Why I blog

Hi. I’m Sharlene (yes, with an S) 🙂

In my early 20’s, I moved across the country, 3,000 miles from home in Tulare, California to the great city of Nashville, Tennessee and started growing up. Food began playing a major role in my life. I began to learn to cook and how to eat. Yes, how to eat. I always thought dinner had to be a protein, a starch and a vegetable. Boring. But then I tried Sushi for the first time. And I tried Indian cuisine (oh. my. goodness!) I tried Greek, Caribbean, Thai. You name it, I wanted to try it. Some friends and family teased that I was becoming a food snob. Maybe. But I chose to look at it as becoming a food lover. One of my favorite things to do with a companion was to cook together. The process of interacting, tasting as you go, then enjoying the fruits of your labor was a wonderful bonding experience.

Great Nashville Food

I added attending culinary school to my bucket list. Not because I want to be a professional chef. Just because I want to learn the proper techniques to cooking for real- not just through Food Network and You Tube. I also REALLY wanted to somehow make a living getting to go to a restaurant to eat and review their food. And to experiment with recipes and share them with everyone. “Back then” Food Blogging wasn’t a thing. Blogging in general was in its infancy and I am not a professional writer or computer whiz. So I thought there was no way I could ever do that. On with my life.

Fast forward about 12 years and I’m a kitchen manager in a casual dining restaurant. Its a corporate chain so I don’t get to explore my creativity but I do get to make a living feeding people and making them happy. Which I love doing. Then I meet this guy in a bar who happens to be from England. Cool. So I married him and we LOVE to cook together. He is an entrepreneurial person. Loves to figure out how to monetize doing things he loves to do. All of which leads to this website. An Englishman In Nashville.

an englishman in nashville salt and vine

We have so many ideas. It is hard to narrow down just what this site is about other than the obvious- FOOD. This idea came out of enjoying trying new to us restaurants then writing them a review on Yelp or Trip Advisor or Facebook. We realized we were doing this so often, why not do it officially? He also was noticing a lot of differences in the way Americans and English people eat out and just live life. So we thought it would be neat to review life from the viewpoint of an Englishman and his restaurant manager wife.

Our initial idea was to review restaurants. We both would review the food – his from the perspective of an Englishman experiencing how America prepares all kind of cuisine and mine from the perspective of a kitchen manager- so not only the food (quality, presentation, taste, etc) but also the ambiance, service, staff, management. We also wanted to share some British recipes and how to make them properly using American ingredients. Did you know the cuisine of the two countries is quite different? And there are many items not available in America! The way the English prepare food is even different from traditional American preparations. And trying to buy certain items online- like HP Sauce (Oh my goodness! The BEST sauce ever made!), Mushy Peas, Heinz Baked Beans – is entirely too expensive.

Chef and I collage

Here we are, a couple of months after we brought the website online and we are refining our theme, so to speak. We’ve had some amazing opportunities so far. Got to enjoy a 5 course tasting meal at the trendy and fabulous The Chef & I in Lennox Village. We are heading back there soon for a cooking class! We have been invited to 2 sneak peaks at restaurants before they open to the public. We’ve had even more fun cooking everything- because we now stop and take photos along the way and share recipes with all of you. So far, our recipes seem to be the most popular with you all so we will continue to focus on that. But we also want to make sure everyone coming to Nashville knows where to eat – there are hundreds, if not thousands, of choices! So we will continue to review as many places as we can afford to eat at for you.

Carbonara recipe Nashville

Something I have really enjoyed doing is finding ways to make a dish taste decadent, indulgent, so good it HAS to be bad for you but it’s not really. I am far from a health nut. But I prefer to eat whole, unprocessed foods as often as possible. All that extra sodium and preservatives aren’t necessary. But as a busy working and, for a long time, single mom the boxed and prepared meals were the easiest thing to do. I had to get creative. And I so badly wanted to share my creations with people but didn’t really have a good way to do that other than word of mouth and boring my Facebook friends and family with terrible pictures. Now I have a way to share my recipes with you! I am really looking forward to getting creative again!

There are TONS of food bloggers out there. And we all have our own little niche. The one thing we all have in common is our passion for food.

This site is an ever evolving one. We will take our cues from you. Tell us what you like by sharing, posting, reviewing. We want this to be a community of sorts. And we will evolve to meet your needs. What will never change is that we are doing it for the love of food and to share it with all of you so you can enjoy cooking and eating with your loved ones too.

So, without further ado, please check out and enjoy my first recipe: Sharlene’s Homemade Spaghetti Sauce