BLOUNT COUNTY, Tenn. – Whether you stay at the Richmont Inn to experience their award-winning Crème Brule Kahlua, Gracehill Bed and Breakfast for an elegant breakfast experience with a view, Dancing Bear Lodge to enjoy locally grown culinary delights, or you want to taste your way through a variety of local restaurants and homemade masterpieces, the Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee have an abundance of options for even the most picky palette. Scattered throughout Blount County, there are numerous hidden gems that serve delectable, Southern delights. In addition to its Crème Brule, which was honored by Gourmet magazine, and its international breakfast provided to guests, Richmont Inn offers unique dining options to those not staying at the Inn, as well. Working closely with several top restaurants in Geneva, Switzerland, Richmont Inn has perfected the classic Swiss fondue dinner. Wine is paired with each course, or guests can order a bottle of wine or beer from its extensive list. Dinner is served on Fridays and Saturdays by reservation, which can be made by calling (866) 267-7086 or emailing email@example.com. More information can be found at www.RichmontInn.com. The Dancing Bear Restaurant is another unique venue providing visitors with the opportunity to enjoy an elegant dining experience in a gracefully rustic dining room. Dancing Bear guests can enjoy a variety of authentic regional dishes prepared by Chef Jeff Carter, ranging from seared flat iron steak and Yukon mashed potatoes to lightly blackened mahi-mahi with sheep’s milk cheese gnocchi. Dancing Bear’s menu changes nightly but is always complemented by the only full service bar and wine program in Townsend. Dancing Bear Restaurant requires dinner reservations made in advance. For more information or to reserve a table at the Dancing Bear Restaurant, please call (865) 448.6000 or visit www.DancingBearLodge.com. Known for its elegant, yet casual setting where guests can enjoy Southern favorites like fried green tomatoes, steak & potatoes and shrimp & grits, as well as a wide variety of wine from which to choose, the family-owned Foothills Milling Company is a local favorite. Foothills Milling Company is open from Tuesday to Saturday, and reservations are recommended and can be made by calling (865) 977.8434 or visiting www.FoothillsMillingCompany.com. Becky’s Grocery & Grill provides lunch, dinner and coffee, as well as a quaint dining atmosphere to those who visit. Open on Wednesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Becky’s offers a fun and unique, yet casual place to eat or to just enjoy a warm cup of coffee with family and friends. For more information on Becky’s Grocery & Grill, please call (865) 379.6121. Located at the west end of Townsend, the Back Porch Restaurant offers a relaxing dining experience with a screened-in porch overlooking the creek. The Back Porch serves up authentic, made from scratch Southern recipes with a delightful balance of country cooking and gourmet flare. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, the Back Porch is open daily from 8 a.m. to 9p.m., with the exception of off-season hours during January through March. For more information on the Back Porch Restaurant, please call (865) 448-6333. Miss Lily\'s Café offers a peaceful, country setting to have lunch or dinner. Open on Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., some of Miss Lily’s lunch options include the Hillbilly Philly and the Fried Green Tomato Samm’ich, a local favorite. The café’s dinner menu provides guests with a variety of Southern favorites from which to choose. Miss Lily’s also offers a Sunday brunch from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., so all who visit can enjoy their Sunday afternoon nap with a satisfied appetite. For more information on Miss Lily’s Café, please call (865) 448-1924 or visit www.MissLilysCafe.com. What began as a small ice cream shop and bakery has now become one of Maryville’s most unique cafés. Sweet Celebrations delights visitors’ taste buds with its charming cakes, cupcakes and pies, flavorful meals, fresh salads, hearty soups, and of course, ice cream. Sweet Celebrations gives visitors the opportunity to enjoy a tasty lunch with family and friends and bring the outing to a close with a sweet treat. For more information on Sweet Celebrations, please call (865) 233-2849 or visit www.Sweet-Celebrations.net. Offering its guests lunch and dinner, as well as a full service bar with wine, beer and cocktail selections, the Laurel Valley Resort’s restaurant is an ideal place to grab lunch after an early game of golf, have a romantic dinner for two or host your very own banquet. On Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Laurel Valley provides guests with a variety of choices, such as salads, sandwiches and wraps for lunch and revolving dinner selections, and even take-out and picnic baskets. The restaurant is also open on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for lunch. Dinner reservations are recommended. For more information on the Laurel Valley Resort’s restaurant or to make a reservation, please call (865) 448.6690 or visit www.LaurelValleyTN.com/Restaurant. Aubrey’s offers guests a menu stocked full of traditional Southern favorites, ranging from burgers and sandwiches to buttermilk fried chicken, peanut crusted catfish and barbeque ribs. Aubrey’s offers a wide range of beers on tap, as well as an endless wine list, served by the glass and by the bottle. For more information, please visit www.AubreysRestaurant.com. Located in downtown Maryville, Sullivan’s Fine Food offers guests a variety of fresh, homemade food for lunch and dinner using made-from-scratch recipes. With a wide menu selection from meatloaf, catfish and pot roast to burgers, filet mignon and pasta, as well as a family-friendly dining environment, Sullivan’s will satisfy taste buds of all ages. For more information on Sullivan’s Fine Food in Maryville, please call (865) 681.3334 or visit www.SullivansFineFood.com. If you want a fun restaurant to enjoy a tasty meal, Smoky Mountain Brewery in Maryville is the place to visit. Open every day of the week, Smoky Mountain Brewery offers a menu ranging from snacks and appetizers, burgers, wings and sandwiches to pizzas, calzones, ribs and steaks. A unique feature of Smoky Mountain Brewery is that the restaurant offers its very own Tennessee micro-brewed, handcrafted beers for of-age customers to enjoy with their lunch or dinner entrée. The restaurant also offers a wine and cocktail list. For more information on Smoky Mountain Brewery call (865) 238.1900 or visit www.Smoky-Mtn-Brewery.com. With a variety of local, East Tennessee fare, locals and visitors of Blount County have the opportunity to find something to satisfy their appetites and dining desires. For more information, visit www.SmokyMountains.org.
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Photo location: Dancing Bear Lodge
Photo credit: Sarah Rau Photography
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