When it comes to good food, Chattanooga does not disappoint. From soul food to seafood and pretty much everything in between, you can find something to whet your appetite in the Scenic City. Here are just a few Chattanooga restaurants that we recommend.
Chattanooga just might be the up-and-coming location for foodies. You can do a Google search and find several articles that go into more detail about the food scene in the Scenic City. We have updated our short list of Chattanooga restaurants below to include some new (to us), must-try places.
1. Uncle Larry's
Uncle Larry's is where you want to go if you want to eat some of the best fried catfish around. The fish is cooked after you order it, so it may take about 10 minutes to get the crispy, hot fish. Once you try it, you will see why it was featured in the July/August 2022 edition of Food Network magazine (A Southern Fried Road Trip).
In addition to fried fish, other menu options include pork chop sandwiches, hot dogs, and desserts. Side dishes include cole slaw, cucumber salad, pasta salad, turnip greens, baked beans, white beans, French fries, fried okra, and onion rings.
There are three locations around the Chattanooga area. We dined at the 736 E M L King Boulevard location. It is open Tuesday - Thursday from 11:00 am until 7:00 pm and on Fridays and Saturdays from 11:00 am until 8:00 pm.
2. FEED Co. Table & Tavern
Housed in an old Chattanooga feed and seed store, FEED Co. Table & Tavern is all about fine dining in a casual environment. Menu items feature Mountain Breeze Farms' 100% grass-fed wagyu beef and Forward Thinking Farms’ free-range chicken. They also use fresh-baked bread items, such as hamburger and hoagie buns, from nearby Niedlov's Bakery.
While the beef sandwich pictured above might not look like much, it was one of the best things that Jeff had while in Chattanooga in November 2022.
FEED has weekly specials, such as Mojito Mondays, Live Trivia on Tuesdays, B-I-N-G-O on Wednesdays, cocktail specials on Thursdays, and $3.50 drafts on Saturdays and Sundays (gamedays). They also have weekday Happy Hour from 3:00 pm until 6:00 pm with special prices on sips and snacks (how does a Mini Wagyu Quesadilla sound?).
FEED is located at 201 West Main Street and is open Monday - Thursday from 11:00 am until 9:00 pm, Fridays and Saturdays from 11:00 am until 10:00 pm, and on Sundays from 10:00 am until 9:00 pm.
Located at the Chattanooga Choo Choo, Stir serves scratch-made Southern comfort food made with fresh local ingredients (when possible) along with craft cocktails made with artisanal ice. (They freeze and carve 300-pound blocks of ice!)
We started by ordering their Spicy Tuna Bites which were made with sushi rice, cucumbers, furikake, sriracha wonton crisps, and pineapple sweet chili sauce. For drinks, Jeff ordered a Perfect Pairing (cocktail) which I thought tasted like "a holiday in a glass" and I ordered an Elderberry Sour which was refreshing.
For dinner, Jeff ordered the Crispy Mahi Bowl with housemade pineapple sweet chili sauce, sweet & sour sushi rice, edamame, pineapple, carrots and I ordered the Grilled Chicken Caprese (pictured above). It was one of the best meals that I had on our Chattanooga trip in 2022.
Stir is open Monday through Friday from 11:00 am until 11:30 pm and on Saturdays and Sundays from 10:00 am - 11:30 pm. Brunch is served on the weekends from 10:00 am until 2:30 pm.
4. Thai Smile
This little restaurant that is just blocks away from The Chattanooga Aquarium has become our family's favorite.
In fact, the last time that I drove through Chattanooga, I brought ice packs with me so that I could bring dinner home on my way back from Dollywood. True story.
We happened upon Thai Smile several years ago after spending the day at the aquarium. We started walking around and spotted the Thai Smile sign at 219 Market Street and walked in. It was love at first bite.
Every time we go, I try something new and think I have a new favorite. My newest favorite dish is Musamun Curry (above), a dish made with onions, potatoes, peanuts, and coconut milk.
The servings are fairly generous and the prices are moderate. Thai Smile was listed as one of Chattanooga’s best restaurants according to chef Daniel Lindley, as published at Condé Nast Traveler (online).
5. Maple Street Biscuit Company
Maple Street Biscuit Company opened its doors in Florida in 2012. Today there are 8 locations across the south, including the Chattanooga location at 407 Broad Street. The food here is absolutely amazing if I do say so myself.
I ordered The Five and Dime (pictured below). It is The Five (flaky biscuit, all-natural fried chicken breast, pecan wood smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, topped with sausage gravy with a little kick) topped with a fried egg. It was so good that I was tempted to lick my plate. The price was a little bit more than five and dime, costing $9 per plate, but it was well worth it.
Maple Street Biscuit Company uses fresh, natural ingredients. The scratch-made biscuits are made daily using real butter and unbleached artisan flour, plus a few other specialty ingredients.
