For Chattanoogans, weekends are synonymous with sleeping in, a hike or jog around the park, and brunch. Fortunately, brunch is never hard to come by; less fortunately, how do you choose between so many fantastic restaurants? Whether you’re in the mood for an Insta-worthy pancake stack, or some $1 mimosas are calling your name, there’s a Scenic City brunch spot with your name on it.
Tucked away in a residential neighborhood in Riverview sits Aretha Frankensteins – a delightfully unassuming establishment that delivers on portions and taste. Although Aretha’s has a generous breakfast menu featuring omelets, biscuits, and a customizable breakfast burrito, it’s the monstrous inch-thick pancakes that make this spot famous. Order a stack to share – and top it with the house-made blueberry mélange if you’re feeling fancy – and you’ll be sure to leave with a full stomach and a smile.
The Bitter Alibi
Served from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., weekend brunch at The Bitter Alibi feels like an occasion. It’s fun, it’s energetic, and it’s full of creative cuisine, including a maple donut sandwich, a coffee-crusted burger, and a breakfast ramen bowl featuring crispy pork belly and a soft boiled egg, all of which is complemented by warm and friendly service. Whether you need a quick bite or would prefer to brunch the day away, The Bitter Alibi has a table ready for you.
Family-run Bluegrass Grill rewards those determined enough to brave the line that inevitably forms after 9 a.m. with a delicious made-from-scratch breakfast. That’s right – all of the biscuits, baked goods, and loaves of bread are made fresh in-house each morning. Meat-eaters will love the corned beef hash, while the hearty tofu hash caters to plant-based dieters (or anyone who thinks tofu can’t taste good – you’re wrong). Note that BG is closed on Sundays, so if you’re brunching, make your plans for Saturday and stay strong. It’s worth the wait.
The Daily Ration
Sister restaurant to The Bitter Alibi, The Daily Ration has been a Chattanooga brunch darling since 2016. With its stunning outdoor patio and a mouthwatering menu, it’s not hard to see why. Popular dishes like the Kimchi Rice Bowl, Fried Chicken & Waffles, and Blueberry Flapjacks keep locals coming back again and again, but for those who can’t make up their minds, the Brunch Sampler (three biscuits and five beignets with various jams and butters) is the perfect way to start the meal.
The Feed Co. Table & Tavern
This Southside neighborhood hang offers a relaxed, casual atmosphere as well as a bang-up brunch on Saturdays and Sundays. Brunch drinks like Frozen Head & Struggle Bus Bloody Mary and the Cereal Killer (White Russian infused with your choice of cereal) pair well with the Strawberry Shortcake, The Company Benedict, and the Short Ribs & Grits. The Feed Co. offers different menus to the Saturday and Sunday crowds, so plan ahead to make sure your preferred dish is being prepared that day.
You have one opportunity each week to partake in brunch at Flying Squirrel – Sundays from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. – so best make it count. Grits with shrimp or mushrooms, butternut squash empanadas, and a brunch okonomiyaki (Japanese savory pancake) are just a few of the items you’ll find on the refreshingly creative menu, while brunch booze options include a sriracha bloody mary, mimosas, and the Heartshaker (vodka, velo cold brew, nola coffee liqueur, crème de cacao). There’s plenty of patio dining space to be enjoyed on sunny days, too.
Frothy Monkey didn’t originate in Chattanooga, but the Southside staple sure feels at home inside the Chattanooga Choo Choo. The all-day café makes for the perfect brunch locale any (or every) day of the week, and with delicious entrées including Loaded Biscuits, the Grit Bowl, and Huevos Rolandos, why wouldn’t you? In addition to the café, Frothy Monkey wears the hat of specialty coffee roaster, and its signature coffee is a highlight.
Food Works is known for its inventive Southern fare and great aesthetic – the restaurant is housed in a converted mill, after all. But weekend brunch is where this establishment really shines. Choose between favorites like the Coconut Rum French Toast, Smoked Beef Brisket Hash, or the Classic Country Benedict (fried grit cake, sausage patty, poached egg, red-eye hollandaise). And don’t miss out on the Brunch Drink Special –champagne and mimosas are only $2 after a food purchase of $12 or more.
