Saturday, May 16, 2009

Drive Across the Smokeys

After a great breakfast burger in Greenville at the Northgate Soda Shop, we headed north toward Asheville. Pulling into town after a beautiful trip up through the hills, we found our next destination. I usually don’t do two burgers in a day, but I really wanted to try the burger at Burgermeister's in Asheville. Most of the reviews on line had been good and it sounded like a cool place. Sure enough when we pulled up it looked like a lot of fun with a big burger sign and blue and white façade.

My excitement faded as I noticed only a carpet-cleaning truck parked in front. Sure enough they were closed. I went inside and asked the manager what the scoop was. “Always closed on Tuesday’s.” He said. My burger bad luck continued.

Mom and I enjoyed Asheville and had a very nice lunch in the river district at the Clingman Cafe, but I couldn’t help thinking of my lost opportunity.

We set off for Knoxville, making our way through Smokey Mountain National Park. I had never been here before ad the country really is beautiful all verdant and spring lively.

As we drove over the river into Knoxville, we saw a restaurant right on the river. Calhoun’s. We made our way to the parking lot after a few wrong turns. Calhoun’s is a barbeque place, but claimed to have a great burger. I wanted to try their barbeque, so we ordered up a burger as an appetizer before the brisket. Our server was a lovely young lady who had moved out from California, and told us how at 25 she already owned three houses and was working in the restaurant to keep busy in the evenings.

She brought out the burger first. It looked impressive, but a little overcooked. I figured it was just the fact that it was cooked on a charcoal grill. I cut it in half and verified that it was overcooked. Biting in, it was dry and tasted like charcoal and not much else. The brisket was similarly overcooked and Mom had to send back her ribs because they too were overcooked. Our server cheerily replaced the ribs and we finished dinner. Really the service and the great views of the river were the only thing to recommend Calhoun’s.

Thank goodness I had opted for my breakfast burger at Northgate that morning.

Burger 1.5 spatulas out of 5

400 Neyland Drive
Knoxville, TN