A local ranks the best steaks in Gatlinburg, the Smoky Mountains
When you’re on vacation in a place like Gatlinburg, the odds are that you’re allotting a certain amount of your dining budget for steak. Certainly, you want to make sure you pick the right place to get the best steaks in town. The good news? In Gatlinburg, there are a lot of good places to pick from. The bad news? When you’re eating steak, there is no bad news. Here are your best options for a great steak when dining in Gatlinburg, TN.
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1. The Peddler Steakhouse
When I want a good steak in the Smokies, I’ll go to The Peddler. They offer custom-cut steaks. If I want a rib eye or New York strip larger than 16 oz, I just tell ‘em, and they’ll cut it to size. But I almost always opt for the filet mignon. Another thing The Peddler is known for is the exceptional fresh salad bar. As a bonus, select seating options will offer beautiful views of the Little Pigeon River. The Pedder is located at 820 River Road. A small parking lot is available for guests, and they take reservations via Resy.
2. The Greenbrier Restaurant
There is a schism amongst me and some other writers of TheSmokies.com between The Greenbrier and The Peddler. The truth is you can’t go wrong with either. At The Greenbrier, the bone-in rib eye is king. It’s dry-aged Iowa beef with pepper and salt, and it’s perfection. In my experience, The Greenbrier has great food and excellent service. I’d say it’s safely one of the best restaurants around. It’s also probably one of the more upscale options on my list, which makes it a contender for a date night, romantic getaway or special occasion. The restaurant is located at 370 Newman Road and they take reservations via Resy. They also have free parking.
3. Alamo Steakhouse
I am on record as being a fan of the Alamo, and I mean no insult ranking the place No. 3. With locations in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, the Alamo offers traditional steakhouse fare including filet, strip, T-bone, rib-eye steak and the impressive El Presidente Porterhouse, which is my personal favorite. The Gatlinburg location is 705 East Parkway. With its location, it’s easy to avoid the main traffic, and there’s plenty of parking available. Reservations for two guests for special occasions are available online or via phone by calling (865) 436-9998. Note that reservations are only accepted for two and only at the Gatlinburg location.
4. The Park Grill
The Park Grill arguably has just as good of food and service as its more popular sister restaurant, The Peddler. So why is it ranked fourth? Because it seems a bit unfair to give one company all the glory. Still, located near the entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, The Park Grill offers a full salad bar (like its sister restaurant) and an impressive menu. I’m a fan of the hickory grilled rib eye (also available as a New York strip) and filet mignon. As an added bonus, the restaurant has free parking for guests and offers reservations via Resy. It’s located at 1110 Parkway in Gatlinburg.
5. Howard’s Restaurant
Howard’s has been a staple in Gatlinburg since 1946. They offer a delicious menu of soups, salads, burgers, sandwiches, side dishes and a wide selection of steak. You can order a ribeye, filet, New York strip or T-bone cut. I like to order the Steak for Two, which comes with an 8 oz. filet and a 14 oz. When a restaurant has been in business since the 40s, you know they are doing something right. Note that Howard’s does not take reservations or call-ahead seating. They are located at 976 Parkway in Gatlinburg.
6. Cherokee Grill
While the Cherokee Grill is not exactly a “steak” place, it’s still a good restaurant where you can go when the rest of the family might not want steak for the main course. The Cherokee Grill does a lot of things and does them all quite well, including fried chicken, herb-crusted trout and crab cakes. When it comes to steak, they have a selection of traditional offerings and a selection of “artsy” steaks with various culinary liberties taken. I prefer the tasty Prosperity Steak which has olive oil, garlic and pepper and Worcestershire butter. You can make reservations online via their website. They are located at 1002 Parkway in Gatlinburg.
Calhoun’s actually has two locations in the Smokies – one in Pigeon Forge and one in Gatlinburg. Like Cherokee Grill, it is not actually a steakhouse. Technically, it’s a barbecue place. For example, they have “Best ribs in America” right on the front sign. And even though I normally take a stance against gimmicky steaks – steaks covered in a bunch of unnecessary stuff – I make an exception for Calhoun’s “Ale” Steak, a 7 or 10-ounce sirloin marinated in olive oil, mustard, garlic and Cherokee Red Ale. It is topped with Worcestershire butter, and it is incredible. Make reservations online via their website.
What is your favorite place to get a steak in Gatlinburg TN? Let us know in the comments below!