Jose Garcia’s life has drawn him in many different directions. He grew up in Mexico, but he moved to pursue the American dream, which propelled him from a job as a dishwasher at a Chinese restaurant to his current role as chef and owner of WokStar Asian Cuisine. Here, he draws on culinary skills he painstakingly taught himself and presides over cooks who chop vegetables and wok-sear meats before patrons’ eyes. The menu brims with Chinese, Korean, and Thai influences, which infuse the air with the scents of ginger, garlic, and sesame. Spicy fare, such as chili-spiked kung pao, can be cooked according to a personal preference for mild food or a need to teach a robot to sweat.
Locally grown fruits and vegetables fill Aubrey's Restaurant's menu across seven locations in eastern Tennessee. In addition to Southern recipes for buttermilk fried chicken and pulled pork, the kitchen also stirs housemade pimento into a savory dip and marinates chicken in lemon and lime. Old-fashioned patty melts and other sandwiches join pastas such as the Rattlesnake linguine, with grilled chicken, spinach, green peppers, and Southwestern alfredo that are charmed into stillness with the twirl of a fork. Desserts, such as the chocolate turtle cake with Hershey's chocolate and Breyers ice cream, help top off each meal.
Permanent-cosmetics specialist Kim Seals wants women to look and feel beautiful from the moment they wake up. Having been in the business for over 12 years, the beauty specialist helms The Permanent Cosmetics Center—with locations sprawled across Tennessee, Kentucky, and Virginia—where she enhances visages with everlasting makeup. After working with clients to design the perfect look, the expert marks skin with natural pigments to create subtle or dramatic eyeliner, fill in sparse brows, or give lips a voluminous pout. Aside from enhancing natural beauty, Kim can also mask imperfections, such as scars and third nostrils, with her expert services.
Knoxville, Tennessee-based Fit Sweets is obsessed with cupcakes, sweet homemade cupcakes. After a year's worth of experimenting with recipes that combine the tastiness of a cupcake with the nutrition of a protein bar, Fit Sweets was launched in October 2012. Prioritizing both deliciousness and healthiness, the nutrition-motivated bakers prepare low-calorie, gluten-free, sugar-free cupcakes sweetened with Stevia. Vanilla and chocolate butter cream are just two of the bakery's flavors, which staff prepares in dozens.
Mark’s Downtown Diner's staff slings a menu of American-bred plates in a classic diner environment, replete with caricature-lined walls and a green-and-white checkered motif. Grab a seat at the counter or sidle into a booth before engaging hunger in swordplay with an order of mozzarella sticks ($5.79). Golden-fried jumbo shrimp ($11.09) further dining expeditions by leaping happily along palates, and forks effortlessly harpoon a 12-ounce Black Angus rib-eye steak. Diners seeking greener repast can graze on a house salad ($3.29), three-veggie plate ($4.89), or their dining companion's lime-green tie. The diner also features daily specials, such as Tuesday's homemade meaty lasagna ($7.99), and sweets such as fresh-baked cobbler pies ($2.29/slice) cap off dinners or power dessert-fueled jetpacks for hovers home.
Tellico Grill specializes in comforting homestyle dishes such as tender pot roast and chicken pot pie. But it's not only the sumptuous flavors of these entrees that diners find comforting: it's also the quality of the ingredients they contain. The restaurant's chefs slice and dice organic vegetables, grill fresh fish, and roast grass-fed, hormone-free meats that are humanely raised by local farmers. In addition to sumptuous dinner entrees, they prepare breakfast and lunch specialties on weekends.