Friday, April 28, 2017

Big River Grille and Brewing Works

As we headed back up to East Tennessee following our adventures in Florida, I’d planned to stop for lunch in downtown Chattanooga. 

It turns out that downtown Chattanooga has a plethora of metered parking.  I finally found a spot near the restaurant that I wanted to try.  However, the meter didn’t like us much.  I followed instructions but it wouldn’t print out a slip for me to put on my windshield!  Somewhat aggravated, we got back in the car and drove around looking for a parking lot (all metered) or a parking luck!  Finally, frustrated and impatient, we gave up and headed for the suburbs!

We’d already eaten at a couple of different restaurants in the Hamilton Place Shopping area in the northern suburbs of Chattanooga and I was determined to find something new.  This is Big River Grille and Brewing Works. 

With muted colors plus lots of stone and wood…along with a fireplace…the spacious interior of Big River Grille does have a bit of a mountain river or north woods feel to it.  Since we were a bit late for lunch, it wasn’t very busy.

With only 3 locations, Big River Grille and Brewing Works is just a small part of the CraftWorks Restaurants and Breweries Inc. conglomerate.    Craftworks is a multi-state, multi-brand restaurant operator with a combined total of 195 restaurants, brewery restaurants and entertainment venues.  Other brands operated by CraftWorks include Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurants, Rock Bottom Restaurants and Breweries and Old Chicago Pizza and Taproom.

We decided to start out with an appetizer… After all, this was our last hooray for this trip and we’d have to go back to a more healthy diet and our exercise routine!

We like good fried calamari.  Big River’s Calamari and Pepper Rings was a nice switch from the usual. ($10.59) It featured tender calamari mixed with fried jalapeño rings which added a nice bit of heat…something we both appreciate.  The calamari was served with some nice roasted jalapeño ranch dipping sauce.

After the appetizer, we weren’t all that imaginative when it came to main course.  Not being in an adventuresome mood, we both ordered hamburgers.  This was the Smashed and Stacked version…with 2 hamburger patties, signature pub sauce, shaved pickles and lots of cheddar cheese. ($11.99)  It was a better than average burger.

The luncheon menu at Big River Grille is extensive.  It lists 14 appetizers, 10 salads, 7 pizzas, 6 “Brewer’s Suggestions”, 11 main dishes and a dozen different sandwiches along with a few dessert options.

This was the Classic Burger…2 patties loaded with a ton of cheddar cheese. ($11.99) It was a little overcooked for us…we like them medium rare but we forgot to tell the waiter…but it was still nice and juicy.  The French fries were a bit better than the norm as well. 

One really can’t definitively judge a restaurant after an appetizer and a couple of burgers but we enjoyed our limited exposure to the options on the menu,as well as the relaxing and inviting atmosphere.  The dinner menu is basically an expansion of the lunch menu with the addition of some grill items such as steak and seafood. 

Big River Grille and Brewing Works at Chattanooga’s Hamilton Place is located at 2020 Hamilton Place Boulevard.  Phone: 423-553-7723.  Website:

Just click on any of the photos to enlarge them…

Thanks for stopping by for a visit!

Take Care, Big Daddy Dave


  1. I love the friendly and warm ambiance, Dave! I have never tried calamari. The burger dishes look and sound delicious! Thank you so much for sharing, I really enjoy your posts.