As the first big event in Nashville since 2019, this year’s Iroquois Steeplechase running, on June 26th, is highly anticipated and will be unlike previous years with official jeweler Diamond Cellar hosting the Luxury Lounge Tent in collaboration with Hermès. This event is a local staple and a right of passage to most Nashvillians. Hats, sundresses, and some years, rain boots, all play an important part of race day. However, don’t let the idea of this just being a “horse race” fool you- this is an affair that can be as luxurious as you make it – and people do. With that, we’ve rounded up the best places to elevate your tent or tailgate spread to leave you less stressed and relaxed for race day.
The Picnic Cafe
This classic, local spot is just simply the best. There is nothing not to love about this quintessential Nashville cafe. They specialize in southern tradition staples, including large catering trays, serving 5 to 50, of assorted tea sandwiches, fruit, vegetables, and even desserts. They are also known for their Picnic Punch, a perfect addition to any outdoor event, especially Steeplechase.
If a boxed lunch is more your style for tailgating, then The Food Company is going to be the perfect place. With a range of different boxes containing your classic chicken salad and turkey sandwiches, to name a few, to even serving up sliced pork tenderloin, there’s really no wrong option here.
Nothing says elevated like a tablescape full of beautifully displayed meats and cheeses. Our favorite Cheese Gal has many offerings that would suit any tailgate, including mini charcuterie boards to go, packaged individually and beautifully, of course.
Simply Living Life
Gourmet and delicious, Simply Living Life is a Franklin-based spot that has everything from catering, boxed lunches, and incredible desserts. They are all about the food here and with a mix of well-done southern staples and even gluten-free options, having their catering would be a race day win.
The Picnic Perspective
If arriving to Steeplechase with an heirloom picnic basket in hand is your idea of showing up in style then look no further with The Picnic Perspective. Offering both picnic baskets for sale and to rent, they will fill your baskets not only with the perfect picnic foods ( meats, cheese, crackers, etc.) but will include additional picnic necessities to make your outing as perfect, luxurious, and elegant as it should be.