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I've been hearing about Mainx24 since I moved here last January, so what better way to prepare myself for the December 7 festivities than exploring another part of Main Street this month? I'm a huge fan of Alleia and the Main Street Farmer's Market, but save for short drive-bys, I haven't stopped in at most of Chattanooga's favorite haunts. Here, I right those wrongs and take a trip to Southside.

1. Niedlov's Bakery

215 E. Main Street, 756-0303

Maybe it's the summer I spent in Paris, but I simply cannot resist the allure of a buttery, flakey croissant. But let's face it, I'm in Chattanooga, not dropping into my favorite patisserie on Rue de Sevres, so my options here are slim.

Walking into Niedlov's was like reuniting with a part of myself that's been long missing. The smell of bread, not just any bread, but artisan dough baked to perfection fills me up.

Niedlov's, I know you tried to sell me on the triple chocolate brownie right out of the oven (and really who can resist), but the almond croissant was perfectly flaky, buttery and savory. And complete with the powdered sugar dusting my table, shirt and camera, I was in heaven. Sigh.

2. Main Street Meats (aka Link 41)

217 E. Main Street, 423-322-5525

As a self-taught home cook and general all around food lover I'm always in search of the perfect meal. For fall, pots of braised meats and hearty roasts are on my list, but it can be difficult to find a proper cut of meat right for the job. And how else am I going to wow my guests with a Frenched pork loin roast if I can't even find one?

Enter Main Street Meats, an expansion and rebranding of Main Street's Link 41 sausage and bacon house. Partnering with Cloudcrest Farms, the shop operates as a butcher, complete with a meat case and endless options all supporting local and sustainable farming. Ground lamb? Check. Pork tenderloin? Check. Happy home chef? Check.

3. Flying Squirrel

55 Johnson Street

Unless you've been living under a rock, you know about the Flying Squirrel, a small plates restaurant and bar next to the Southside's Crash Pad that opened last spring. While it's a little difficult to get to now with all of the road construction going on, it's still a favorite spot to wet your whistle. House-infused spirits along with a bevy of unique brews are just part of the charm this place has to offer.

The fact that the restaurant donated the impervious pavers that will soon line Johnson Street as part of a partnership with the city of Chattanooga is one more reason to love this place.

4. Planet Altered

48 E. Main Street, 423-400-4100

I don't need to tell you that it's never too early to start Christmas shopping or that you'll still be procrastinating well into December. Instead of that tie you're going to give dad or that salad bowl your sister wants, why not try something a little different? Planet Altered is different, to say the least. This eclectic, working art studio and gallery hybrid is energetic, fun and inspiring. Instead of your banal art gallery with white walls and perfectly curated art, Planet Altered offers a different point of view and a great resource for finding something different for your favorite aunt this season.

Learn More About Mainx24 Find events schedules and more details about the 7th annual Mainx24 block party at mainx24.com.

Don't Miss These:

HART Gallery 110

E Main Street/ 423-521-4707

Alleia

25 E. Main Street/ 423-305-6990

Estate of Confusion

301 E. Main Street/ 423-266-7846

Bluegrass Grill

55 E. Main Street/ 423-752-4020

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