One of the questions I am often asked is “Where is the best place to eat in Pigeon Forge?”. With so many restaurants in Pigeon Forge, choosing the right one to dine at is daunting. Many people stick to what they know and pick a chain restaurant while traveling. However, you’re missing out on the best restaurants in Pigeon Forge when you go the safe route.
Branch out and discover the best places to eat in Smokies, all of which are local favorites. From homestyle restaurants to steakhouses and even Italian eateries, these places to eat will leave even the pickiest eaters satisfied.
10 of the Best Restaurants in Pigeon Forge
1) The Old Mill Restaurant
Directions: 164 Old Mill Ave, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
For Southern-style, homemade food, visit The Old Mill Restaurant—by far one of the best restaurants in Pigeon Forge, TN. This throwback eatery is known for its fried chicken, buttery biscuits, and made-from-scratch pies. The atmosphere is a big draw too, as the restaurant is adjacent to the still-in-operation Old Mill. Large, picture windows paint a scene straight out of history.
2) Calhoun’s Restaurant
Directions: 2532 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
Calhoun’s Restaurant offers so many menu options, it’s hard for me to pick a favorite! For greens, the Turkey Creek Salad with strawberries, feta, pecans and pulled turkey is my go-to pick. When I’m craving something more, I order the Pulled Pork Sandwich piled with coleslaw. It’s a huge sandwich, the meat is quite tender and Calhoun’s barbeque sauce’s flavor makes it all come together in a beautiful, culinary harmony.
3) Old Mill Pottery House Café and Grille
Directions: 3341 Old Mill St, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
I already listed the Old Mill Restaurant as a top choice, but this smaller café is also a top pick. I recommend eating lunch at the Old Mill Pottery House Cafe, as it is one of the tastiest you’ll find in Pigeon Forge. In fact, it’s so good many people eat here several times during vacation. I can’t pass up the Chicken Reuben, but the Loaded Baked Potato Soup and homemade quiches are also excellent choices. Add the Lemonade Pie as a sweet end to your meal.
4) Alamo Steakhouse
Directions: 3050 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
Winner of the “best steaks” award several times over, this is the place to go for melt-in-your-mouth grill selections. There are two Smoky Mountain Alamo Steakhouse locations – one in Pigeon Forge and one in Gatlinburg – both of which are tucked away to provide a romantic yet casual place to dine. The aged Black Angus steaks are hand cut in-house, then cooked over an oak grill to sear in the seasons. Be sure to try the Rio Grande Ribeye as well. That is, if you have any room left!
5) Bullfish Grill
Directions: 2441 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
Looking for a nice night out? Bullfish Grill is just the place for you. Known as one of the best restaurants in Pigeon Forge for seafood, the upscale setting is the perfect place to relax with the one you love. Although the menu is a bit more pricey than most you’ll find in the area, it is well worth it. It is hard for me to narrow down a favorite, but some of the best food I’ve had here is the Bacon and Shrimp Flatbread, Bullfish Strawberry Salad, and Asiago Grilled Salmon.
6) Smoky Mountain Brewery
Directions: 2530 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
Popular for lunch and dinner, the options at Smoky Mountain Brewery are classic American. Part sports bar, part live music joint, you can find a variety of entertainment at this restaurant. You’ll also find a wide assortment of in-house microbrews. My favorite is the Mountain Light brew, although the Appalachian Pale Ale is a close second. The burgers here are juicy and delicious, but I love their Baker’s Choice Calzone. If I have room, I order the soft pretzels and beer cheese as an appetizer. No matter what you order, you can’t wrong at this Smoky Mountain staple.
7) Huck Finn’s Catfish
Directions: 3330 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
Famous for all-you-can-eat catfish and chicken dinners, as well as free refills of sweet tea served in mason jars, Huck Finn’s Catfish is simply southern food done right. All-you-can-eat dinners also come with endless side vittles like creamy homemade coleslaw, made from scratch baked white beans, choice of french fries or homemade mashed potatoes and gravy, signature southern hushpuppies, and dill pickles and onions slices. Come hungry! With so much food to try, it’s not hard to see why Huck Finn’s is among the best restaurants in Pigeon Forge.
8) J.T. Hannah’s Kitchen
Directions: 3214 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
One of the newer restaurants in Pigeon Forge, J.T Hannah’s Kitchen was opened in honor of J.T. Hannah, a prosperous businessman in the Great Smoky Mountains. Hearty fare served at a reasonable price is their signature. While dining, admire the rustic décor and old relics decorating the restaurant as you browse their all-American menu. Try the St. Louis Spare Ribs or Smoky Mountain Rainbow Trout.
9) Bennett’s Pit Bar-B-Que
Directions: 2910 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
Have a hankering for barbeque? If so, the award-winning barbeque at Bennett’s will satisfy your cravings. Savory sauces, hickory wood smoked flavors and secret recipes come together to create some of the best barbeque east of Mississippi. Two of my favorite menu items are the Hickory Wings and Beef Brisket. You can’t go wrong with either!
10) Johnny Carino’s
Directions: 2425 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
For seriously delicious Italian food in the Smokies, you can’t beat Johnny Carino’s. If you’re a pasta lover like me, you’ll be torn between all of the menu items. After many nights here, I’ve found two favorites: the Skilletini, a sizzling skillet with spaghetti, spicy marinara sauce, parmesan, marinated peppers and onions; and the Grilled Chicken Bowtie Festival, a bowl of bowtie pasta with sliced chicken, bacon, garlic, red onions, roma tomatoes, and asiago cream sauce. So good!
When you dine at the best restaurants in Pigeon Forge, you’re guaranteed a good meal and a great time.
Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Pigeon Forge to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.