Plan a romantic weekend getaway to Chattanooga and explore the city’s diverse culinary scene. Chattanooga’s restaurants serve an array of cuisines from around the world, including Southern comfort food, American, French, Italian, Thai, Greek and Mediterranean cuisine. Whether you are in the mood for a succulent burger, an amazing pizza, tacos, seafood or sliders, the city has it all. Dine at an intimate eatery downtown or have lunch with a view of the water.
Boathouse Rotisserie & Raw Bar offers some of the city’s best riverfront dining and specializes in steak and seafood with regional influences – much of it cooked on a unique wood-fired grill, designed and constructed by the owner. Savor incredible dishes like Truffle Mushrooms Fried, El Scorcho Shellfish Stew, or the Coarsely Chopped Mignon Steak Sandwich. Cocktails, beer, and wine are also available.
Seasoned restaurateur Lawton Haygood and his wife Karen opened Boathouse in 2002, and they also own the local Canyon Grill. You will find this refined restaurant on the banks of the Tennessee River in the heart of Chattanooga’s stylish Riverwalk.
The Flying Squirrel Bar provides patrons with eclectic Southern comfort food, tasty drinks, and a great time. Savor delicious dishes such as the Braised Brisket Sliders, Chorizo Sloppy Joes, or the Hudson Valley Duck Breast or stop in for brunch and try the Biscuits & Gravy.
The restaurant also serves craft beer, wine, and cocktails. Rock climbers-turned-entrepreneur friends Max Poppel and Dan Rose opened the eatery in 2013; they are also the owners of The Crash Pad next door. Flying Squirrel bar is located in the heart of downtown Chattanooga.
TerraMaé is a sophisticated, upscale bistro serving regional cuisine made from fresh, local, seasonal ingredients.
Enjoy lovingly prepared dishes such as Smokey Porcini Dusted Salmon or Sherry Glazed Beef Short Rib. Or stop in for Sunday Brunch and try the Mountain Man breakfast. Expertly handcrafted cocktails are also available, as are selections from an extensive wine list.
Hospitality industry expert Mark Oldham opened TerraMaé in 2012 and brought in Executive Chef Shelley Cooper (who has Appalachian and Southern roots) to lead the team. You will find this beautiful bistro nestled between the Westside and Fort Wood neighborhoods.
Public House Chattanooga is a hip, upscale tavern-style restaurant that serves incredible regional, Southern cuisine – all made from fresh, local, and seasonal ingredients.
Savor expertly prepared dishes like the Fried Chicken Livers, Grits, & Tabasco Butter, the Red Wine Braised Pot Roast, or the Stuffed Quail. A nice selection of wines is also available, and you can visit The Social, the restaurant’s bar, for spirits and cocktails.
Veteran restaurateur, Nathan Lindley (who formerly owned Chattanooga’s St. John’s restaurant), opened Public House in 2009. Enjoy the friendly atmosphere at this unique eatery, located at the south end of Chattanooga’s Warehouse Row.
Chattanooga’s popular Easy Bistro + Bar serves ingredient-focused French Bistro comfort foods with a modern twist. Savor incredibly prepared dishes such as the Rohan Duck 2 Ways, Smoked Cinderella Pumpkin Garganelli, and Pei Mussels & Moules Frites.
They have an expansive wine list and a nationally recognized cocktail program. Restaurateur power couple Executive Chef Erik Niel (a New Orleans native) and his wife Amanda are the proud owners of Easy Bistro + Bar, and they opened the place in 2005.
Interestingly, this charming eatery is located in the world’s first Coca Cola bottling plant in downtown Chattanooga just across the street from the Tennessee Aquarium.
Alleia is an upscale restaurant that serves lovingly prepared rustic Italian cuisine. Treat yourself to amazing dishes like Benton’s Bacon Wrapped Dates, Angel Hair with Gulf shrimp, soffrito, tomatoes, or the Quail Breast. They also have delicious pizzas baked in their handmade masonry oven. Wine and beer are also available, and be sure to save room for gelato.
