Orders due by Nov. 16
Countryside Café is preparing to celebrate the holidays with diners with a catering menu that makes the holidays easier and tastier for everyone.
"The holidays are a time to celebrate with family and friends, so let us help you with your holiday plans," says Marlene Geren, who owns the restaurant with her husband Ponder; the help of their sons David and Daniel makes it a true family affair. "We will offer holiday catering for our guests and for special groups."
Countryside is able to accommodate 30 to 35 diners for small parties in house, but the restaurant can cater for up to 200 at an off-site facility.
Marlene Geren says the restaurant is not open for regular business on Sundays, but that it can be opened to host special events such as Sunday school programs. Guests are urged to call early to arrange dates for their groups, because the popular restaurant already has events booked for the season.
Leading up to Thanksgiving, guests dining in can take their time filling out a catering order on the restaurant's new order guide, which makes a holiday menu easy to plan. Orders can also be made over the phone or faxed to 344-4789. All orders must be received by Nov. 16.
The menu includes meats such as chicken and dressing, sliced or whole turkey as well as pit, whole and half ham. The restaurant's famous casseroles - sweet potato, broccoli, hash brown, corn pudding and green bean - are available as well as freshly prepared vegetables, dressing and gravy, rolls and cornbread muffins. A holiday wouldn't be sweet without pies, cakes, cobblers and puddings, which guests can order in their favorite seasonal flavor, including pecan, pumpkin and apple.
"We have been doing this for several years," Marlene Geren says. "We have a good idea what people want for the holidays and we try to make that a special day by helping them prepare what they need according to their dinner size and their family's preferences."
Countryside is closed Thanksgiving Day, but guests' orders are available for pickup the day before Thanksgiving, Nov. 23, by 8 p.m. Countryside receives so many orders that a system has been created where guests are given a specific pickup hour. Guests can come and wait, but they are encouraged to sit at a table and relax over lunch or dinner while the final touches on their order are finished.
Geren says she is looking forward to completing yet another successful holiday season and continuing to serve Countryside customers the freshest, tastiest food possible.
"Thanks again for voting us as finalist for the Chattanooga Times Free Press' 'Best of Best' in two categories: best meat-and-three and best country cooking," she says. "We appreciate our loyal customers who tell us how much they appreciate our hand peeled potatoes, fresh cooked beans and skillet fried okra and sweet potatoes."
LOCATION: 8223 Mahan Gap Road.
HOURS: Monday through Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
NICE TO KNOW: Countryside is closed Thanksgiving Day; all special orders should be picked up the day before