Chattanooga Cheap Eats, Part 1

19 11 2007

I was in Chattanooga for a couple days recently and that means I finally have a chance to try out some new cheap eats!

Our first night there I wanted to hit Bea’s on Dodd’s Ave. for dinner, unfortunately it closed at 8 and it was already 7:30 when we got directions from our hotel. Not this night. But don’t worry, we will make it there!

Going back to the drawing board I found City Cafe Diner Restaurant. This little diner in the middle of downtown is a practice in contradictions. It’s a New dork Diner in the heart of the South. It has gourmet meals of steak and seafood along with greasy spoon specialties. And, the real kicker, it’s great food in a restaurant attached to a Days Inn!

We decided on City Cafe because after my last post on NY Diners, we just had to give a transplanted one a try. With big portions, huge deserts, small prices, great service and tasty food we weren’t disappointed. First, let’s talk about portion size-a key to any true Dave’s Cheap Eats. When the kid’s meal comes out on a full size dinner plate, instead of a little saucer like at most places, you know you’ve found a good value. The kids’ plate was filled with turkey and gravy with home made mashed potatoes. While the turkey and gravy weren’t anything to write home about, except the super-sized portions, the mashed potatoes where bursting with buttery and herb goodness. All that for $4.95!

For Ms. Cheap Eats and I, we settled on a Cajun Wrap which was stuffed with shrimp, onions, and peppers and served with sour cream and salsa. While Cajun wasn’t the best foody term, that would be spicy, it didn’t make it any less good. The huge wrap filled our plate, and our stomachs, with diner goodness.

But wait, there’s more. The first thing you see walking into the City Cafe Diner are the desserts. Oh, these glorious 6″ high cheese cakes, red velvet cakes, carrot cakes, and every other cake you could imagine are just sitting in plain view, tempting you away from your diner dinner. We couldn’t resist. We let the kids pick out their favorite, a towering slice of Oreo cheesecake for $5.95. Ok, that may sound a little steep, but divide that by five because even all of us put together couldn’t finish the piece of cake. You know it’s big when three kids can’t finish off one piece of cake!

City Cafe Diner. 901 Carter St, Chattanooga, TN 37402. 423-634-9191



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