Veteran restaurateur Chef Daniel Lindley, former owner of the iconic St. John’s restaurant, opened Alleia in 2009. Enjoy the cozy atmosphere in this charming eatery, which is situated inside the Old Harrington building in the rejuvenated Southside neighborhood.
Lakeshore Grille is a local favorite that serves modern American cuisine in an upscale, warm atmosphere. Take in majestic views of Chickamauga Lake as you savor tasty dishes such as the Crab-Crusted Tacos, Cashew Bourbon Chicken, or the Sausage & Shrimp Penne. Or stop in for Sunday Brunch and try the Smoked Salmon Cakes Benedict. Beer, wine, and cocktails are also available.
Executive Chef Robert Barclift and his family own and operate Lakeshore Grille, which they opened in 2014. Their cozy, intimate eatery is located above Chattanooga’s Lakeshore Marina in the space that formerly housed Top of the Dock.
Acropolis Grill serves some of Chattanooga’s most delicious Greek and Mediterranean cuisine, made from fresh, locally sourced ingredients. You can’t go wrong with tasty dishes such as the Greek Nachos, Moussaka, Eggplant Napoleon, or the Penne Vienna. Don’t miss their Spanakopita. They also have a full bar with daily specials.
Veteran restaurateur and founder Teddy Kyriakidis first opened Acropolis in 1995 and his family continues to own and operate the restaurant today. You will find this warm, friendly eatery near Chattanooga’s Hamilton Place Mall in between the Meadow Lawn and Twin Brook communities.
Chattanooga Brewing Company has some of the city’s best local beer and serves delicious pub fare. Dive into mouth-watering eats like the Beer Cheese Nachos, BLT Wedge Salad, or Hot Chick Stuffed Pocket. Wash it all down with an ice-cold brew like their flagship Hill City IPA.
George Reif and his wife Louise Mueller originally opened Chattanooga Brewing Company in 1890, but it closed in 1915. Friends Mark Marcum and Jonathan Clark (both engineers with an interest in home brewing) breathed new life into the operation and sold their first beer brew in 2010. It’s now located in the historic Southside district.
St. John’s restaurant serves delicious, seasonal, elevated American fare in a casually elegant setting. Treat yourself to exquisitely prepared dishes such as the Handmade Potato Pierogi, Heritage Farm’s Pork Tenderloin & Roasted Belly, or Benton’s Bacon Wrapped Monkfish. An extensive wine list and selections from a full bar are also available.
Renowned restaurateur, Nathan Lindley, founded St. John’s in 2000, Josh Carter, an individual who started at the restaurant as a server in 2000, became an owner in 2005 and continues to own the establishment to this day. This upscale eatery is located in the former St. John’s Hotel building (built in 1909) in the heart of downtown Chattanooga.
Urban Stack serves up some of the best gourmet burgers in town, and all of them are made from fresh, local, sustainable ingredients. Dive into unbelievable eats such as the Fried Bologna Sliders, Hamburguesa Mamacita, or the Jive Turkey Burger.
While their beverage program focuses on whiskey and bourbon, selections of beer, wine, spirits, and cocktails are available. Thriving restaurateurs Mike and Taylor Monen opened Urban Stack in 2010.
The building in which the restaurant resides is actually LEED Green Certified, highlighting their commitment to sustainability. Enjoy the delicious food and bustling bar scene at this hip eatery nestled in the heart of downtown Chattanooga.
J. Alexander’s is a casual dining restaurant that specializes in wood-fired contemporary American cuisine. Treat yourself to delicious, expertly prepared dishes such as the Hyde Park Sandwich, Shrimp Tacos, Barbecue Danish Baby Back Ribs, or Carolina Crabcakes. A full bar is available, as well as an outstanding wine list.
J. Alexander’s was originally founded in Nashville in 1991 by three businessmen: Jack C. Massey, Earl Beasly, Jr., and John Neff, Jr. It changed ownership in 2012 and has since expanded substantially as a chain. The Chattanooga site is located at the center of the Twin Brook, Meadow Lawn, and Queen’s Lace neighborhoods.
