For the first time in years, the restaurants at the Bluff View Art District will be closed on Dec. 25. But Santa's elves will be busy at several other places come Christmas Day.
The biggest spread, by far, will be at The Chattanoogan, 1201 Broad St., which ushers in a magnificent holiday spread in the ballroom. The salad bar will be filled with assorted salads, seafood choices and cheeses, while entrees will include chef-carved bone-in ham, eggs Benedict, coffee-rubbed beef tenderloin, rotisserie chicken and a made-to-order omelet station. Sides, too numerous to mention all, will include cornbread pudding, slow-roasted spaghetti squash and tri-color potato hash. For dessert? Assorted flavors of Clumpies ice cream, peppermint bark mousse cake and vanilla bean cheesecake. Cost: $45 adults, $20 children 5-12, under 5 free. Hours: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Reservations: 423-424-3700.
Several restaurants open for Christmas are serving off their regular menus. They include:
» Dorato at The Westin, 801 Pine St. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. 423-531-4653.
» Beast + Barrel, 16 Frazier Ave., 2-11 p.m. 423-805-4599.
» Big River Grille, 222 Broad St. location only, 4-10 p.m. 423-267-2739.
» Buffet King, 5230 Highway 153, 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. 423-877-8816.
» Chef Lin, 5084 South Terrace, 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. 423-510-1998.
» China Rose, 9203 Lee Highway, Ooltewah, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Cash only. 423-238-1268.
» City Cafe Diner, 901 Carter St., 634-9191; 7641 Lee Highway, 423-485-8222; and 919 25th St., Cleveland, 423-790-7460. All open 24 hours.
» Hair of the Dog Pub, 334 Market St., 5 p.m.-3 a.m. 423-265-4615.
» Honest Pint, 35 Patten Parkway, 5 p.m.-2 a.m. (Last call for food and drink 1:30 a.m.) 423-468-4192.
» Huddle House, all locations, 24 hours.
» IHOP, 5814 Brainerd Road, 423-490-0559; 5113 Highway 153, 423-877-4732; both open at noon, then 24 hours a day.
» New China Buffet and Grill, 3450 Cummings Highway, 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. 423-821-6988.
» Ruth's Chris Steakhouse, 2321 Lifestyle Way, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; dinner menu served all day; 423-602-5900. Reservations are a good idea.
» Sweet Basil Thai, 5845 Brainerd Road, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. 423-485-8836.
» The Big Chill, 103 Cherokee Blvd., 4 p.m.-3 a.m. 423-267-2445.
» Waffle House, all locations, 24 hours.
» Fuji Steakhouse, 5437 Highway 153, noon-10 p.m. 423-531-3183.
» New China, 8530 Hixson Pike, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. 423-843-0586.
ON THE MENU
It had been several years since I dined at Cleveland's Bald Headed Bistro, so on a return trip from North Carolina, my husband and I decided to swing by for a quick dinner. Chef Eric Fulkerson has done an amazing job of devising a menu with a little bit of everything for every palate, but I must recommend the pork belly and Brussels sprouts appetizer.
The Brussels sprouts are flash-fried, then placed on a plate and drizzled with an amazing garlic-chile mustard sauce before being topped with slices of pork belly that's been cured for a week, then smoked in a Big Green Egg smoker for eight hours. Talk about a great start to a meal!
Bald Headed Bistro is at 201 Keith St. With the busy holiday season of parties and other gatherings now in progress, I would imagine reservations would be a good idea. Call ahead: 423-472-6000.
Following last week's column with a recipe for wintertime sangria, I've received several emails from readers saying they are having problems finding Santa Margherita Chianti. I had trouble finding it in town as well, but the problem was quickly resolved when I asked my neighborhood liquor store, 1 Stop Package at 8425 Dayton Pike in Soddy-Daisy, if they could order some.
Sure enough, it's now on the shelves. And honestly, I can't think of a better Chianti that pairs well any meal and is excellent for sipping during this holiday season and beyond. If you don't find it on the shelves at your favorite wine shop, ask the management to order some — or stop by 1 Stop.
Contact Anne Braly at firstname.lastname@example.org.