A sizzle rings throughout Lou’s Burger House’s kitchen as the cooks toss behemoth 10-ounce burgers onto grills. Nearby, friendly staffers sing and dance while washing dishes or joke with the customers, who lick flaky chicken-pot-pie crust off their forks and tear into barbecue pulled-pork sandwiches. Forks also dig into heaping sides of mac ’n’ cheese, creamed potatoes, and collard greens, as well as sweet-cherry and peach cobbler. Lou’s recently added the barbecue options to its menu—making its slogan, “Our butts will drive you nuts!” finally have more than one meaning.
A place for edible creativity, Yoli's beckons visitors to concoct their own frozen yogurt treats. The shop keeps 21 different flavors—including low-fat options—on tap, and its toppings bar incites snackers to load up on as many add-ons as they please. Bursts of color aren't limited to yogurt cups, however, as the shop features red tables and booths, retro white chairs, and two flat-screen TVs to make onsite munching extra comfortable.
In a sophisticated environment of earth tones and warm lighting, the Broad Street Grille serves a high-quality menu prepared from fresh, local ingredients, earning praise from CityScope magazine as the city’s best Sunday brunch spot. Chef Matt Pinner works with Chattanooga-area farmers whenever possible, using produce from Crabtree Farms, bread from Niedlovs Breadworks, hydroponic lettuce from Happy Valley Farms, and buffalo from Eagle Rest Ranch. Commune with the blackened chicken pizza ($11), made with creole sauce and caramelized onions, peppers, and smoked gouda. Other Southern-twanged dish divas include shrimp and grits ($26) and chicken under a brick ($18), served with creamed brussels sprouts, prosciutto, and vinaigrette. The restaurant’s extensive wine list includes seductive suppables by the glass, such as Smoking Loon chardonnay ($7) and Bogle Russian River Valley pinot noir ($32). The Broad Street Grille also offers streetside seating and boasts an open exhibition kitchen, a peek behind the curtain rivaling the best covert puppeteer videos.
Inside a restored Colonial Revival mansion a stone's throw from the Tennessee River, Chef William Oglesby blends American and international dishes. Classic southern recipes take on worldly flavors, such as fried green tomatoes crowned with prosciutto and herbed goat cheese and sweet potato-crusted shrimp with fennel slaw. Local ingredients star in dishes such as the New York strip steak rubbed with espresso from nearby Rembrandt's Roasting Co and flanked by truffle-infused potatoes. Chef Oglesby and his culinary team also meet unique dietary needs with many gluten-safe options. A terrace overlooking the river, two naturally lit sunrooms, and an intimate library create a romantic atmosphere wherever guests choose to dine.
In today's restaurant environment, sometimes the food takes a backseat to everything around it—be it a celebrity chef or a dining room designed by a famous architect. This isn't the case at Chatt Smoke House, where the food is always the focus. Within Chatt's casual, no-frills atmosphere, regulars dine on simple barbecue favorites. Its these smoky pork sandwiches, fall-off-the-bone ribs, and comforting Southern sides that keep them coming back time and again—not the bells and whistles.
Owner and Executive Chef Nick Kyriakidis fill menus and bellies with a Southern-minded fusion of Greek, Italian, and other Mediterranean fare. The dinner menu explodes with more flavor than dynamite wrapped in bacon, showcasing a farm-lamb burger nestled against arugula, tzatziki, and shallots ($10), and an eggplant napoleon that achieves a zesty regime with seasoned veggies and two cheeses ($13). Lunch and meze spotlight culinary configurations such as wood-grilled local mushroom pizza ($12) and spinach pies with feta, romano, and kasseri cheeses ($4.50). Sugared pecans, dried cranberries, and gorgonzola vie for flavor dominance in the Niko's house salad ($7), which diners can shovel into their maws while perusing the restaurant's dessert menu or a wine list with more international constituents than an official metric-system fan club.