First, thanks to EVERYONE who sent me some suggestions of bakeries to stop into. It really helped out a lot!
I ended up visiting 2 (actually 3, but one was closed or relocated or something) and had A BLAST! Here's the verdict:
Wow! This bakery chain was kinda crowded but they kept the line moving quickly and I've never seen icing so high. I mean like a beehive of icing. Mandy, my friend and co-market researcher (it sounds way more professional to say we're market researching than to say we're eating our weight in sugar and butter), and I actually had to use a fork to remove about an inch and half of icing just to get a taste of cake. Seriously.
Mandy liked it (I'm more a homestyle butter kinda gal though) and the cake part was good (although probably, and I NEVER thought I'd say this EVER, too much icing for me) and I apologize profusely that I didn't think to whip out the camera until we'd pretty much made an enormous mess of our haul. Four people, two forks, and a box of cupcakes that you have to dig through icing to get to cake... not a neat endeavor! Service was brisk but polite and obviously they do a good business- been franchising like crazy! Best of luck!
OMG. I am IN LOVE with this place!!! If you go to Nashville, you MUST go here. We got a huge variety of things to try, you know, to make sure we did an adequate job researching, and ALL of it was good.
My favorite things: little baked dog treats to take home to Dixie and Finny, the macaroons, the 'brookie'- combination brownie and cookie, and Best of All... the GRITATTA. Holy grits and eggs, Batman! A gritatta is the creation of Al, whom we met while there, and it's basically a base of grits with an egg fritatta on top... all combined into one lovely and delicious creation. I've been having gritatta dreams and fully plan on making some of my own for a decadent Sunday brunch.
I got to meet the owners, the Einsteins, and they could not have been any nicer. Now THIS is a neighborhood bakery. They had a small space, a small menu, and huge smiles. They use locally roasted coffee just like us (while ours is Ugly Mug, theirs is Drew's Brews) and they were so nice as to send us off with a free package to try out! We traded contact info and they were so enthusiastic and encouraging of my budding business.
Whenever I go to Nashville, I will DEFINITELY be stopping back in for more treats, more gritatta, and a great cup of Drew's Brews. Awesome spot!