Where to Eat
Olibea: Named after his two oldest children, Jeffrey DeAlejandro’s popular breakfast spot serves a delicious mix of Southern and southwestern dishes. The chicken biscuit—fried chicken on top of the best biscuit I’ve ever eaten—is served over gravy with a side of breakfast potatoes and house-cured bacon. Eat here for breakfast, and you may not be able to eat again for the rest of the day—but it’s worth it.
Buttermilk Sky Pie: Meredith and Scott Layton have combined their family pie recipes and offer seasonal and classic flavors in multiple sizes. Get a to-go box with a few flavors—my favorites are buttermilk, coconut cream, pecan, and the I-40, a combination of pecans, chocolate chips, and grated coconut.
Litton’s Market and Restaurant: You can’t come to Knoxville without a stop at Litton’s. Their burgers and desserts are known far and wide, and the Litton family continues to pass down their culinary and hospitality secrets to each generation.
Knox Mason: Chef and owner Matt Gallaher spent time at Blackberry Farm before eventually opening his first restaurant in his hometown of Knoxville. Since then, his efforts have been a driving factor in area restaurants incorporating locally sourced, high-quality ingredients into their menus. Be sure to order the fresh pork rinds and the Sweetwater pimiento cheese to start your meal.
Where to Stay: The Tennessean: This downtown development plans to open in April, but make your reservations now—it will be the embodiment of Southern luxury, and its proximity to all the spots you want to visit will make it a necessity. Beautiful design based on the winding Tennessee River, sweeping Knoxville views, and impeccable service are just a few things to look forward to.