1885 Grill is a popular restaurant that offers an eclectic menu of authentic Southern coastal cuisine. Start your meal with 1885’s Award-Winning Wings, before diving into incredible dishes like the Shroom & Grits, Flounder Sandwich, or the Pork Chop. Stop in for weekend brunch and try the Fried Chicken & Waffles.
Wash it all down with something tasty and refreshing from the full bar. Owner Miguel Morales opened the restaurant in 2013 and runs it with his wife Leslie and daughter Bria.
The uniquely chic Bluewater Grille serves award winning handcrafted beer and modern American cuisine that mainly focuses on fresh seafood (particularly from the Northeast coast of Florida).
Savor expertly prepared dishes such as the Bourbon-Glazed Salmon, Cajun Fish Tacos, or Grouper Piccata. Alternatively, you can visit them for brunch and try the Eggs Benedict Over Crab Cakes.
Accompany your meal with one of their flagship beers or something from the full bar. Bluewater Grille has been in business since 2006 and is owned by CraftWorks Restaurants & Breweries, Inc. You will find it in downtown Chattanooga across from the Tennessee Aquarium.
Tremont Tavern serves classic American pub fare and specializes in beer and gourmet burgers. Try the Burger of the Month or a signature dish like the Coltrane (One Eye) Burger, the One Northshore Sandwich, or the Mango Salad. They have 21 beers on tap and over 100 bottled beer selections.
Stop in and enjoy live, local music, sports on TV, or their fun-filled Trivia Nights. Blossoming restaurateur Dustin Choate first opened Tremont Tavern in 2006. You will find this cozy hangout in North Chattanooga, quite close to the Chattanooga Golf & Country Club.
Chattanooga’s sophisticated Beast + Barrel is a “gastro smokehouse” that serves eclectic Southern comfort foods. Treat yourself to incredible savory dishes such as the Sandwich of Pain, Seasonal Churrasco, or the Dirty South (smoked pulled pork and smoked chicken with baked beans and mustard slaw).
They also offer a large selection of craft beer, wine, and cocktails. Seasoned restaurateurs Ryan Chilcoat, Matt Lewis, and Geoff Tarr, teamed up to open Beast + Barrel in 2014. Enjoy an elegant night out, an intimate dinner, or grab a few drinks at their posh eatery, which is located in Chattanooga’s Northside district.
Community Pie is a fun pizzeria that specializes in Neapolitan and New York-style pizzas, as well as homemade gelato and craft beers. Stop in and try the Drunk Pig, the Nueske’s Bacon or the Punzo Pasta. Wash it all down with an ice-cold beer – they have over 40 selections on tap.
They also offer delicious gelato, which is made from scratch at the sister restaurant Milk & Honey. Restaurateur power couple Mike and Taylor Monen opened Community Pie in 2013. It is situated in the heart of downtown Chattanooga just outside Miller Plaza.
The Camp House offers a delicious, globally inspired menu and is also one of Chattanooga’s finest coffee shops. Your taste buds will appreciate dishes like Bacon Quiche, Mushroom Shepherd’s Pie, or Chana Masala. Stop in for Saturday Brunch and try the Hot Goat Waffle. Counter Culture Coffee and espresso are also available, as is craft beer.
Owners Chris Sorensen and Aaron Rauch originally opened the restaurant in 2010 and brought in Executive Chef Jose Alfaro to head the kitchen. You will find their warm and friendly eatery at the crossroads of MLK, the City Center, and the UTC neighborhood in Chattanooga.
The City Café is a fun 24-hour diner that serves delicious classic American diner eats, Southern comfort foods, and a few Greek, Italian, and Southwestern options too.
Try the Jalapeno Hell Hole Omelette, The Godfather Panini, Broiled Catfish, or the Moussaka. Shakes, malts, and espresso are also available. In 2002, owner Lee Epstein opened City Café on Carter Street, right next to the Day’s Inn Rivergate.
Seven years later he expanded to a second location next to the Best Western Heritage Inn on Lee Highway. He recently opened a third location in Cleveland, Tennessee that is just outside of Chattanooga.
Published on November 18, 2015.