Specializing in sandwiches and fresh local ingredients, Kenny’s has only been a part of the Chattanooga brunch scene for a few years, but the restaurant has already established itself as a must-try thanks to the work of owners Kenny Burnap – long-time sous chef at St. John’s – and Josh Carter. What the breakfast menu lacks in length, it more than makes up for in quality offerings. The croque madame, made with city ham, gruyere, béchamel, egg, herbs, and sourdough, is particularly a treat.
Milk & Honey
The recently revamped Milk & Honey is what Instagram dreams are made of – think lime green booths and retro mosaic tiled walls. The Northshore establishment also revamped its menu, which now includes fun items like rosé waffles and pork confit poutine alongside more traditional items like fried chicken biscuits, cheesy omelets, and sourdough toast. With double the amount of seating and a full bar, Milk & Honey is more than prepared to take on the weekend brunch crowd. Don’t forget to order a homemade strawberry pop tart to go!
Niedlov’s Bakery & Café
When they’re not baking bread for nearly every restaurant in town, the artisans at Neidlov’s Bakery & Café are serving up some of the best Saturday brunch in Chattanooga. Order an almond croissant or a cruffin – a cross between a croissant and a muffin – to tide you over while you agonize over the menu. With options ranging from avocado toast to eggs benedict and the B.E.C. (scrambled local egg, sharp cheddar, bacon, paprika aioli, roasted red peppers, and frisée on a toasted baguette), it’s impossible to go wrong.
If you’re planning to participate in Sunday brunch at SideTrack, located in the heart of North Chattanooga, you better come with an empty stomach. The meal wouldn’t be complete without an order of beignets – fried to order and dusted with powdered sugar. Locals also love the whipped feta dip as an app, but leave plenty of room for mains like the brioche French toast, eggs in purgatory, and chicken and waffles. Meanwhile, unique cocktails such as “The Dude” (coffee, ice, vodka, kahlua, and milk) will keep you on your toes.
State of Confusion
There’s no confusion when it comes to State of Confusion’s status as a top brunch destination, and with both indoor and outdoor seating, pups of all sizes can join in on the fun! Whether you go sweet (looking at you, Strawberry Funnel Cake) or savory (may we recommend the Confusion Benedict?), a side of Confusion Potatoes is a must. Wash everything down with a mimosa or a bloody mary before continuing your tour of Chattanooga’s Southside district.
Housed inside the historic Chattanooga Choo Choo, STIR serves lunch, dinner, and, of course, brunch. Locals come for the $1 mimosas but stay for the out-of-the-box offerings such as the Southern Grits Tamales and the Breakfast Chicken Piccata. Fresh oysters, also available at lunch and dinner, are on the brunch menu and aren’t to be missed. Take your brunch on the restaurant’s private terrace when it’s warm, or stay indoors and enjoy STIR’s eclectic aesthetic that beautifully blends the old with the new.
Syrup and Eggs
There are pancakes, and then there are Syrup and Eggs pancakes – creations that are as much art as food. Take, for example, the Orange You Glad It’s a Poppy Seed Pancake (citrus-poppy seed pancake, warm blueberries, candied sunflower seeds, and lemon-vanilla butter) or the Blue Cornmeal “Taco” Pancakes (blue cornmeal pancakes, sunny eggs, sour cream, pickled jalapeños, maple pico, cilantro), and you get the idea. This brunch haven also serves up plenty of vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options to keep your whole party nourished and happy.
Tupelo Honey hosts a Southern-inspired brunch beginning at 9 a.m. on the weekends. While the carefully curated menu offers something new each season, the melt-in-your-mouth cathead buttermilk biscuits are always on tap and should be enjoyed alongside the Tupelo Shrimp & Grits, Fried Chicken & Waffles, or the ‘Old Skool’ Breakfast Bowl (featuring two sunny-side up eggs, Parmesan and rosemary potato cracklin’s, cheddar cheese, chopped bacon, salsa, and roasted red pepper sauce over heirloom grits with goat cheese).
With one of the buzziest brunches in town, Whitebird dispels the saying that you can have too much of a good thing. An elegant setting, artful culinary creations, and crafty cocktails work together to deliver a memorable meal. The classic brunch cuisine – including biscuits and gravy, shrimp and grits, and a pancetta and cheddar omelet – honors the region we live in by incorporating fresh, local ingredients and familiar cooking methods. Brunch at Whitebird can be enjoyed on Saturdays and Sundays from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m.