Meet Marathon Village, Nashville’s Coolest (Old) NeighborhoodBy Kristin Luna
Not far from the bright lights of Downtown Nashville’s Honky Tonk Row, an old 1900s auto manufacturing plant is poised to become Music City’s newest hub for creativity. Equal parts eclectic and edgy, the brick facade of this long row of warehouses now known as Marathon Village conceals some of the city’s most artistic endeavors.
Heading to Nashville soon? Venture over to Marathon Village and hit up these stops while you’re there.
The son of a jeweler, it made sense that Vincent Peach would later join the family business; after all, he began working in his father’s showroom at 13 years old. Now Peach has his own burgeoning label of one-of-a-kind pieces made from his signature pearls, handcrafted leather and other high-quality materials, all of which he sells out of his 28,000-square-foot showroom.
He’s also a hit among the country-music crowd, many of whom, like Carrie Underwood and Taylor Swift, frequently wear his jewels on the red carpet or on stage.
Marathon Village’s pièce de résistance is this eclectic hodgepodge of roadside finds and secondhand home goods, curated by Mike Wolfe, the creator and star of HISTORY Channel’s “American Pickers.” Next door, the Old Time Pickin’ Parlor also sells musical instruments and hosts regular pop-up jam sessions.
Owned by brothers Andy and Charlie Nelson, the centuries-old distillery behind the famed Belle Meade Bourbon was founded in the 1800s. It was recently revitalized by the founder’s great-great-great-grandsons, who didn’t discover they were the heirs to a whiskey legacy until they were in their twenties.
In 2014, after moving from the town of Greenbrier, the Nelsons debuted the eponymous distillery in a 30,000-square-foot space outfitted with a pictorial history of the brand, a merchandise shop, an event space and, of course, a tasting room.
Bonus: In a state with strict liquor laws, Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery is one of the only places in town to legally buy a bottle of liquor on a Sunday.
This live-music venue regularly hosts well-known names on both the rock and country circuits — from Brothers Osborne to ZZ Ward — as well as up-and-coming acts (think Moon Taxi, Will Hoge) from both Nashville and beyond.
Purveyor of gourmet marshmallows, Bang Candy Company has branched out into other sweet treats and novelties, like caramels, simple syrups and dark-chocolate bark. The confectioner also serves fresh baked goods, coffee, tea and other cold drinks, like fizzy lemonade created from Bang’s house-made syrup.
This homegrown spirits company focuses on innovative blends like quinoa whiskey, but it also produces more traditional varieties of vodka, gin and rum. While the company has two outposts in Nashville and one up in Bowling Green, Kentucky, the Marathon Village location is the only “brewstillery” that offers pairings of its experimental whiskey and high-gravity beers, flights and cocktails.
Food is hard to come by in Marathon Village — the area’s one minor downfall — but you can grab a baked treat and some java to tide you over at this rustic, industrial-style roaster that features specialty drinks like white chocolate blackberry latte.