Even the Knoxville Cooking Examiner likes to take a break and let someone else cook for a change. This restaurant review is from an eating establishment that we recently discovered tucked in the sleepy town of Blountville, Tenn.
Dixie Outpost is a refreshing change from the usual fast food lunch or short order meal. They describe their fare as BBQ, hot dogs and wings. The food was exceptional and the whole experience made for a fun Saturday afternoon.
At first glance, the place is a little unorthodox. If you have driven through Blountville, you have probably noticed a big yellow school bus parked there with "Swine Diner" painted in big print. There is additional dining in the bus, and the kids couldn't get in there fast enough to eat their meals while their parents enjoyed some time on the patio under the umbrellas close by. The patio has the atmosphere of a street side cafe.
The little building where you order also has some seating inside, and it is relaxing, inviting, and very clean. The decor is kind of rustic or country, but with only a few selective pieces of antique memorabilia of local interest, in contrast to Cracker Barrel's decor. (Have you wondered what it would be like to be in a Cracker Barrel Restaurant during an earthquake?)
The service (one young lady) was very friendly and upbeat. (There is a tip jar, but no pressure to tip at all.) We came back inside to tip afterwards because she was so extremely nice and helpful.)
One look at the extensive menu choices available and your taste buds, bored stiff from the same old fast food menus, suddenly wake up in anticipation! We opted for a hot dog, which would seem like an easy choice, but it wasn't. There were literally several columns of hot dog varieties, all brand new taste options for those bored with McThis and McThat. We chose the Chicago Style Dog, which was very good.
Side items were another difficult decision because there was a long, long list of choices, including fried dill pickles and banana pudding. We chose fried potatoes and onions, which were little cubed pieces in a Styrofoam cup. They were perfect, but we wanted more of them! They were a great backdrop to try the several good sauces they offered.
Speaking of sauces, when you choose to dine outside, there are little pre-prepared red buckets with a roll of paper towels and a bottle of each barbecue sauce to make it easier for you. These are hanging by the door.
The whole experience was just a cut above the ordinary which made it so much fun. As we left, I casually asked a diner outside if they ate there often. I mentioned how impressed we were with the place. She nodded at the man next to her; he was the owner, David Pierce! He was so happy that we were so thrilled. He said that new menus would be arriving soon, and I'm anxious to see what else they will be offering.
The hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. but they are closed on Sunday. As far as price, it is equivalent to a higher end fast food restaurant.
Be sure and check it out. It may just be the change in scenery you need.
Dixie Outpost is located at 3172 Highway 126 in Blountville.
You can also visit the Dixie Outpost Facebook Page.
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