Tennessee December 27, 2019
The 15 Restaurants You’ll Want To Eat At In Tennessee In 2020
The eating scene in Tennessee is one of the best in the nation. The state hosts a conglomeration of contemporary eateries, modern dining experiences and cozy, homey mom and pop shops that make for a perfect meal. These fifteen restaurants are scattered across the state, and each has garnered rave reviews by locals and tourists alike over the past year. Though there is a larger concentration of restaurants in Tennessee’s main cities, a few small-town gems are peppered in there as well. Think we missed a favorite? No worries! Leave your comments below, and a quick reason why your favorite restaurant should make the list. We can’t wait to hear from you!
Here’s to a whole lot of good eating in Tennessee this year, folks. It’s going to be a good one.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Tailor - Nashville
Tailor is sitting pretty as Nashville's premier "unique dining experience," and it was even listed as one of Bon Appetit's top restaurants in the nation for 2019. It's quite an honor for such a new eatery! The culinary genius of Vivek Surti shines through the South Asian American cuisine that makes up the intimately designed menu. Reservations are required, and there are two seatings available for guests, one at 6 p.m. and the other at 8:30 p.m. from Thursday to Sunday.
2. Superica - Nashville
Most folks know Superica due to its highly popular reign in Atlanta, but the Tex-Mex restaurant has made its way to Nashville amidst grand fanfare. Come for the classics like fajitas and nachos, and stay for the queso fundido. The tacos al pastor are a scene-stealer, and the cocktails are strong and made fresh to order.
3. Paloma Bar de Tapas - Chattanooga
The extensive selection of Spanish wine paired with a fabulous, tapas-centric menu has elevated Paloma in the eyes of the nation. Traditional Spanish tapas get a creative twist, and there's a series of salads, soups and freshly-prepared meats on the menu for folks looking for more of an entree. The bacon-wrapped dates are too good to be true. Really.
4. California Tortilla - Chattanooga
California Tortilla may be a chain, but it's recently taken the residents of Chattanooga by delicious surprise. Known to locals as CalTort, it's a quick spot to stop if you're looking for healthy versions of your favorite Mexican-inspired meals. For every expensive restaurant, there should be something a bit more budget-friendly, and post-hike Chattanoogans are flocking to California Tortilla.
5. Cruze Farm - Knoxville
Cruze Farm has multiple offerings in Knoxville, including an ice cream parlor and a pizza barn. Growling bellies are sure to fall for the hand-tossed pizzas and garlic cheese bread, though. Cruze Farm offers weekly specials, like half off pepperoni pizzas on Wednesdays, and has a handful of locally sourced salads that add a bit of crunch to an otherwise indulgent meal.
6. Mad Priest Coffee Roasters - Chattanooga
Mad Priest was recently honored by Food & Wine as the runner-up in Tennessee for their "Best Coffee In Every State" honor. Of course, it's not just award-winning, locally-roasted coffee available for purchase. There's also a full-service cocktail bar inside and an entire lunch menu that boasts a unique spin on healthy favorites. An all-day cafe and bar is just what Chattanooga needed.
7. Naked River Brewing Co - Chattanooga
As Chattanooga's largest brewpub, Naked River brewing has become a craft beer destination for folks of all ages. There's an expansive, comfort-food-centric menu and a whole series of community-minded events offered throughout the week. If you're looking for a fun date night and a bit of adventure, this is a solid spot to visit.
8. 3rd and Court Diner - Memphis
The folks at 3rd and Court Diner in Memphis pride themselves on their "new play on an old classic." The breakfast, lunch and dinner eatery focuses on famed southern comfort foods, like fried catfish and loaded grilled cheeses with seasoned fries on the side. Make sure to check out their Blue Plate lunch specials, available throughout the week.
9. Saint Stephen - Nashville
Saint Stephen provides a fresh take on Nashville's modern cuisine focus with a menu that celebrates true American classics. Dinner is offered every day of the week, as well as a Happy Hour, and a brunch menu is available on Sundays. Make sure to try the ember roasted sweet potatoes, and perhaps even the cheeseburger served with a smear of black garlic aioli and pickled sweet onions.
10. Puck Food Hall - Memphis
Puck Food Hall is an airy, beautiful space in downtown Memphis that is made up of ten restaurants. Located in a historic building, it honors hungry meal seekers with a stunning aesthetic and a series of food options that are bound to make everyone in your party happy.
11. Redheaded Stranger - Nashville
The Redheaded Stranger in Nashville, Tennessee is a neighborhood taco shop that serves up Tex-Mex tacos inspired by North America's southwestern region. Fresh, homemade tortillas are served up with a series of salsas, and the cocktails are not to be missed. The brainchild of the folks at nearby Butcher & Bee, this is a dining concept worth the investment.
12. Label Restaurant - Johnson City
Johnson City's Label Restaurant has been voted the best dinner restaurant in the city, and its expansive menu is paired with true southern hospitality. If you're seeking anything from a decadent cheeseburger to a roll of sushi or perhaps even a steak, this is the east Tennessee spot for you.
13. Kefi - Knoxville
If you're looking for the taste of the Mediterranean in Knoxville, Kefi is the place to go. Located just by the Old City, the craft cocktails and shareable plates inspired by Greek classics make it a winner for the whole family. Definitely get a plate of hummus as an appetizer (we love the spiced lamb and sumac hummus!), and don't forget to indulge in a plate of falafel.
14. Gourmet and Company - Johnson City
Gourmet and Company has been a Johnson City classic for over 30 years, and it focuses on serving seasonal American classics with a late-night bar menu to round out the day. Visitors rave about the friendly service, and the fried crab cakes are the stuff of legend.
15. 'Za Wood Fired Pizza - Nashville
Is there anything better than ending a solid food list with a slice of pizza? 'Za is a new Nashville hot spot, and the brainchild of the founders of the wildly popular Biscuit Love. The southern-inspired Italian eatery boasts favorites like pepperoni and margherita pizza, all with cheeky names like "Yell Talker" and "That Hipster Place In Brooklyn."
You’re probably all sorts of hungry after reading through that delicious list, but here’s one more brunch spot to grow on. Happy dining, Tennessee! Address: 1300B 3rd Ave N, Nashville, TN 37208, USA Address: 605 Overton St, Nashville, TN 37203, USA Address: 805 Chestnut St, Chattanooga, TN 37402, USA Address: 5215 TN-153, Hixson, TN 37343, USA Address: Cruze Farm Way, Knoxville, TN 37918, USA Address: 1900 Broad St Apt C, Chattanooga, TN 37408, USA Address: 1791 Reggie White Blvd, Chattanooga, TN 37408, USA Address: 24 N B B KING BLVD, Memphis, TN 38103, USA Address: 1300 3rd Ave N, Nashville, TN 37208, USA Address: 409 South Main Street First Floor, Memphis, TN 38103, USA Address: 305 Arrington St, Nashville, TN 37207, USA Address: 112 Tipton St, Johnson City, TN 37604, USA Address: 120 E Jackson Ave, Knoxville, TN 37915, USA Address: 214 E Mountcastle Dr, Johnson City, TN 37601, USA Address: 2005 Belcourt Ave, Nashville, TN 37212, USA