The jellies and jams are made in-house without preservatives. Coffee beans are roasted each week and ground fresh daily. The syrup served at Maple Street Biscuit Company comes from the Bissell Family Farm which has been making real maple syrup for 150 years.
Other menu items include The Chicken Club (flaky biscuit, all-natural fried chicken breast, pecan wood smoked bacon, Romaine lettuce, tomato topped with blue cheese, ranch dressing, or honey mustard), The Squawking Goat (flaky biscuit, all-natural fried chicken breast, fried goat cheese medallion, and house-made pepper jelly), Smokey Mountain Mac-N-Cheese , and Hashups (home fries with chopped smoked ham, red and green peppers, grilled onions, mushrooms, and melted cheese). Vegetarian options are also available.
It is no wonder that Maple Street Biscuit Company was featured on The Food Network on the show called Guilty Pleasures.
Chattanooga's original ice cream shop, Clumpie's has been around since 1999. They have a wide variety of handcrafted flavors on their regular menu, as well as rotating seasonal flavors.
Naturally, you'll see classic flavors such as Butter Pecan, Sweet Cream, Strawberry, and Cookies and Cream on their menu. For a taste of something a little different, you'll find Burnt Sugar Brownie, Campfire, Curious George, Honeycomb, Nutella Crunch, and Whiskey Caramel Cornflake Crunch on their Clumpies Signature menu.
There are three locations around Chattanooga: Southside, St. Elmo, and Northshore, along with an ice cream truck that occasionally pops up around town.
We stopped by the Southside location at 1401 Market Street (kitty corner from the Chattanooga Choo Choo). It is open Sunday - Thursday from noon until 9:00 pm and on Fridays and Saturdays from noon until 10:00 pm.
Where do you like to eat in Chattanooga?
Bud Lanning says
We enjoy The City Diner. Go hungry, you won't leave that way.
Debbie Roberts says
We love Basecamp, Clydes, Julie Darlin donuts , Clumpies ice cream , City Cafe and Community Pie .
Clumpies is on my list of places that I need to go. Thanks for sharing your list.
Cynthia K Adams says
Community Pie was our favorite hands down. City Cafe was really good as well. Also a hidden gem at the Honest Pint are tater tots cooked in duck fat... light and crispy with curry ketchup and Sriracha mayo... 😋
I will have to check those out. Thanks for sharing!
C. Watson says
Stir, Blue Plate, Urban Stack and State of Confusion are also great choices
Laura Sanders says
We love the Stir and we follow dinner up at the Chocolate Delicatessen across the street.. Also, First Watch, the hash and cold brew are yummy, and we also like the Daily Ration, State of Confusion, and Mike's Hole in the Wall. One afternoon at Mike's we got caught in a sudden downpour on the edge of the crowded patio and a group of people came over and welcomed to share their table and helped us carry our food and drinks over. We made new friends that day. That's a normal day in the life here in Chattanooga.
That's so great to hear!
Reginald Dwight says
The Place to eat is Food works Restaurant North Chattanooga TN
Everyone needs to try Tata's Grill Authentic Bosnian cuisine in East Ridge. It's small family owned and fresh food.
Support local says
Maple Street is a chain owned by Cracker Barrel. Please support locally owned restaurants rather than chains. Kenny’s has the best breakfast in town.
best burger: tremont tavern or jack browns.
brisket nachos: boatyard is best. universal joint is very close.
regular nacho: no clear winner. hifi clydes, taco mac (surprisingly), Taco mamacita, I've heard purple daisy but cannot confirm. (bbq nacho)
best bbq: Barque (formerly charlies) is best I've had so far.
Breakfast has solid choices, I do love maple street, but some other choices would be : milk and honey, daily ration, and syrup and eggs.
Best steak: so far is at my own house. yet to find a great steak.
Best italian: Giardino. (very sneaky pick would be Stevarinos Italian Eatery & Pub as it actually has some delicious pasta dishes)
Best pizza: no clear winner. honerable mentions would be Goodfellas, pizzeria cortile, stevarinos, fiamma, and crust if you like square cut cracker crust style.
Wings: honestly yet to find a great one. champys, tremont tavern, I've heard pizza bros but I cannot comment myself.
Mexican food: *Varies Greatly in authenticity* : taqueria Jalisco, San Marcos (helpful if you can speak little Spanish as wait staff speaks very little English), Delias (hixson),
Soul Food/Fried Fish : Uncle Larry's
Thank you so much for your contribution! I clearly need to go to Chattanooga and eat at more restaurants.
You can’t beat Bluegrass Grill for breakfast/lunch. One of the best burgers is at Zarzours, the oldest restaurant in Chattanooga, family owned for over 100 years !!
Uncle Larry's for fish and great home cooking and sides. Good desserts too! Great customer service downtown especially!
Amanda Morgan says
Next time you're in Chattanooga look up Chef Leboze Mobile Bistro and Catering come see us!