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Chattanooga, TN restaurants...

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Ammon Jan 1, 2005 11:32 PM

I was just in Chattanooga for the holidays, and I managed to get away with not eating at an IHOP! I didn't manage to get to any of the places already mentioned on the board, but I did find a few others. Breakfast was at a place called Country Charm (or something like that), on Shallowford Rd (near the Red Roof Inn). It was okay -- typical breakfast food, nothing to complain about. Good service. We had dinner one night at India Mahal (5970 Brainerd Rd, near the Walmart. 423-510-9651). My sister-in-law found this place in the phone book. She's Indian, and gives it the nod for authenticity, and my brother and I (who have both been to India) agree. It had a fairly varied menu. We had ordered about 8 dishes, or so, since we had brought family there who had never had Indian food before. Most of it we ordered non-spicy for the newcomers, but it was still very good. Highly recommended, if you're in the area! The third place is downtown. It's a Japanese restaurant called Sekisui. It's been around for about 4 or 5 years, located over a candy store called Candy Land at 200 Market Street (423-267-4600) -- that's within walking distance of the Aquarium, if you're sightseeing. I was there for sushi, which was reasonably good. I had a sampling of a number of the fish, and the three I liked best were the smoked salmon, the scallops, and the eel. I tried some flying fish roe, but ended up with a snort of wasabi up the nose, and didn't taste much. :( The restaurant felt a bit "trendy", but the atmosphere was nice. Not very loud... jazz music playing in the background, but that changed to something a bit more "dancey" when the evening crowd started to fill the place. My cousin knows one of the chefs, whose wife owns a stationary store that she shops at, and he was very kind, stopping by our table to make sure we were enjoying everything, and to explain what fish we were eating (I didn't recognize everything).

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    Jeannine Smith Jan 2, 2005 12:06 AM

    I am his cousin from Chattanooga, Tn. Next time he is here we will try some bar-b-q. Who knows what else. It's just great to tease him about his least favorite place to eat....IHOP. So I won't force him to go there while he is my guest. I want to take him to a new restaurant on Gunbarrel Rd here in Chattanooga called Bone Fish. It looks pretty classy and pretty fancy but a bit pricey. To those that don't worry about a few extra dollars I suggest giving it a try. Oh yeah, have you tried Panera Bread Company? I am not much of a bread eater but this place is good. They have good soups and bagels. Then there is the large selection of breads of corse. Don't forget the good selection of drinks as well. If you come to Chattanooga look up the little hole in the wall places too. Those tend to be better than the regular fast food chains like Taco Bell, KFC,Wendys, Pizza Hut etc. etc.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Jeannine Smith
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      Ammon Jan 2, 2005 12:17 AM

      Ah, yes... silly me. I forgot about Panera, and I had the menu sitting right in front of me. :-P It's a small chain, and has three locations in Chattanooga -- 417 Market Street, 1810 Gunbarrel Rd, and 620 Northgate Mall Road. I had a bowl of French Onion soup (which was excellent, but could have used a bit more cheese, I think), and half a smokehouse turkey on three cheese bread that was fantastic. I wasn't too sure about the sun-dried tomato ale mustard when ordering, since I'm not that keen on fancy mustards, but it was very subtle, and gave the sandwich an amazing flavour that I wasn't expecting. It's very reasonably priced, and as a bonus, the company also has excellent ethics, giving back to the community and charity. I'll definately make this place a stop any time I'm back in Chattanooga (or anywhere else that has one). While I'm adding, I should also mention that all of these restaurants (with the exception of Sekisui) are within 5-10 minutes of the airport, for those of you just travelling through.

      Link: http://www.panerabread.com

    2. j
      Jenn Jan 8, 2005 04:39 PM

      There is or was a quite good Thai place near the airport--last time I was there was about 2 years ago, and they made their own dumplings and spring rolls and sauces. Used fresh basil and kaffir lime leaves. Cheap, delicious, friendly and as authentic as you'll find in the south. I forget the name, but I'm sure a phone book will direct you there.

      5 Replies
      1. re: Jenn
        msseay Jul 15, 2007 08:58 PM

        The name of the place is Sweet Basil...and it's still open. Yum!

        1. re: msseay
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          ericalee Jul 16, 2007 05:59 AM

          Yum is right - easily my favorite resaturant in Chattanooga.

          1. re: ericalee
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            crewsweeper Jul 16, 2007 08:26 AM

            Will have to look up Sweet Basil on our next trip in the fall. Also, the India Mahal sounds interesting. The spouse and I love good Indian food. I think others in our crew do as well.

            Jenn, Bone Fish is a chain, higher end chain, but a chain. I would hope that Chattanooga has some decent, local fresh fish places. Even a good deep fried fish camp can be a Chowhound expereince. Also Pannera Bread Company is by no means a small chain. They're all over Georgia and Florida! and elsewhere too I imagine. Compete with Atlanta Bread Company. But they are reasonable alternatives to areas where good delis/local sandwich shops are few and far between.

            Thanks for your and Ammon's reports.

            1. re: crewsweeper
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              toddle Jul 16, 2007 05:57 PM

              Canyon Grill is excellent for steak and seafood. Bluewater is also good

              1. re: crewsweeper
                msseay Jul 17, 2007 09:59 AM

                Allow me to suggest that you visit India Mahal at lunch time. They offer a buffet lunch with all the tasty staples of Indian cooking then. At night, the prices sky rocket and you don't get to taste a little of everything.

                My go-to place for seafood is Northshore Grille (http://www.northshoregrille.com/index...). The crab cakes are fabulous and you can sit on the back porch watching the goings on in Coolidge Park.

                If what you want is a sandwich, you should try either River Street Deli, which is also on the North Shore, or Caffeine, which is right downtown, across the street from Bessie Smith Hall. Both offer excellent menus, but I prefer Caffeine for its atmosphere and ethics.

        2. Davwud Jul 19, 2007 11:21 AM

          Mrs. Sippi and I found a little meat and 3 out by Chickamauga named Park Place. It was quite good and regional food.

          DT

          1 Reply
          1. re: Davwud
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            foodie3333 Jan 11, 2008 09:59 PM

            My favorite seafood restaurant in Chattanooga is by far Easy Seafood Bistro and Bar. I have eaten there several times and have never been disappointed. When I am in town I always go at least twice. Northshore is mediocre at best, and, though I haven't been, I hear Blue Water's food is lacking.

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