Blue Ribbon Café – Chunky Chow-Down

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 - by Willie Mae

My son Jack and I were heading towards Tidwell’s to get fresh strawberries and we stopped for lunch at Blue Ribbon Café. If you sneezed, you would have missed it. I thought it was an auto mechanics garage when Jack first turned into the road next to this place.

It is located at 9705 Dayton Pike, Soddy-Daisy. There was only room for five cars out front so Jack had pulled on a side road to go around to the back. That road said “no parking” and there wasn’t parking in the back. Luckily there was one space open when he went back toward the front.

It surprised me to see more than five tables filled up when we went inside. I guess the workers and some patrons park across the street or down Dayton Pike.

It was a cute place with collector items hanging up all over. We were given menus to look over and I noticed that they had hand-written comments about their desserts all over the menu. I knew Jack and I better save room for some!

My boy wanted an appetizer of fried green tomatoes and I have to admit that did sound pretty good. I didn’t see a take home menu and our receipt didn’t itemize the prices, so I apologize that I can’t quote prices, but it didn’t strike me as too pricy while ordering.

Jack got the tilapia with fried okra and potato salad. I looked for something spicy, so I ordered the Blazing Jambalaya which was one dish with pasta, chicken, shrimp, sausage, tomato and Cajun spice.

When the fried green tomatoes arrived, they were just too pretty to eat! I had never seen FGT perfectly breaded, perfectly golden that taste good too, but they were honest-to-goodness perfect FGT! It came with two sauces – buttermilk ranch and a chipotle sauce. Jack liked the ranch. I liked the chipotle.

Our meals were piping hot and smelled delicious. Jack didn’t think his okra was tender enough, but he enjoyed the rest of his meal. At first, I wasn’t impressed with the jambalaya, but I like to give things a chance. I had never eaten jambalaya before so it was just a matter of ‘getting to know it’. I wouldn’t have called it blazing, but it did have a little spice to it.

After I got over my disappointment of it not making me grab my water, I began to really like the flavor. The sauce was not too rich, but thick enough to matter. The chicken was delectable chunks that were juicy and tender and tasted really fresh. The shrimp was big and also very tasty. I didn’t prefer the nickel-sized sausage pieces which seemed a bit dry. It tasted like it was some sort of Italian sausage you get on pizzas – nothing really special. I think the dish would have been great with polish sausage instead of what they had – but that’s just my opinion. It was a large dish and could easily be shared by two – I couldn’t eat it all.

People seemed to enjoy this place – they were pretty busy. Jack noticed there were quite a few people who looked like they hadn’t ever skipped a meal. He said it looked as though this was “a place where people meet to eat!” and the owners knew it too – they had a sign over the counter that said, “We don’t skinny dip, we chunky dunk”. Even their drinking glasses were fat! I couldn’t grasp them one handed.

While Elvis played in the background, I decided I liked this place. It was homey and special. Jack and I ordered a dessert each with the idea of giving half ours to each other. That was the intention, but it never works out that way. Once we locked our lips around our spoons of yummy sweetness, we didn’t want to let go!

I had ordered the Coca-Cola Chocolate Cake and Jack got the Strawberry Cake. Sometimes desserts can be so rich, you can’t enjoy them long, but my Chocolate cake was just right! They added enough coco that I knew I was having chocolate cake! But it wasn’t so sugary that it was too rich, I liked that. It was topped with a nice syrup and softened walnuts.

Finally, Jack and I did give each other a taste of our luscious desserts. When I tasted a bite of his strawberry cake I could tell the strawberries were oh-so-fresh! The seeds burst in my mouth with a slight crunch. The pink icing was a bit sweet for me, but it was a very good cake. I loved my chocolate though. I thought I was going to devour the whole thing and …I gave it a good try, but it was impossible.

Blue Ribbon gives you good portions and you will not leave hungry for sure. But be careful …if you made a habit out of it you just might be a chunky dunker too.

Hours: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.


Ooltewah's Owls Nest BBQ Place 6th In Calhoun, Ga. BBQ Contest

The Owls Nest Competition BBQ Team from Ooltewah placed sixth overall in the BBQ Boogie and Blues BBQ Contest held Friday and Saturday in Calhoun, Ga.      Team pitmasters Steve Ray and Dan Griess placed seventh in chicken, sixth in pork ribs, ninth in pork butt and 11th in ribs.       The competition was won by J and ... (click for more)

Taste Of Ooltewah And Harrison Is May 1

The Ooltewah Harrison Education Foundation also known herein as D9 is hosting the second annual Taste of Ooltewah and Harrison on Sunday, May 1, at Cambridge Square from 12:30–3 p.m. The second annual Taste of Ooltewah and Harrison will include 70 vendors, special performances, music entertainment from the local band The Dudes and DJ’s Sound and Music. The event is free, ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Firefighter Arrested For Robbery Of Hixson Convenience Store

The Chattanooga Police Department has arrested a Chattanooga firefighter in connection with a robbery on Sunday morning. The firefighter has been identified as Steven Kyle Ratledge. Firefighter Ratledge was assigned to Station 19 in Hixson and has been with the department for approximately 3 1/2 years. Firefighter Ratledge has been placed on leave without pay as the investigation ... (click for more)

Rescuers Help Man After He Falls 30 Feet From Signal Bluff

Rescuers helped a man back up after he fell 30 feet on a Signal Mountain bluff on Saturday night. However, he was not seriously injured. At 11 p.m., a 911 call was made reporting the fall. Walden's Ridge Emergency Services responded to 1425 East Brow Road. When rescue personnel arrived on the scene, they reported a 25-year-old male had fallen 30 feet off the side of ... (click for more)

Being Proactive With Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer’s and is the 14th leading cause of death in the United States. It affects an estimated one million Americans and four to six million worldwide,  There is no cure for Parkinson’s, and 60,000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the United States alone. Source: National Parkinson’s Foundation  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Garden In May

Back when we were kids this day’s battle cry was, “Hooray, hooray for the First of May! Outdoor swimming starts today! With temperatures in the high 80s and we dive in to a new month, our monthly walk in a garden heavy with spring time pollen looks promising … AN ORCHID for the movie “Rocky” on its 40 th anniversary: “Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t ... (click for more)