Calhoun’s Taste of Tennessee 10020 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 1 (865) 673-3444
It was a get-together of the Tennessee Holt and the Florida Jones clans. I was a tagalong in-law. But if someone wants to take me out to dinner, well, that’s alright with me. The Holts had frequented Calhoun’s before and on their recommendation it was all agreed. The Kingston Pike Calhoun’s, with the signature red silo, is the original restaurant. It opened in 1983. It is part of the Coppe
r Cellar family of restaurants with sixteen locations across Ten
nessee. They advertise their credo, serve simple foods, use the finest quality ingredients, serve the guests in a clean attractive atmosphere, and make sure the guests leave satisfied. They are also proud that their baby back ribs have won the title Best Ribs in America at the National Rib Cook-Off. The Calhoun’s décor is rural, farming, back-woodsy Tennessee.
A call ahead for a party of nine was a wise choice. They are a busy restaurant. The staff quickly seated us in their semi-private banquet room in the loft. We were the only guests in that part of the dining area but the serving staff never forgot that we were there. The menu is best described as steak house/barbecue with local dishes, such as Smoky Mountain Beans or Tennessee Corn Pudding, to accent the menu selections.
The wife a
nd I chose prime rib (market price), rare. Steaks and prime rib
come with choice of potato and one side dish. I chose baked potato with all the fixings and broccoli which was served with a cheese sauce. The wife selected a house salad. The prime rib was a nice thick center section slab. The meat was tender and was good prime rib. A ramekin of jus complimented the meat very well. The baked potato and broccoli were more than adequate. It was an enjoyable meal, in quantity sufficient to make me pass on dessert.
Cousin Jef chose baby back ribs (1/2 slab $12.99, full slab $19.99). The baby back ribs come with slaw and a choice of a side dish. It is a good portion of ribs that nearly fills the plate. The meat was tender and separated from the bone easily. The meat was tasty and required a minimum of sauce. The ribs required a request for more napkins.
Cousin Steve ordered a sausage brochette. I didn’t get a chance to sample it but it looked inviting. Spicy sausage slices with onion, peppers and tomato wedges, grilled on skewers, and served on a bed of yellow squash and noodles. He gave it a hearty thumbs-up.
Every one enjoyed their meal. It was a long lingering meal but we never felt rushed by the serving staff. All in all, the food looked good and tasted good. The service staff was courteous and prompt, we had adequate seating for a large party and they did make sure these guests left satisfied. If you are hungry and driving past Calhoun’s, it would make a good choice for dinner.