MAKINO ON KINGSTON PIKE

Yeah, I know…..  A Chinese buffet….. Reallllllly ?  Well, we were in the mood, what can I say.  Make a long story short, it was clean as a whistle, the service was excellent, even though our waitress was a little hard to understand, and the food was good.  No complaints.  The sushi came out quickly, the tuna tataki was cooked beautifully, the salmon and albacore sashimi was buttery and wonderful…  Even the “beef sashimi” was very tender and tasty.  The Foodies had a nice experience, so, we say “Go there !!”

CHANDLER’S DELI ON MAGNOLIA

The Foodies had a chance to visit this Knoxville landmark today for a short business meeting.  Lunch time.  Crowded doesn’t begin to tell it.  Anyway, placed our order with an exceptionally pleasant young woman who explained the menu and the specials of the day.    Food was delivered very quickly and was received nice and warm.  Now, the mac and cheese was great, the  brocolli and cheese casserole was like Mom used to make.  The fried chicken was a little dry, however.  Possibly due to being prepped in advance for the lunch rush.  Don’t get me wrong, the taste was excellent, but the meat was a little dry for my taste.  The ribs, on the other hand, were dynamite.  Sauce was good, meat was tender as a mother’s love.  Will we go back ?  The Foodies say “Sure, what the heck – why not…”

RIVERVIEW GRILL IN CLINTON

The Foodies have been meaning to get out to the Riverview Grill for some time, but, well, you know how it is…  I got there today with Foodie JR and OH MY GOD, where has this little place been all my life ??!!  The Owner used to be the Proprietor of one of our favorite haunts, so it’s no surprise the food is good, but the Bar-B-Q is just outrageous !!  Big, smoky portions of pulled pork and ribs, excellent light hush puppies, potato salad – yum. Foodie JR says best ribs he’s ever had and, believe you me, this kid has had some ribs !!  As you enter, you get the smells of hickory and oak smoke, with crusty meat dripping on the fire.  I’m telling you, it was carnivore Nirvana.

And a word about our waitress – Brianna. A charming, home-grown cutie with a personality to match. Delightful service with a big smile.  The Foodies appreciate that. 

And the view of the river is particularly pleasant, there’s a veranda to sit on and admire the scenery.

All in all, an excellent experience that we’re gonna repeat this weekend.  Taking Mrs Foodie and Foodie Dad there to sample the fare.  They’ll be impressed too.  The Foodies say “YA GOTTA GO THERE !!”

AND HERE’S A REPLY FROM OLIVE GARDEN…. VERY PROFESSIONAL

Dear Knoxville Foodies:

Thank you for writing to us. At Olive Garden, we’re thrilled to learn when we’ve delighted our guests!

One of our goals at Olive Garden is to provide a genuine Italian dining experience. We were so happy to learn Ryan exceeded your expectations by expressing genuine care and concern that you were enjoying your meal.

Our General Manager and the entire team at our Kingston restaurant will share in recognizing Ryan for a job well done serving you this past Saturday.

The team will also be so happy to know how much you all enjoyed your entrees, especially the Pappardelle Pescatore.  Also, we are so sorry to hear about the accidental spill by our server at your table! It is great to hear this did not spoil your visit out for the day!

We know you have a choice when it comes to selecting a restaurant and appreciate your having chosen us. Our ongoing commitment is to always treat you like a valued member of the Olive Garden family.

Sincerely,

Bridget
Olive Garden Guest Relations

OLIVE GARDEN IN BEARDEN

Well, we took my Dad to Olive Garden in Bearden today.  We were told it would be a 20 minute wait, as they were quite busy, but, surprisingly it was only about 10.  Good so far.  We were seated and assigned our waitress, Ryan.  Very pleasant young lady, from New Orleans, knew the menu front and back, so she made several excellent suggestions for our meal. 

Mrs Foodie and I had the Pappardelle Pescatore – noodles and fish (clams, scallops shrimp in a spicy tomato sauce).  Nice and zippy, lots of scallops and clams.  Dad got the Lasagna Fresca and didn’t leave one bite.  Kids got the Seafood Alfredo and Portabello Ravioli.  Also, clean plates. 

The highlight of the meal was an unfortunate incident involving a tea pitcher and a water pitcher.  As in, got them poured on me.  Sploosh !!!  Please understand, I’m not one of those pricks that would have demanded the meal free.  It was funny as hell, honestly…. Got a tea/water shower and a free dessert…

All in all, we had fun and the meal was nice.  The Foodies say “Go there, Ask for Ryan, and look out for rogue tea pitchers !!!”

CHOP HOUSE – SOUTH KNOXVILLE

We had the chance to visit the Chop House in South Knoxville for the first time in several years last weekend.  Let me say, first, that the place was very clean and well-presented. We were greeted immediately by a friendly hostess and seated promptly.  Our waitress was Corey – a pleasant young lady who, after only a moment or so, apparently was cut by a broken glass in the kitchen (she was OK, but was sent home injured) and so, we got a new waitress named Katie.  She said she was not usually a waitress but, rather, a hostess.  Well, let me say, hostess or not, she has a wonderful personality and helped to make our dining experience fun and memorable.  She knew the menu and made some good suggestions.

Oh, the food was good, too.  I had the petite lamb chops – cooked rare, with creamed spinach.  Cooked perfectly and very tasty.  Mrs. Foodie had the seafood pasta.  She says the full size portion is HUGE, and the dish was very tasty. 

So, the Foodies say “Take a trip to South Knoxville and ask for Katie !!”

HARRAH’S CHEROKEE CASINO BUFFET – CHEROKEE, NC

I know, I know….  what in the hell are you doing reviewing a casino buffet ?  Kinda silly, right ?  Well,the Foodies took a road trip today and went over the hill to Cherokee.  Lose a little $$ at the slots and have some seafood.  I gotta tell you, the shrimp were excellent, seasoned well and cooked right, so were the mussels and even the crab legs were good.  Not my favorite thing, but they were done well.  Jerry the waiter was exemplary.  Excellent service, friendly attitude – all around good waiter.  I’m gonna write the casino manager and tell him about Jerry.  Too many times, restaurants only hear the bad shit – so, I’m gonna tell him that he has a good employee.  And that his buffet was really quite good…  The Foodies say “WHY NOT !!”