Flapjack’s Pancake Cabin has six locations in the Smokies offering delicious, hearty breakfast options. And they are all wonderfully good and worthy of your tourism dollars.
But when it comes to the story of the restaurant’s history, Flapjack’s Pancake Cabin is sorely lacking.
Where’s Paul Harvey when you need him?
Listen, the breakfast game in Sevier County is a competitive business. Certainly, not every hotshot with a griddle and a dream is going to make it. Do you want to be successful? You gotta have a hook, baby.
Flapjack’s strange origin story
Flapjack’s wants to tell us the story of their success and how they began slangin’ jacks in the mountains and at the beach.
But apparently, there is a massive cover-up.
For example, let’s start at the end. There’s a timeline under the “Our Story” section of the Flapjack’s family website. And the last entry on that timeline, dated July 4, 2018, celebrates 50 years of Colliers and hospitality.
The timeline begins in 2000.
Still, we’re going to assume they mean 50 years of the Colliers being in the hospitality business rather than the 50 year anniversary of the concept of hospitality.
The last timeline entry explains that Colliers is the name that has brought us Flapjack’s Pancake Cabin.
Thank you, Colliers. You have indeed been doing the Lord’s work even if your restaurant’s name is a bit redundant.
To be clear, flapjacks are pancakes, unless you’re in the UK. But in East Tennessee, it might as well be Flapjack’s Flapjack Cabin.
In fact, we could have called the restaurant “Flapjack’s Cabin”. Everyone would have gotten the same message and I would be seven keystrokes further away from carpal tunnel every time I typed the name.
But something else is amiss beyond the name.
In truth, it appears the Colliers want to use a little intrigue. Perhaps a little mystery to convince you to darken their door and try one of their delicious Sticky Bun Pancakes.
The story begins – not 50 years earlier – but in the year 2000 with a man named Brent hiking alone in the forest just before the arrival of the cold frosty snows.
So, what do we know about Brent? Not a last name. Maybe it’s Collier. Maybe it’s Goldilocks. Why was Brent in the wilderness?
We don’t know.
Maybe he was searching for the rest of the timeline that was lost in a bizarre Y2K accident.
According to the legend of the timeline, Brent entered a foggy clearing and found a beautiful old log cabin homestead that revealed itself to him.
Was the log cabin invisible? Who was there in deep woods, luring hospitality-driven hikers with a siren song and Elkmont Egg Platters?
Again, we don’t know.
Fast forward to 2001.
Brent has left the woods. He has left the sentient, invisible pancake cabin and returned to civilization with a vision, a flapjack vision.
With a warmed heart and rekindled spirit, Brent went to work creating the recipes for a breakfast cabin restaurant that would welcome guests the way his grandmother always had done…
Who is Brent’s grandmother? The world may never know.
Look, I’m happy for Brent and his mystical maple syrup tour, but I don’t know that he needed to go to Belgian waffle Shangri la to come up with this menu.
That’s not to say it isn’t delicious, because it is, but we’re not breaking any new ground here.
How many Flapjack’s are in Tennessee?
There are six Flapjack’s locations in Sevier County, TN.
Three locations are in Gatlinburg. There is one location in Pigeon Forge, Kodak and Sevierville. Many are conveniently located along the Parkway.
There is also one at the beach in Garden City, South Carolina. They are open most days from 8 am to 1 pm, but remember that hours are subject to change.
What they lack in timelines that make sense, they make up for in pancake quality in a cozy atmosphere.
And they make more than just pancakes. Flapjack’s serves up a variety of well-done breakfast staples.
The Elkmont Egg platters offer chicken fried steak or country ham. The omelets come in a handful of popular varieties.
They’ve got fruity pancakes and waffles and French toast.
Aside from the signature Sticky Bun Pancakes – cinnamon swirled pancakes with pecans and topped with cream cheese icing – there isn’t anything on the menu you wouldn’t find at any other breakfast place.
For sides, you can get biscuits, hashbrowns, sausage or bacon, sausage gravy, grits or Flapjack’s Fritters.
But it’s good. If it wasn’t, they wouldn’t have three restaurants in Gatlinburg alone.
Surely, if you can have three separate establishments all doing the exact same thing in the confines of tiny Gatlinburg, you must be doing something right.
What should I order at Flapjack’s?
Personally, I’m a fan of their skillets – which are served with two pancakes and allow me to honor my hard and fast rule that if a restaurant has the name of a food in its title, you must try that food.
In particular, I’m a fan of the Spanish Skillet because I’m bold and daring and I like chorizo more than I fear heartburn.
There is a lot of competition for your breakfast dollars in the Smoky Mountains and honestly, you have to try pretty hard to go wrong.
But I consider Flapjack’s firmly in the upper echelon of the pancake wars.
Try the chocolate chip pancakes or Reese’s peanut butter pancakes. They’re all delicious.
It’s definitely worth the trip.
And for those who have gluten issues, ask about their gluten-sensitive cakes.
How much does it cost to eat at Flapjack’s? Prices and menu
The Barn Buster Skillet is priced under $20, and most breakfast plates are under $15. A kid’s menu is available for ages 10 and under and prices are all under $10.
Sandwiches and omelets range close to the $10 mark, but remember that prices are always subject to change.
If you can get them to tell you the secret of the invisible, sentient cabin that may or may not compress 50 years of hospitality into 18 years, I’d be obliged if you’d let me know.
You can view their full menu online on their website.
Have you eaten at Flapjack’s? What do you think? Let us know in the comments!