• John Byrum

Iron Works Grille on the river

Nestled in a flat plain of an ancient lakebed in the foothills of the Great Smokey Mountains is a small Tennessee town called Tellico Plains. This small island of civilization in a sea of forest lies at the entrance to the Cherokee National Forest and serves as the gateway to the Cherohala Skyway. Near here is the picturesque Tellico River. Located just out of Tellico Plains, along the Tellico River is one of my favorite places to enjoy an incredible meal while taking in the beauty of the surrounding area.

Now I know I have gone a long way around to describe this wonder of cuisine and landscape, but I felt it was important to “set the table”, so to speak, in informing you of one of the many wonders in Monroe County. I am thrilled to introduce the world to The Iron Works Grille on the River.

Named after an ironworks that was located near this site during the 18th century, it has become one of the best dining experiences this part of the world has to offer. Savory sandwiches, burgers and salads are just some of their flavorful offerings and there is nothing more Southern than fried green tomatoes and home cooked pork rinds that are great ways to start any meal here.

The first time my best girl and I visited here, we were met with a smile and a warm welcome. The choices were many and the food delicious. Also, a hearty glass of wine, a cocktail or a micro-brewed beer can be enjoyed from their well-stocked bar. Our server, Erin, could not have been more perfect. In fact, she has become a good friend and someone we are always happy to see.

During the warmer months, a covered patio along the bank of the river is the place to be. The sound of the rushing river and watching nature at its finest only adds to the experience. This place could not be more perfect.

The next time you are in Monroe County, Tennessee, take Highway 68 S to Tellico Plains and head up the Cherohala Skyway. This wonderful restaurant is on the edge of the river about two miles out of town. Trust me when I say, “You will not be disappointed!” Tell them “Big John” sent you!



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