Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Chapman’s Restaurant – Seymour Tennessee

Some time ago, one of our home maintenance service providers told us that a restaurant that we had really liked had re-opened in Seymour under a different name.  The best news was that it was being operated by the same owner and chef that had it previously…

This is Chapman’s Restaurant…which is appropriately named after “Chapman Highway” (US Hwy. 441 South), the major road that runs by the front of this location.  At one point a couple of years ago or so, it was called “Willie’s Restaurant” and Willy Laboy was the proprietor.  We loved Willy’s but hated the fact that it was such a long drive from our home. 

The inside of Chapman’s has changed a bit since we’d visited it as its first iteration as Willy’s and one subsequent time under new management.  However, the log cabin interior look along the walls has stayed the same.

There are 2 dining areas.  This one was where we sat but the other side now features high backed booths and the salad bar along one wall is gone.  This was a weekday and we arrived for dinner at about 5:30 PM.  Chapman’s was packed!

Our friends Jodie and Morrie accompanied us on this exploratory but hopeful visit to Chapman’s… Would the food measure up to its previous standards?

As was the practice under its original name, the waitress started us out with some garlic knots and marinara sauce.  We love these little garlic laden rolls!  I “had” to eat 2 of them because Jodie doesn’t really like much garlic in her food…

Each couple ordered a couple of appetizers to share… This was an order of Fried Calamari with marinara sauce. ($8.99) I’d eaten a couple of pieces before I took the photo.  The calamari was better than average and the price was right in comparison to other restaurants…

This appetizer was the big winner!!  This is an order of coconut shrimp. ($8.99) Count them…there are 12 big juicy coconut shrimp perfectly done and served with sweet chili sauce.  Amazing!  This appetizer was a hit with Laurie’s sisters too when we ate at Chapman’s in early May.

This is the Lobster Ravioli. ($12.99) Laurie ordered it as her main course.  She said that it was good but she couldn’t decide if it wasn’t as good as she remembered from before or if she’s just a bit burned out on this dish in general.

On our subsequent visit to Chapman’s, Laurie’s sister Bonnie also opted for the Lobster Ravioli.  She agreed with Laurie that it just wasn’t as good as it was when the restaurant was called Willie’s.  She missed the actual pieces of lobster vs. what she termed a mushy filling and she thought that the pasta itself was thicker or heavier… 

I went with my “Willy’s” all-time favorite.  This is the Shrimp Fra Diavlo. ($9.99) I forgot to order penne paste instead of fettuccini…as I’m less likely to ‘wear’ sauce from penne vs. fettuccini noodles. (However, I managed to avoid dripping on my shirt on this occasion)

I asked for my shrimp fra diavlo to be extra spicy…enough to make my bald pate sweat.  The chef delivered and my entrée was excellent!  FYI…Willy should know something about pasta and Italian food as he moved to East Tennessee from Queens NY.   I ordered it again when we took Laurie’s sisters here for dinner in early May and I wasn’t disappointed.  

Morrie ordered the Chopped Steak Dinner with 2 sides. ($8.99) He really liked the chopped steak.  For his sides he had a house salad and the sweet potato casserole.   

Jodie mistakenly ordered the Chicken and Shrimp Carbonara thinking that it was a tomato sauce rather than a tomato cream sauce. ($11.99) As it turned out, Jodie doesn’t like tomato cream sauce.  However, the waitress made Jodie very happy by offering to replace it with something that Jodie would prefer even though Jodie admittedly didn’t focus on this entrée’s description…

Jodie’s replacement entrée was this order of Chicken Parmesan. ($9.99) She really liked it and cleaned her plate!  It looked good to me too…  Note: Over the top customer service!!

When we dined at Chapman’s in early May with Laurie’s sisters, Karole chose the Shrimp Alfredo for her entrée. ($11.99)  The serving was so large that she couldn’t finish all the pasta…but she did wipe out the shrimp.  She liked her dinner a lot!

On our second visit, since Laurie knew that she didn’t care for the current version of Lobster Ravioli, she decided to order the Chicken Alfredo. ($10.99)  She did like it and she took home part of it for a subsequent dinner of leftovers.

One thing that had improved since Willy last operated a restaurant in this location was the desserts being offered.  While we skipped dessert with Laurie's sisters, we all indulged when we dined here with Jodie and Morrie.  A couple of local ladies bake pies and other desserts for Chapman’s customers.  This was the Chocolate Oreo Pie! ($3.49)

I don’t recall what this was called but it was a cheesecake with chocolate and it was reported to be very good indeed!

 I ordered a slice of Annette’s Coconut Pie. ($3.49) I haven’t had a slice of coconut pie that tasted this good in years!  Laurie loved it too!  Laurie and I would have ordered a couple slices of this pie to go when we visited Chapman's with her sisters, but they were sold out...

Willy is back!  Chapman’s is a great place to eat.  It’s very casual, service is efficient, (bending over backwards to please the customer is our case), the food is way above average especially for the price, you can’t beat the pasta dishes…especially here in East Tennessee…and the menu is huge!  We’ll be back soon.  Laurie is vowing to try the non-Italian side of the menu…

Chapman’s Restaurant is located at 10321 Chapman Highway (US Hwy 411 South) in Seymour Tennessee.  Phone: 865-577-1700.  Website:  Chapman’s is also on Facebook (complete with the menu) at

Just click on any of the photos to enlarge them…

Thanks for stopping by for a visit!

Take Care, Big Daddy Dave


  1. Glad one of your favorite places is back and still good.

  2. The shrimp looks delicious, Dave, and the other dishes look pretty good as well!

  3. Your bellies were full. Everything looks good. Local establishments are the best. Love finding gems like this one when traveling. Or better yet, right here in my hometown.
    Thanks for sharing.


  4. Glad you liked it! It's always a plus to have a good restaurant near by! The chopped steak looks good to me.

  5. Boy oh boy! What a feast :D I can't remember the last time I had coconut shrimp but I do remember the first time I had quickly became one of my favorites! Everything looks so good...I'd love to check out a place like Chapman's. Hugs to you and Laurie!


  6. Dear Dave, Sounds like everyone was pretty happy. I guess Laurie will try something different next time. Sometimes a dish does get a little weary. It was nice that the waitress replaced the dish with the Parmesan dish.
    Have a great weekend to you and Laurie! Catherine