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Aug 4, 2007 07:52 AM

Cookeville/Smithville TN local spots?

Got a family member starting school at the crafts center that's located between Cookeville and Smithville (between Knoxville and Nashville, for those outside the area). Wondering if anyone can recommend something beyond all the chains in the area - BBQ, diners, nicer dinner spots - would love to have a list to check out on our visits. Thanks for any recommendations.

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  1. I attended the craft center between 96 - 99. Wasn't a heck of alot out there. Cookeville had a bar bq/fried catfish place on a north/south road somewhat need Tn. Tech. There was a tasty local flavor cajun place to the west & south of Smithville (about 30-40 min. drive) called Manuels I believe. Open weekends only, family that owns it has many musicians, and in the summer they play on front porch & dance in the street! Food was tasty too. Have your student ask clay instructor Vince or metals teacher Bob, both will know if it is still there. On the west side of the lake was a casual spot at a marina called the Coppertop. Believe community is Silver Point. Good fried catfish. Mainly open in summer. Downtown Smithville had a place near the square that was part health food store, but did a decent job of lunch & dinner too. Name something like the Sundowner or something.

    Once you get there, just talk to the faculty. It is a very small world on the hill and people are usually happy to help!

    Sorry I am not as specific as I'd like, it was a while ago & the details are getting rusty!

    Oh, Kathy, the Business manager should be a good source too.

    A bunch of us older students/faculty took turns driving to Atlanta weekly with massive food orders for the Dekalb Farmers Market since the local grocery pickings were so dismal! Hopefully 8 years has seen improvement in that area.

    2 Replies
    1. re: meatn3

      Imnash, have you found any treasures here? Please post if so, I'm planning a trip & would love an update!
      Pretty sure the BBQ place is Bobby - Ques - I liked the catfish better than the Q...
      Finally was able to remember where Manuels is:

      1. re: meatn3

        Bobby Q's has been one of my favorite Cookeville restaurants for years. Every time I'm in town (about twice a year) there will be at least one guaranteed stop there. I'm a fan of their pork plate, it may not be the best Q you can get anywhere, but it is definitely mighty fine for the area. I recommend you try out the beans and lemon tea while you're there too.

    2. Here is a link to a map of the Cajun place, Manuel's:

      1. Evans Mill is in the area, they have a really nice restaurant.

        1 Reply
        1. re: cookbooknola

          dippys doodle on highway 70 going towards baxter.
          comos on north willow
          crawdaddies next to the old train depot