in 2019. “It is a time machine; a living museum. I have been a loyal customer for years. When I recently heard from Skip Bibb that he was going to have to shutter the restaurant because of escalating rent, I told him I would try to buy it and refurbish it to its original classic style and provide necessary upgrades to the menu, décor and atmosphere.”
The new location offers more booths, tables and fountain stools to accommodate up to 150 diners, data and electrical outlets at each booth, live-music stage for regular singer/songwriter nights, a full-service bar with spiked milkshakes, outdoor dining and a walk-up window for to-go orders and free parking.
“The restoration of Elliston Place Soda Shop was a labor of love,” said Giarratana in a release. “When I first came to town over 30 years ago, the Soda Shop welcomed me with open arms. I’d take a little sass from Miss Linda and treat our kids to the best pies and milkshakes in the world. We’re delighted to open the doors wide again to anyone looking for a delicious slice of Nashville like no other.”
Elliston Place Soda Shop is Nashville’s longest continuously operating restaurant. The new, expanded restaurant retains its vivid red tile, a refurbished 1947 soda fountain from Chicago, retro furniture and refurbished mini juke boxes at every booth.
The restaurant will open at its new location at 2105 Elliston Place at 6:30 a.m. on weekdays for the breakfast crowd and at 8 a.m. on weekends. Click here to learn more.