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It’s 12:30 p.m. on a beautiful fall Friday in October, and the dining area at Soho Hibachi in Fort Oglethorpe is packed.

I lived in Paris, France, for several years, so it almost goes without saying that dinner is not dinner without wine.

Chattanooga has made huge strides over the past few decades to become a more sophisticated and culturally diverse urban metropolis, supporting a variety of unique culinary styles and restaurants.

CLEVELAND, Tenn. — When I heard Willie and Renee Jenkins had a restaurant called Yesterday’s at Willie’s Deli in the same little strip mall that used to house Jenkins, the 1980s iteration that went by their last name, I thought the place might jog some memories even if it wasn’t the restaurant I remember.

When I realized the retro auto-glass shop on Main Street was for sale, I desperately hoped that some savvy entrepreneur would turn it into something reflecting the flourishing Southside. So I was happy to hear that the Monens of Taco Mamacita and Urban Stack fame would turn this old building into a dive bar called Clyde’s On Main. If anyone could give Clyde’s Auto Glass the second life it deserved, it was the Monens.

It was a bad news/good news moment when I heard Root Kitchen and Wine Bar would be taking the place of the Elemental Restaurant at 2 North Shore.

Just the name World of Beer makes the taste buds start longing for something cold and sudsy.

Want to watch every sporting event going on in the entire world and have your pick of nearly 250 beers? Go to the newly redesigned Taco Mac — now T.Mac — downtown.

I would almost rather gnaw off my arm than pick my way through the glob of traffic that is East Brainerd. That being said, there are some things that will turn my hand. Like a visit to Ross Dress for Less. Or Cheddar’s.

There’s nothing fancy about C&W Cafe, a red brick building on East 23rd Street. But this mom-and-pop business, owned by Carl and Willetta Hill, is where the magic happens at mealtime six days a week, drawing hundreds of customers for good times and captivating home-cooked soul food.

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